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Mobile to exceed $3T in transactions by 2017: Juniper

Juniper’s “Mobile Commerce Markets: Sector-by-Sector Trend Analysis & Forecasts 2013-2017” report looks at how mobile commerce transactions will be split up by industry, with financial institutions leading the pack for volume. The study suggests there is a particularly strong use case for mobile with bill payments that carry substantially bigger transaction sizes.

“While there are far more transactions for digital goods, the majority of these are sub $2,” said Dr. Windsor Holden, principal analyst at Juniper Research, Hampshire, England. “Compare that with an average mobile banking transaction, which is in excess of $70.”

Buy on mobile
The forecasted $3.2 trillion in mobile commerce transaction is an increase from the expected $1.5 trillion from this year.

Although bill payments will lead for transactions, mobile will still only capture a fraction of total financial transactions.

For example, the total number of financial transactions in 2012 within the United States hit $4,400 trillion.

The volume of mobile commerce transactions will grow at an average rate of 19.8 percent year-over-year.

Currently, activity in the Far East and China bring in the greatest amount of mobile commerce transactions.

However, by 2015, countries in North America will steal the biggest volume of transactions, and will lead as the No. 1 region through 2017.

Driving factors
According to the report, the expected uptick in mobile commerce will stem from convenience, ubiquity and access.

For mobile bill pay specifically, there is a big opportunity for banks and carriers in developing countries.

Often times, only a small percentage of consumers in developing countries own a credit card or have a bank account, but a bigger portion of users own a mobile device and often use services such as money transfers.

Smartphone and tablet ownership continues to grow, but more importantly mobile device ownership has hit a mass amount of users globally.

For example, by the end of 2012 handset penetration in central Europe hit 119 percent and 125 percent in eastern Europe of the populations in 2012.

Mobile penetration in the United States hit 89 percent of the population last year.

In the next few years, retailers will not only need to buckle down on mobile for awareness and brand building, but for commerce to keep up with their competitors.

Nailing the basics such as a mobile Web site is a given nowadays, and savvy marketers are thinking about next-generation features such as one-click purchasing or integrating with a mobile wallet service to streamline the checkout process for consumers.

Additionally, marketers should strategically view mobile as a complement to their other marketing initiatives, such as coupons.

“If they want to marry digital and physical assets, mobile couponing is a good place to start – not only drives footfall but provides information on user behavior,” Dr. Holden said.

“For this, they will thus need to ensure their point-of-sale infrastructure can scan the 2D barcodes on the handset,” he said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York