Study: Mobile sales climbed 9% for Valentine's Day
- Mobile commerce rose 9% in the two weeks ahead of Valentine's Day this year from the same timeframe in 2017, as shoppers shifted their buying to smartphones for the occasion, according to a study by marketing personalization company Qubit.
- Conversions on mobile around the holiday hit 37.94%, while desktop saw 62.06%. Last year, those numbers were 27.63% and 72.37%, respectively. Revenue around Valentine's Day peaked on Feb. 9 and 10 in both 2017 and 2018.
- Sessions on mobile devices jumped from 48.1% in 2017 to 51.54% this year, the study found.
Qubit's shopping data for the Valentine's Day period showed a continued shift in consumers' digital buying habits to mobile platforms from desktop, as was also seen during the Black Friday and broader holiday shopping season. The big challenge for retailers is to match the percentage of visits on a certain platform to the percentage of revenue that platform holds, Qubit said. Desktop continues to drive the majority of revenue, even as consumers are increasingly engaging with brands via mobile, which signals that even though many shoppers use mobile to discover and browse products, they generally move to desktop to complete a purchase.
Qubit's finding that desktop conversion rates outweigh those on mobile is interesting in the context of a recent study by Yes Lifecycle that found desktop continues to drive a higher average order value (AOV) of $96, compared with $58 for mobile platforms. That shows that consumers still prefer desktop functionality for actually making purchases, especially those with higher price tags.
Valentine's Day spending overall was forecast to grow 7.7% to $19.6 billion this year, but likely wouldn't break records set in 2016, according to the National Retail Federation. The industry group said consumers planned to shop at department stores (35%), discount stores (32%), online (29%), specialty stores (19%), florists (17%) and local small businesses (14%) for the annual love-themed holiday.