Danielle Tarp

Oracle NetSuite Corporate Communications

Appy Shoppers: high street turns to smartphones and tablets for growth as M-commerce soars

Nearly One In Every 10 Pounds Spent With High Street Retailers Comes Via A Mobile Channel, Says New Research Report

Key findings:

  • Retailers with mobile-optimised sites or smartphone apps report that 19 percent of sales currently come from m-commerce channels—an approximate turnover of £45bn in 2011
  • Across the whole retail industry m-commerce accounts for 12 percent of sales
  • Retailers expect 23 percent growth in m-commerce sales over the next year—an expected turnover of £56bn
  • Two-thirds of retailers also expect sales from social media venues to become an important consideration
  • UK retailers remain positive despite recession and retail travails: 87 percent predict positive revenue growth

London—September 25, 2012—Research sponsored by NetSuite Inc. (NYSE: N), the industry's leading provider of cloud-based financials / ERP software suites, today revealed that nearly one in every 10 pounds spent with UK high street retailers comes from mobile channels, totalling an approximate turnover of £45bn in 2011. With 23 percent growth expected, m-commerce turnover in 2012 is predicted to reach £56bn. The research is based on economic models provided by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) and primary research of 200 UK high street retail managers, including seven of the top 10 retailers in the UK conducted by Vanson Bourne and is announced by NetSuite today. The full report, "The Retail and Wholesale/Distribution Trends Report," is available for free download here.

The report reveals that despite the recent return to recession, UK retailers have a positive outlook for the year ahead, with 87 percent of retailers predicting positive revenue growth and an average expected revenue increase of 10 percent. M-commerce is expected to play an increasing role in achieving this, with 80 percent of high street retailers now have a mobile-optimised eCommerce site or smartphone app, or plan to build one in the next year. This group expects m-commerce revenues to increase by a quarter (23 percent) over the next year. Based on the proportions of retailers using m-commerce and the proportion of revenues derived from it, total turnover from m-commerce is predicted to increase to £56bn over the next year.

With 45 percent of the UK's population now owning a smartphone (Google / Ipsos, Jan 2012), retailers need to ensure they can serve customers via these new platforms, and not be overtaken by competitors. Fifty six percent of retailers view new sales channels as a main driver of business growth over the coming year, and just over half (52 percent) view competitor's' m-commerce apps and sites as a threat to their sales. Retailers also have their eyes on social media, with two-thirds (65 percent) expecting sales from social media venues to become an important consideration over the next 12 months.

"The proliferation of smartphones and tablet computers is rapidly transforming consumers' shopping behaviour," said Andy Lloyd, General Manager of Commerce Products at NetSuite. "People are now used to making purchases via their mobile devices, whether it's for the latest app from an Appstore or the weekly grocery shop. Retailers need to take advantage of this channel to meet the modern expectations of their customers, and not get left behind. However, the challenge for retailers is to integrate the mobile channel without incurring huge costs or complexity, so they need a single solution which can manage all transactions and associated customer interactions with consumers and other businesses on multiple touchpoints, whether this is the website, smart phone, social media or in the store."

"Social media also presents great sales opportunities for retailers if handled in the correct manner," continued Lloyd. "Being able to monitor and react to social ratings, reviews and conversations and devise a social strategy, with personalised product recommendations, rich media management, mobile device payments, and credit card payment processing can help retailers realise further growth opportunities."

Launched in May 2012, NetSuite SuiteCommerce is a new commerce-aware platform that provides a central system to manage all transactions and associated customer interactions with consumers and other businesses on multiple touchpoints (website, smart phone, social media site, in-store, etc.) supporting Commerce as a Service across multiple channels. For more information, please click here.

Colin Edwards, economist at CEBR, added: "In the context of a difficult macroeconomic climate, retailers' expectations seem very positive and may ultimately prove to be somewhat optimistic—but it's clear that the importance of alternate revenue streams such as m-commerce can be a crucial component for retail success moving forward."

For more insights, including perspectives on the potential for social commerce, international sales, and for insights from the suppliers to the UK high street, the wholesale/distribution industry, please download the full report "The Retail and Wholesale/Distribution Trends Report," here.

About the research:
The report is based on primary research conducted by Vanson Bourne in April 2012 amongst 200 retailers with at least one retail store, and a minimum of 20 employees. It included seven of the top 10 retailers in the UK. The same study polled business leaders at 50 wholesale/distribution companies. The data from this research was used by CEBR to create an economic model looking at the potential for some of these trends to play out across the wider industry and present the broader economic picture.

About Vanson Bourne:
Vanson Bourne ( is a specialist research-led consultancy carrying out user research within a technology context. Vanson Bourne's clients range from start-ups to well-known companies that need expert guidance, delivering robust and credible research-based analysis.

About CEBR:
CEBR ( is a leading independent commercial economics consultancy with particular strengths in macroeconomic and market forecasting.

About NetSuite
Today, more than 12,000 companies and subsidiaries depend on NetSuite to run complex, mission-critical business processes globally in the cloud. Since its inception in 1998, NetSuite has established itself as the leading provider of enterprise-class cloud ERP suites for divisions of large enterprises and mid-sized organisations seeking to upgrade their antiquated client/server ERP systems. NetSuite excels at streamlining business operations, as demonstrated by a recent Gartner study naming NetSuite as the fastest growing top 10 financial management systems vendor in the world. NetSuite has continued its success in delivering the best cloud ERP/financial suites to businesses around the world, enabling them to lower IT costs significantly while increasing productivity, as the global adoption of the cloud is accelerating.


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Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements:
This press release contains forward-looking statements relating to expectations, plans, and prospects including expectations relating to the future growth of the retail and m-commerce markets. These forward-looking statements are based upon the current expectations and beliefs of NetSuite's management as of the date of this release, and are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements including, without limitation, the risk of continued adverse and unpredictable macro-economic conditions. All forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to the Company as of the date hereof, and NetSuite disclaims any obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

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