Survey Says Merchants Not Adopting M-commerce

If 2010 is going to be the year mobile commerce takes off, we’re off to a slow start. Many marketers are not ready to face m-commerce, at least based on respondents to Multichannel Merchant’s Outlook 2010: Preparing For The Upturn industry survey on E-Commerce.

The survey, conducted earlier this year, found that 79.4% of respondents are not using m-com¬merce. A scant 6.5% did say they have a mobile site, and 6.1% said they have an iPhone app.

What’s the hold-up with mobile? At the Internet Retailer Web Design and Usability Conference in February, Jay Scannell, vice president-Internet technology at SkyMall, said carriers are not keeping up with demand in an era of 3G iPhones, BlackBerrys and Androids.

This is a problem, because consum¬ers are finally starting to embrace mobile: At the same show, Halley Silver, director of online services at baking prod¬ucts merchant King Arthur Flour, said her company’s m-commerce traffic qua¬drupled in 2009.

Amy Africa, CEO of online consultancy EightbyEight, has other theories to slow m-commerce adoption rates. For one thing, merchants think mobile is way more complicated than it is.

What’s more, most merchants seem to find social media sexier than m-commerce, Africa says.

Africa adds that there are very few mobile consultants, which makes a difference in how many marketers are talking about it.

“One of the biggest reasons is that the analytics are a bit sketchy, comparatively speaking, so people don’t know how to measure it,” Africa said. “Companies don’t know where to start, they just don’t get that it’s easy.”

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