It’s critical to optimize your e-commerce site for both mobile and desktop users in order to maintain a strong online presence. The goal is to create a seamless shopping experience for your customers regardless of the device they use to access your site. 

In this article, we’ll highlight the five top differences in desktop and mobile shopping. This should shed some light on how to best create an enjoyable customer shopping experience.  

1. Autocomplete is key for mobile users

Mobile shoppers don’t want to type out long search queries on small, touch screen keyboards. Online shoppers expect a robust autocomplete system that anticipates the products they’re looking for as they type in their search query.   

Implementing an intelligent auto-prediction search function on your site will quickly guide your mobile shoppers to the products they wish to see. Your desktop shoppers will appreciate this function as well, and will come to expect it if they have previously shopped on a mobile device on your site.   

Autocomplete creates a seamless shopping experience across devices, while driving customers to the products they are most likely to purchase. 

2. Mobile shoppers want advanced filtering options

Mobile shoppers want the ability to quickly jump not only to specific products, but also to brand or item-type product levels. Ensure that your site’s search functionality can incorporate smart filtering into results. This allows your mobile shoppers to efficiently navigate your site, whether they want to view a specific product or scroll through many similar products.   

For mobile shoppers operating on small screens, not having to go to multiple menus to navigate to product type or brand pages creates a more pleasant overall shopping experience that they are more likely to repeat. 

3Mobile screen sizes are significantly smaller, and vary between devices and brands

One of the biggest differences between mobile and desktop shoppers is the difference in hardware and capabilities. Ensure your site functions similarly across devices, regardless of screen size.   

This means paying attention to whether site functionality is maintained across different brands and models of mobile devices, which can include tablets with 13-inch screens, and phones with 4-inch screens. Customers should have an optimized shopping experience on every device. 

4. Mobile wireless connections are slower than desktop broadband

Part of maintaining a seamless shopping experience is accounting for differences in loading times between mobile and desktop devices. In general, desktop devices have more robust hardware and broadband connections capable of loading image or flash-heavy sites much more quickly than their mobile counterparts.   

Mobile devices access your site from a variety of connections, including 3G, 4G LTE, and wireless broadband. Verify that your site design allows mobile devices to load your website’s pages with as little delay as possible. There is nothing more frustrating for mobile shoppers than clicking on the item they want and being greeted by a lengthy loading screen.   

Mobile customers won’t wait for slow sites. This affects customer retention and conversion rates. If your site isn’t optimally configured for a variety of connection speeds and hardware configurations, you risk losing customers and sales. 

5Payment options

Mobile shoppers are less likely than ever to pull out their credit or debit card and type in all of their information. Incorporate a variety of different payment options on your site. Verify that your site has the ability to accept client-based payment storage options, like ApplePay and Google Pay, as well as more established alternative payment methods like PayPal.  

It’s important to determine if your checkout process is streamlined for mobile shoppers. One-click checkout has become more commonplace and allows both mobile and desktop customers to quickly complete the checkout process using existing payment, billing, and shipping information.  

For more strategies to improve your mobile e-commerce experience, download the white paper: Site Search and the Mobile Experience