The second annual Internet Retailer Mobile Commerce Forum is just days away, and we're busy preparing for what's sure to be a crowded, busy and interactive show. What will driving event attendance and discussion?
Consider these facts:
- By 2013, mobile will surpass standard computers as the predominant interface to the Internet.
- Tablets account for 20 percent of e-commerce purchases, despite only 7 percent of shoppers owning this type of device, according to a recent study by Forrester.
- Meanwhile, the number of tablet users in the U.S. alone is estimated to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 51 percent from 2010 to 2015.
- Forrester expects mobile commerce to reach $31 billion by 2016.
More imminently, a recent blog post by Google's mobile ads division reveals the following projections:
- 15 percent of "Black Friday" searches will be from mobile devices.
- 44 percent of total searches for last minute gifts and store locations will be from mobile devices.
- 65 percent of high end device users report that they have used their device to find a business, and then made a purchase at that business in person.
- More than 33 percent of smartphone and tablet users will start the shopping before Thanksgiving.
So with mobile usage on a steady incline, new devices hitting the market daily, and the holiday shopping season just around the corner, retailers will have their eyes and ears open at Mobile Commerce Forum for ways to improve the mobile Web experience for users.
The Mobile Commerce Forum agenda is chock full of sessions that will explain how to build mobile commerce websites on any budget, and cover all the keys to success in mobile commerce operations--from mobile design requirements, to merchandizing choices, to marketing options for mobile commere sites, to website performance.
Which is where I come in. On Tuesday, Oct. 11 from 4 p.m. to 4:45 p.m., I'll be participating with Akamai Technologies's Rob Foley and Your Electronic Warehouse's Natha Holthaus in the panel discussion, "Mastering the challenges of mobile performance." This session will examine user expectations for mobile websites as well as the obstacles to delivering mobile Web content, and will showcase one m-commerce site built for top performance.
I'll explain why performance is so essential to the mobile experience, what consumers expect from mobile websites, and the hurdles in delivering mobile performance. I'll also provide tips for performance optimization.
You can also find me on the show floor at the SmartBear booth, #205. Here we'll be exhibiting the latest features of our AlertSite website and mobile performance monitoring solution. These include Image Validation, which determines if Flash content on your site is being displayed to website visitors as intended, and ContentViews, which helps you isolate and report on the performance of third party content, such as ads, CDNs, visitor tracking and more.
If you haven't already signed up to attend Mobile Commerce Forum, it's not too late to register. But if you can't make it, and you're interested in learning more about how to optimize mobile website performance, check back here later. I'll publish my slides from the show sometime next week.