PayPal: Convenience, Int’l Demand Push Holiday Mobile Shopping (Dec. 4, 2014)
Holiday shoppers with PayPal accounts took to their mobile devices in droves last week, with PayPal Inc. reporting a 56 percent surge in mobile sales volume over its platform on Thanksgiving Day compared to last year and a 62 percent jump on Black Friday. The number of shoppers making at least one purchase via mobile device also increased on those days by 43 percent and 51 percent, respectively.
One dollar of every $6 spent on e-commerce flows through PayPal, which attributed the growth in mobile shopping to changing consumer demands and expectations. “With numerous devices at the tips of our fingers, it appears people are less willing to venture out into the cold … Instead they want the deals to come to them and technology is making it easier for people to decide how, when and where they choose to shop,” Chris Morse, head of merchant communications for PayPal, wrote on the company’s blog.
The rise of omnichannel commerce also likely bolstered the mobile numbers, Pablo Rodriguez, head of global consumer initiatives at PayPal, said during an interview with Bloomberg TV. “Even consumers who are in stores filling their baskets are also on their phones at the same time, multitasking for other deals,” he noted. Apparel and electronics were the top two merchandise categories, with much of the demand for those categories coming from shoppers outside the U.S. looking to take advantage of holiday deals, according to Rodriguez. U.S. merchants are enticing overseas consumers with offers like free shipping and exchange, he noted.
PayPal’s strong mobile figures come in the wake of a report by the National Retail Federation that showed an overall downtick for Thanksgiving weekend shopping in stores and online compared to last year. The retail association is still forecasting a 4.1 percent sales increase for the entire holiday season.
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