Mobile commerce is on the move

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Mobile commerce is on the move

While the mobile shopping market has grown to more than 36 million smartphone users, Korea’s leading online marketplace, the open market Auction, topped the number of mobile unique visitors (UVs) among its competitors. Unique visitor refers to someone who visits a website once or more.

Auction said yesterday that from Nov. 4 to 10, the number of UVs reached 3.1 million, up 65 percent from the 1.2 million recorded the previous week.

The company’s mobile shopping app also hit the No. 1 spot on the weekly chart of the Android app store, or Google Play, due to its high volume of downloads from Nov. 8 to 12.

In the same period, Auction said UVs on its website and mobile app increased 20.7 percent compared to the previous week, the second highest after Gmarket. The average time spent on Auction’s website and mobile app was 24.54 minutes, according to the company.

On the back of UV growth, Auction’s mobile sales, which accounted for 5 percent of total sales in May, shot up to 20 percent in October.

Meanwhile, Auction’s platforms, which are suitable for mobile shoppers, and its differentiated marketing strategies, are cited as the reasons behind its rapid mobile growth.

Auction recently revamped its mobile app to include a customized product recommendation service and a catalogue search function.

Mobile app customers can check the history of recently viewed and purchased products.

“By introducing services that allow mobile customers to easily and quickly use the product search function and encounter abundant product data, which is one of many advantages of open markets, we plan to continue accelerating the mobile shopping growth,” said Kim Tae-soo, managing director of the product development department at Auction.

Meanwhile, domestic social commerce company Coupang said its cumulative annual transactions have exceeded 1 trillion won ($948.3 billion) in the three years since it began.

Coupang also said it has been the top social commerce company in mobile UVs since July 2012 and has totaled more than 1 trillion won in mobile transactions, accounting for 60 percent of total sales.

With this trend, Coupang said it expects the total mobile transaction amount for 2013 will exceed 500 billion won, a fourfold increase from last year. Coupang cited the stable growth of mobile services, quality management of products and services, and continuous investment in delivery services and customer satisfaction as factors in its success.

In the retail industry, surpassing 1 trillion won in transactions signifies stability and quantitative growth.

“By the end of this year, our total annual transaction will reach 1.2 trillion won. Based on our current management philosophy continued, we will achieve sustainable growth as the leading e-commerce service providing innovative services,” said Kim Beom-seok, CEO of Coupang.

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