LONDON: Almost half (44%) of British consumers now use their mobile phones to shop online, although concerns about security and small screen sizes are putting off about a third of shoppers, a new survey has shown.

Retail technology group Omnico polled 2,007 UK adults and suggested the mobile internet is gaining rapid traction with UK shoppers, although there remains "a huge untapped audience to be converted" because 28% still do not own a smartphone.

The company, which provides advice and IT solutions for retailers, also argued that its findings backed up comments earlier this year from Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo.

She told delegates at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, that 2014 would be a "tipping point" for the evolution of the internet.

However, the flip side of the research is that 56% of respondents avoid making online purchases from their mobile devices and 29% say they prefer to visit a physical store rather than to shop online.

Furthermore, a third (33%) of respondents have concerns about internet security while a similar proportion (31%) is deterred by small screens on smartphones.

Omnico suggested retailers could overcome this particular concern by designing dynamic sites and specialist apps and also recommended a "flexible integration point" to help improve their online payment options.

"Our research shows that retailers must remember that they need to innovate across all channels in order to reap the maximum benefits," said Steve Thomas, CTO of Omnico Group.

"The key is giving customers the best possible experience of which channel, or combination of channels, they use," he advised.

Data sourced from Omnico; additional content by Warc staff