M-commerce gains ground in Europe

21 June 2010

LONDON: Mobile commerce is rising in popularity in Europe, particularly among younger consumers and owners of devices such as the iPhone.

The Mobile Marketing Association, the industry body, partnered with Lightspeed Research, the insights specialist, to survey 3,000 adults in France, Germany and the UK.

In all, 19% of contributors in the United Kingdom had bought goods and services via their wireless handset in April 2010, falling to 13% in Germany and 9% in France.

Totals in this area reached a peak of 29% for 18–34 year olds in Britain, but also climbed to 21% for the same audience in Germany and 15% for their peers in France.

A majority of transactions were conducted using the mobile web, a medium that is rapidly gaining ground in these three nations.

However, while 52% of British participants said they would rather obtain products in this way, 49% of Germans preferred text messages and 56% of the panel in France favoured using mobile apps.

Content such as applications and ringtones were the most common types of acquisition in April, with 12% of m-commerce customers paying for this sort of material in the UK, as did 8% in Germany and 5% in France.

Buying goods and services and the redemption of loyalty points like airmiles was found to be the second most popular activity in France.

While a plurality of shoppers said making purchases through a mobile was quick and easy, only half believed they were secure and trustworthy.

Looking forward, respondents stated they were most likely to utilise discount vouchers and coupons or redeem loyalty points on their phone over the course of the next 12 months.

"Mobile commerce is beginning to change the mobile retail landscape," said Peter Johnson, vice president of market intelligence for the MMA.

"Rapid adoption of smartphones and use of app stores has provided fertile ground for mobile commerce growth to date and this will only accelerate in the coming years."

Data sourced from Mobile Marketing Association; additional content by Warc staff