Ecommerce is growing rapidly in Australia especially since consumers are hungry for good retail offerings and more than ready for it. Australia is an absolute "apple country" with ecommerce players often finding that more than 95% of their mobile traffic comes from Apple devices, split 50-50 between iPhones and iPads, as it was the case for online shoe retailer StyleTread for example. In addition the 3G and 4G penetration in Australia, especially in the five metropolitan areas, which make up the majority of ecommerce volumes, is more than satisfactory. Australian's are also craving for the latest products, they shop heavily online and are great bargain seekers. It is therefore no surprise that a number of big online retailers and private shopping clubs have grown to very significant sizes such as surfstich, brandsexclusive, ozsale, livingsocial, catch-of-the-day or oo.com.au. Many of them offer great mobile sites or even native iPhone apps to attract the large of amounts of mobile search traffic that sometimes even peask during prime time as shoppers increasingly browse their mobile devices while watching television. Mobile shoppers are often very lucrative shoppers with high incomes, but I would like to spark a controversial discussion by posting a thesis: "Mobile shoppers will increasingly steer away from mobile-optimised sites towards the full desktop versions in order to get the full experience / look&feel of an offering" How often have you clicked on the link all the way at the bottom that takes you to the desktop / classical page? I think all product managers are well advised to optimise their core sites also for touch-sensitive devices... Windows 8 is maybe not the best example for this new trend, as it drives me absolutely mad, but it surely applies some mobile GUI design principles. :-) Let me know your thoughts...
Bjorn Behrendt is a serial entrepreneur with an extensive knowledge about online retail, payments and mobile commerce.