The 11 Steps to Mobile E-commerce Optimization

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Mobile e-commerce is no longer a thing of the future, it is firmly in the present and is set for further growth. Experts predict that the total of global mobile e-commerce sales will reach €3.28tn.

mobile e-commerce global revenue statistic

Having a website that is optimized for a mobile experience is critical. You will improve your user’s time on your site, boost your conversions and even gain some mobile SEO points with the following easy mobile optimization steps.

11 steps to optimizing your mobile e-commerce store

1. Speed Up Your Mobile Site

Page speed will always be a major player when talking about optimizing your e-commerce store, especially when it comes to mobile optimization.

Due to the on-the-go nature of mobile users, patience for slow-loading sites is not something they have in abundance. According to Akamai, 53% of mobile users abandon sites that take longer than 3 seconds to load.

First, test your page speed and decide if you need to improve it. You can learn how to do this here. You can also measure the load of your website (MB). If your homepage and shop page have more than 2MB, that’s too much.

2. Improve Site Design

We design our stores on a desktop, so the temptation to focus mainly on our  e-commerce desktop user interface is strong. This is a mistake!

Almost 2 out of 3 seconds of the time spent online is spent on mobile, so the importance of designing our site for mobile use as well cannot be understated.

This includes all your landing pages from newsletter and paid ad campaigns. 

testing mobile e-commerce pro tip

mobile e-commerce view test
Source: Google Chrome Dev Tools Screenshot from

mobile e-commerce view test screenshot
Source: Google Chrome Dev Tools Screenshot from

 3. Maximize the Use of Product Images

High quality product images are vital on all devices, of course, but why not maximize the potential of the mobile experience?

One way to do this would be to focus on the swiping function on a mobile.

Make it possible for your users to seamlessly swipe through your product pictures to get a read feel for your item. These images will be much easier for your user to comprehend than plain text. 

4. Implement Search Autocomplete

Another way to add to the ease of shopping on your e-commerce site is to finish your user’s sentences! In the search bar that is.

Use smart automation to predict the rest of your user’s search request by tracking common search terms.

This will save your user many precious seconds. 

5. Think Mobile SEO

Mobile SEO? Isn’t it the same as on desktop? Not quite.

According to research by SEMrush, only 13% of sites retain the exact same desktop search engine result page (SERP) position across all devices.

SERPs on different devices vary due to different SERP features and the screen space, which significantly changes the user experience and your website’s visibility.

Due to the portable nature of smartphones, users usually have less time to search long-form keywords, so sites optimized with shorter keywords will generally do better here. 

Also, it’s worth noting that having more text content on your desktop site works well for desktop SERPs. However, on your mobile device, less copy and more scannability in the form of headings and bullet points will do better in the rankings of a mobile SERP.

6. Collect Emails Without Disturbing Your Visitors

No user likes popups, especially not on mobile devices when the screen space is smaller. SERPs also don’t like it; Google started penalizing intrusive interstitials when ranking websites for their SERP.

They give examples of interstitials which make the main content less accessible to the user.

google web masters intrusive examples mobile users e-commerce
Source: Google Web Masters

For an example of a non-intrusive email capture banner, we can look to beauty brand, Glossier.

They have their easily dismissible banner sticking to the bottom of the page. It is designed in keeping with the feel of the webpage and is not impacting the user experience of the site; the user can still scroll through the main contents of the page while the banner remains. 

mobile e-commerce example of email sign up
Source: Glossier

7. Mobile Optimized Email Marketing

One thing to consider for your newsletter is that mobile users tend to be “closer” to their emails than desktop users.

Even if your user is on their desktop, it is likely your email will set off a notification on their phone, pulling their attention away from their computer and to their smartphone. So your email marketing should be optimized for mobile as well. 

Consider the following for a fully optimized mobile newsletter:

  • Strong visuals
  • Scannable copy
  • Relevant to the recipient
  • Short subject line
  • Minimal CTAs

8. Personalize Your Marketing 

One personalization method which works particularly well for mobile users, according to Think with Google is Geomarketing.

Google’s research shows that 61% of users prefer to buy from sites which personalize their sites to be relevant to the user’s location.

mobile e-commerce personalization statistic
Source: Think with Google

9. Get Your CTA Right

Your users are on the move. They will need a bigger, brighter button to catch their attention and for them know where to click. This is especially important on your product pages with the “add to cart” and “pay now” button.

Consider using a sticky add to cart button at the bottom of your product page, so the CTA is not something your user has to go looking for when making a quick purchase. 

Keep an eye on for a full guide on CTAs.

10. Integrate mobile payments 

Creating a seamless transaction process for your user is one of the top ways to avoid cart abandonment.

By integrating mobile payments or “digital wallet payments”, (such as Google Pay, Apple Pay, Visa Checkout, Alipay, etc.) you are saving your customer time and effort; with mobile payments, they don’t have to go searching for their credit/debit cards.

A long and complicated transaction process counted for 21% of cart abandonment. 

11. Make Your Strategy Cross-Platform 

According to Go-Gulf, 40% of all transactions online use multiple devices along the way. So make the cross-over between devices as intuitive as possible. Can your users save products for later? Can they be shared to friends to discuss the purchase? Is your design consistent?

mobile e-commerce multiple platform statistics

Users do not like added roadblocks or extra work to familiarize themselves again with your site on a different design.

Consistency is key when optimizing the cross-channel experience. 

The Takeaway

Mobile e-commerce has massive global worth and it is only set to get bigger. E-commerce stores stand to lose big money if they don’t meet the needs of their mobile users. Use these steps to start converting more users into customers. 

Do you have any more ideas for optimizing your site for mobile users? Let us know in the comments below. 

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