The tipping point of mobile use over desktop to browse the internet happened back in 2015, thanks to the evolution of smartphones and their promise of an improved user experience. What didn’t happen at this point was a widespread increase in consumers completing purchases via mobile, especially for larger-value products such as holidays.
Yet, fast-forward to 2018, and one in five of us are now buying holidays on our mobile phones, according to new research carried out by Holiday Hypermarket. This statistic is backed up by their transactional data, which has shown a rise from 15 to 20% in bookings made from mobile devices in the first three months of 2018, versus 2017.
Further supporting this, ABTA’s Holiday Habits report reveals similar stats, with mobile bookings increasing from 13–20% between 2016 and 2017.
Holiday Hypermarket representative Craig Duncan says, “Travel companies have worked hard to improve the mobile booking experience for their customers. With the increased usage of smartphones boasting larger screens, and the rise of apps, it’s made booking easier as consumers become more confident in mobile commerce.”
While desktop still generates the majority of holiday bookings, tablet and mobile transactions are likely to overtake within a matter or years based on the current trend. In fact, there is now an even split between desktop and smaller devices. The below table shows the percentage of bookings made on the Holiday Hypermarket website, split across devices between January to March over the last three years:
This end of March saw Google announce they have started migrating websites to mobile-first indexing. A hugely significant moment in search, this means the world’s leading search engine will use the mobile version of a page for indexing and ranking, further cementing the shift from a desktop to mobile-centric connected world.
Duncan added, “We certainly expect to see mobile bookings increase exponentially in 2019 and soon surpass desktop. We know our customers like to use more than one device when exploring our site too, so our focus is on creating a frictionless booking journey experience for our users. This focus takes into account trends in voice search and represents the ongoing commitment we have to our customers in providing a modernised online shopping experience that is personalised, seamless and secure.”