As the world shifts to mobile, the latest Index reveals a surge in mobile payment share of online transactions, marking the first time mobile payments have accounted for more than a quarter of global online payments since Adyen started publishing the Mobile Payments Index in June 2013.
“Across all industries including retail, gaming, ticketing, and of course digital goods, we see the emergence of successful businesses offering a mobile-only experience. For many companies, mobile is now the primary sales channel, rather than simply a key sales channel, aided by the accelerated growth of mobile payments globally in the last quarter of 2014,” said Roelant Prins, Chief Commercial Officer, Adyen. “A ‘mobile-first’ strategy is becoming a reality for more businesses as we move into Q1 2015.”
In Q4 2014, 25.8% of global online transactions took place on a mobile device, which is 11% higher than Q3 2014 (23.3%), and 37% higher than Q4 2013 (18.8%). December showed the highest proportion of mobile payments at 26.6%, followed closely by November at 26.1%. This end-of-year spike suggests that shoppers are more likely to make purchases on mobile as the global peak shopping period hits in November (Single’s Day in China, Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the US and globally), and December (the Christmas shopping period).
iPhone almost level with iPad, Android phones catching up with both
In the battle of the brands, the iPad maintained a slight lead at 34% of mobile transactions, with the iPhone at 32.3%, and Android phones at 25.3%. This is dramatically different from one year earlier in Q4 2013, when more than 40% of mobile transactions were on iPad, compared to 32% on iPhone, and just 20% on Android phones.
If the current trends persist, Android may surpass the iPhone and iPad in the latter half of this year and the iPad is likely to lose its lead over the iPhone in the near future.
Smartphone transactions roar ahead, tablets inch forward
Smartphones continued to pull away from tablets as the preferred mobile device, with 58% of mobile transactions made on smartphones and 42% on tablets. This continues the trend from previous quarters – in Q4 2013, the split was approximately 53% on smartphone versus 47% on tablet. This surge correlates with a global trend toward larger screens on smartphones.
However, tablet transaction volume is still growing overall, with 10.8% of global online transactions in Q4 on tablet compared to 10% in Q3.
Holding steady: Digital versus retail on tablet and smartphone
Similar to findings from previous Mobile Payments Indexes, smartphone transactions accounted for about 20% of all online transaction for digital goods (including games, services like club memberships, hotel reservations, and tickets), and tablet transactions accounted for just 7%. Retail goods (such as clothing, furniture, appliances, groceries) are reversed, with smartphones accounting for less than 10% of retail purchases, and tablets accounting for 19% of purchases. This indicates shoppers still prefer to buy physical products on tablets, but gravitate to smartphones for online services.