Smartphones and Tablets Medium Of Choice For Buying Online

More Australian consumers and  small to medium businesses are capitalising on Australia’s rapid use of smartphones and tablets, according to the annual Sensis e-business report, released today. The report showed SMEs are making it easier for consumers to do business with them via portable devices with companies offering more technology such as mobile optimised websites.

More Australian consumers and  small to medium businesses are capitalising on Australia’s rapid use of smartphones and tablets, according to the annual Sensis e-business report, released today.

 

The report showed SMEs are making it easier for consumers to do business with them via portable devices with companies offering more technology such as mobile optimised websites.

 

It comes as research shows that 72 per cent of Australians now own a smartphone (up from 59 per cent in 2012) and 44 per cent own a tablet (up from 30 per cent in 2012). Tablet use is highest amongst users aged 40-49 years while smartphones are favoured by teens and twenty-somethings.

 

“The number of SMEs that have optimised their websites for mobile devices has almost doubled, to 17 per cent, in the past year, up from 9 per cent in 2012, and 5 per cent in 2011,” said report author Christena Singh. “For Australian businesses to remain competitive it is vital that they have a website that works well on portable devices. Although there is more work to be done, these are encouraging signs that SMEs intend to capitalise on the opportunities that portable devices present with a further 24 per cent planning to introduce mobile sites in the coming year.”

 

The report also found consumers are using their mobile devices for different online tasks:

  • Tablet users were more likely to look for information on products and services (66 per cent) and suppliers of goods and services (63 per cent.
  • Smartphone users were more likely to look for information such as maps and weather updates and use social networking sites (71 per cent each)
  • Forty-eight per cent of tablet users use them to order products and services compared to 36 per cent of smartphone users.

“Consumers in higher income brackets are more likely to use their portable devices to research and purchase so it’s important that businesses can be easily found online if they are to make the most of this trend,” Singh said.

  

While 58 per cent of Australian consumers have downloaded a mobile app in the past year, just five per cent of SMEs introduced an app in the last year. However, 13 per cent of SMEs intend to develop one in the next 12 months.

 

The proportion of businesses featuring independent reviews of products or customer testimonials on their websites increased to 36 per cent (up from 27 per cent in 2012), 76 per cent now feature product images (up from 72 per cent in 2012) and 40 per cent (up from 37 per cent in 2012) include pricing information.

 

Ninety-six per cent of Australians are now online and the proportion accessing the internet via a tablet increased to 50 per cent (up from 34 per cent in 2012) and 68 per cent via a smartphone (up from 58 per cent in 2012).

 

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