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Button 2019 Mobile Commerce Report: H1 Analysis

As we passed the halfway mark of 2019 and approach the unofficial start of back-to-school shopping with Prime Day, we took a look at the mobile consumer’s shopping behavior in the Button Marketplace over the course of H1 2019. In our previously-released holiday analysis, we found that the mobile consumer chooses apps during the holidays; in the first half of 2019, this preference for apps not only held true, but increased during the regular shopping season. Whether you're a mobile marketer testing different campaigns and audiences or evaluating your channels to determine which yield the highest return on ad spend, this analysis of the mobile consumer is designed to help you reach your marketing goals and grow your business.

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Throughout all of 2019, mobile apps have continued to convert at much higher rates than mobile web experiences. During the holiday season, we saw a +108% increase in in-app vs. mobile web conversion, and during the first half of 2019, this jumped to a +157% difference. Mobile apps minimize the consumer’s barrier to purchase with reduced taps, ultimately increasing conversion. According to App Annie, mobile apps can be a powerful driver of customer loyalty considering smartphone users spend 7x more time in native apps than in browsers and, oftentimes when customers move from web to an app, they can purchase more frequently. A user who regularly orders on a mobile website is a great indicator of loyalty and a solid target for an app install campaign.

Apps Outperform Mobile Web Across All Industries

For brands looking to grow their mobile business, driving app user acquisition and engagement is critical across all industries. We see the biggest difference for on-demand brands, which have a 307% higher mobile app conversion rate (CVR) in 2019 to date. The fewer the taps, the faster the food arrives for your customers.

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Engaging the Mobile Consumer

User behavior varies at different hours of the day, so brands should take note and match campaigns and promotions to the most optimized time slot.

After a long day, post-dinner shoppers know what they want to buy and are not here to browse, they're ready to purchase. Across the Button Marketplace, the mobile consumer purchases at the highest rates between 7-9 PM. But not every business is focused on conversion. If transaction volume is your goal, then marketing efforts should be targeted around 1 PM when average order values (AOV) are highest. Afternoon shoppers are active browsers but purchase at lower rates. However, that browsing pays off—those that purchase have the highest AOV.

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Beyond the times of day, mobile marketers are increasingly segmenting their audiences to test and optimize marketing spend. We found that active users¹ are more likely to convert because of their brand loyalty, yet lapsed users² spend more per transaction since they purchase less frequently. Conversion campaigns should focus on active users as they convert 47% more than lapsed users. But don't forget about targeting lapsed users, too, as when they do convert, they have 87% higher average order values than active users.

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Key Takeaways

  • Savvy marketers are running app install campaigns to acquire loyal users before the holidays since shoppers convert 157% higher on apps than on mobile web.
  • When running campaigns, always test and optimize for the time of day—afternoon shoppers (1 PM) have the highest average order values.
  • Consider segmenting audiences based on past purchase behavior—lapsed users have 87% higher order values than active users.

Interested in learning how Button can help you optimize your mobile strategy? Reach out to us.


¹An active user has shopped with a brand in the last 30 days.

²A lapsed user hasn’t shopped with a brand in the last 30 days, but has purchased in the last 365 days.

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