There's little arguing the impact mobile devices have had on the everyday consumer. Thanks in part to maturing technology, coupled with increased broadband availability in rural areas of the world, more global consumers can both access an online retailer's inventory and complete a transaction. As mobile devices continue to become nearly ubiquitous for online users across the globe, mobile commerce will also see correlated growth.

According to recent eMarketer data, 2 billion consumers worldwide will own a smartphone by 2016. By 2018, that figure is projected to surpass 2.5 billion. E-commerce companies need to act now and serve customers where they're continually looking to make online transactions: in the mobile space. 

Business Intelligence broke down adoption rates in some of the largest global markets in 2014:

  • United States: 81 percent 
  • United Kingdom: 80 percent
  • Germany: 65 percent
  • Italy: 61 percent
  • Spain and France: 66 percent
  • China: 45 percent
  • India: 27 percent

Mobile's influence on e-payments
As smartphone adoption continues to grow, so too will consumer demand for mobile payments. Gartner research forecasts global mobile payment volume to reach $721 billion by 2017. The market value keeps growing, and online retailers need to align their platforms with the right technology to process these transactions.

E-commerce businesses not only need to provide consumers with the platform to make mobile payments, they need to make the platform responsive. Creating a seamless, easy-to-use payment experience for the customer is simply best practice, especially in an industry that regularly battles shopping cart abandonment and bounce rates. KISSmetrics recently revealed data that pointed to the need for e-commerce businesses to make their online platforms mobile-friendly. More specifically, 70 percent of consumer respondents said they preferred mobile websites over mobile applications when buying a product or service. Two-thirds said the same thing when they were shopping from a mobile device specifically. 

It's important to keep in mind that 60 percent of all Internet access comes from mobile devices, industry website MarketingLand said, citing an InMobi report. People are on the go more these days, which means they are filling time between point A and point B on their phones. E-commerce businesses would be foolish not to integrate a mobile strategy in their operations considering the widespread adoption and growing demand for mobile payments. 

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