The proportion of payments made using a smartphone or tablet has almost doubled in one year and now represents 12% of on-line transactions in Belgium. Mobile e-commerce in Belgium thus has the wind in its sails.

A study by Ingenico Payment Services, leading global digital payment service provider in digital payment services (formerly Ogone), shows that paying for purchases using a mobile (smartphone or tablet) is no longer more than simply a trend. The latest on-line payment related measurements recorded by Ingenico Payment Services demonstrate that more and more Belgian consumers are using their smartphone or tablet to make on-line purchases. This number has almost doubled during the last twelve months. On average, nearly 6.5% of transactions were done using a mobile device in June 2013. Currently 12% of all transactions come from mobile commerce in Belgium.

More mobile consumers and better equipped shopkeepers

This increase in payments by smartphones and tablets is notably explained by a change of Belgian consumer's purchasing habits and behaviour, and by technological advances on the shopkeepers' side. Previously mobile devices were most often used during weekends. However this trend is progressively disappearing in favour of more regular use, including during the week. The security of mobile devices has also been strengthened. In parallel shopkeepers for their part are more and more numerous in surfing this "mobile" wave and equipping themselves with the latest technologies for this type of payment.

"Payments made using a smartphone or tablet are not necessarily the same as those previously made from a computer and are therefore not automatically replacing traditional payments", emphasises Olivier Gillin, Product Manager Mobile Payments of Ingenico Payment Services. "Mobile payments bring with them what is called the ‘cross-channel’ effect. For example we note more purchases made by smartphone in the morning, via a traditional computer during the day and from a tablet in the evening".

The largest expenditure during the sales measured on the iPad

The recent sales period has once again been favourable for purchases made on line and from a mobile device. During last July the largest expenditure on mobile devices was measured on the iPad. The average basket of purchases was measured at 138 euros. In basket size terms the Apple is followed by the Surface and other Windows tablets with an average basket of 113 euros, Android tablets (106 euros), iPhone (73 euros), smartphones running Android (65 euros) and finally the Windows Phone (48 euros).

In distribution terms, the data measured by Ingenico Payment Services indicate that the iPad remains the leader, but is progressively losing ground (65% in June 2013 against 48% in August 2014) to the ’iPhone (16%in June 2013 against 20% in August 2014) and Android smartphones (9% in January 2014 against 16% in August 2014). For its part the total market share of Windows mobiles remains negligible, despite a small increase. "Transactions via smartphones are gaining in popularity, but the number of transactions via tablets is also continuing to grow.This strong increase in transactions by smartphone is linked to a double effect: the improvement of smartphone quality (including Android) and the increasing number on the market", states Jurgen Verstraete, Managing Director e-Commerce Solutions of Ingenico Payment Services.

* This study was undertaken between February and August 2014 on a sample of 2 million transactions by Belgian consumers, or about 13% of total transactions (= 15.2 millions) made by Belgian consumers in the same period.