Mobile commerce has been one of the growth areas in the past 2 years.
We have seen investments in the area move from a combined $829 million in 2011 & 2012, to $4.2 billion in 2014. This kind of growth has been due to success of companies like Uber, Airbnb and Pinterest, who have captured the interest of the public and have seen their profits grow considerably.
Uber alone had a valuation of around $17 billion at the beginning of 2014 and $41 billion in their most recent funding round. This is an unprecedented growth and shows how the mobile commerce industry is likely to be the largest growth area of 2015.
The success may have predominantly come from well known companies, others are looking at the prospective money that could be made and attempting to offer similar services.
What 2014 showed us was that the key to success within M-Commerce is that mobile transactions firstly need to be fast and secondly that they need to be for an on-demand service.
This is shown with the huge success of Uber, who’s car service allows people to order a car whenever they need one. It is the essence of offering a service when it is needed, something that mobile is perfect for, as it is something that will always be with you.
Offering services like cleaning or building work, does not work as effectively on mobile, simply because they are not services that require on-demand action.
However, aside from Uber, 2014 has several other success stories from E-Commerce.
Two of these are Pinterest and Instagram.
Both have used 2014 to help monetize their image based apps, allowing companies to advertise on people’s feeds in a native way, rather than the traditional advertising where users would be required to follow their accounts.
As image based media is particularly popular on mobile, due mainly to screen size, this offers the potential for growth in 2015.
Similarly, companies like Paypal, may be looking at the potential for e-wallets in the next 12 months.
This is because there is a massive growth area for mobile to become easier to buy with. As Amazon have found with their mobile apps and 1 click buying options, the simpler it is for people to pay for something, the more likely they are to buy it.
Especially with the rise of biometrics on phones (think the ability to unlock a phone using your fingerprint), it becomes possible to make purchases through mobile very easy. It is something that Apple have done with iTunes and could be the benchmark for how other companies can utilize this technology.
Adding in a card number on a phone can often be time consuming and awkward, so making this easier would certainly have an effect on overall M-Commerce sales. At present they make up 1% of the overall $3.25 trillion of US retail spend, but perhaps with this it could start looking beyond that number and we could be in double figures before the end of the year.