New Report Finds One in Four Christmas Shopping Excursions Took Place on a Mobile Device

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RichRelevance’s inaugural UK Christmas Shopping Study reveals the e-commerce trends that will shape 2012.

“M-commerce is rapidly becoming a top priority for the retail industry as customers look to connect with retailers anytime, anywhere.” Darren Hitchcock, RichRelevance

The high street may have taken a hit this Christmas but online shopping was a bright spot for many British retailers, culminating in Boxing Day 2011 being named the UK’s biggest ever online shopping day*. In a new study released today, RichRelevance, the leading provider of personalisation to online retailers, reported that mobile was a huge driver of e-commerce shopping in December, with more than a quarter of online shopping sprees taking place on mobile. The report also found that Apple iOS devices shoppers accounted for 79% of mobile purchases in December.

The first UK Christmas Shopping Study from RichRelevance analysed the shopping behaviour of 139 million consumers on many of the UK’s largest retail websites during the month of December 2011. Created to give retailers new insight into how the proliferation of tablet devices and smartphones is impacting the way British consumers shop and buy, key findings from the report include:

  •     Mobile continues strong growth: More than one in four (27%) of online shopping excursions in the UK occurred on a mobile device during the busy shopping season. In fact, from the beginning of the month (1 December 2011), the mobile share of online shopping sessions grew steadily, rising from 23% at the beginning of the month to 31% by 31 December.
  •     Mobile percentage of overall sales: Shoppers purchasing from their mobile devices represented just over 8% of total sales.
  •     Christmas Day and Boxing Day: After enjoying their Christmas lunch and Boxing Day leftovers, consumers settled in on the sofa to shop online: on Christmas Day, 43% of all shoppers were on a mobile device and on Boxing Day the number declined slightly to 40%.
  •     iPad and iPhone dominate mobile shopping: Apple mobile devices account for the bulk of all online non-desktop sales: just over 97% of the sales originated from an iPad or an iOS-enabled device in December 2011,
  •     Mobile shoppers spend more than desktop shoppers: During the month of December, average order value on mobile devices was £111.86, compared with £102.20 on desktops.

“M-commerce is rapidly becoming a top priority for the retail industry as customers look to connect with retailers anytime, anywhere. This is evidenced by the fact that mobile devices accounted for more than a quarter of online shopping and nearly one in 10 pounds this Christmas,” said Darren Hitchcock, vice president, UK and European region, RichRelevance. “We are working in depth with the majority of our customers in support of their mobile initiatives to ensure consumers have a consistent and personalised experience regardless of which channel they choose to shop.”

The UK Christmas Shopping Study analyses the shopping patterns of online consumers in the UK. The study is based on more than 139 million online shopping sessions and 3.7 million orders, which took place between 1 December 2011 and 31 December 2011 on the websites of UK retailers. The analysis was conducted on select large UK retailers who have deployed the {RR} personalisation software suite.

About RichRelevance
RichRelevance powers personalised shopping experiences for the world’s largest and most innovative retail brands, including Walmart, Sears, Target, Marks & Spencer and others. Founded and led by the e-commerce expert who helped pioneer personalisation at, RichRelevance helps retailers increase sales and customer engagement by recommending the most relevant products to consumers regardless of the channel they are shopping. RichRelevance has delivered more than $3 billion in attributable sales for its retail clients to date, and is accelerating these results with the introduction of a new form of digital advertising called Shopping Media which allows manufacturers to engage shoppers where it matters most – in the digital aisles on the largest retail sites in world. RichRelevance is headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in New York, Seattle, Boston and London. For more information, please visit

*Experian Hitwise


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