It seems as if every retailer, analyst and app developer is coining their own catchy commerce term. Along with the tried-and-true eCommerce (electronic commerce), there is fCommerce (Facebook commerce), mCommerce (mobile commerce) and sCommerce (social commerce). Now there’s a new term in this alphabet soup: “couch commerce.”
Accelerated two years ago by the launch of the Apple iPad, the tablet market has experienced enormous sales growth. Boston-based research firm Strategy Analytics predicts U.S. tablet sales are expected to reach nearly 50 million units by 2015. It’s no surprise that retailers, who had been struggling with the limited screen space of the smartphone, are taking advantage of this new medium. However, they’ll have to rethink their approach since tablet user behavior is quite different than laptop, desktop or smartphone user behavior.
While tablets have not replaced home computers or smartphones, they are changing the way consumers make purchases. Tablets are seen more as leisure devices; 70% of tablet usage is on the couch or in a bed. For this reason, shoppers “browse” more. Their experience is more reflective of brick-and-mortar shopping because tablet browsing behavior creates an immersive shopping experience, which translates into higher per-transaction purchases.
Tablet shopping trends are proving that “couch commerce” will be a lucrative business:
- IBM Coremetrics has found that tablet conversion rates (4.6%) are nearly twice the average mobile conversion rate (2.8%)
- Adobe Digital Marketing Insights reports that tablet users spend 21% more than computer/laptop users and total website visits by tablet users grew from 1% to 4% in just 12 months