New research has revealed that the UK is expected to spend £27.02 billion on purchases on mobile devices this year, an increase of 26 per cent from £21.51 billion in 2016.
According to the Centre for Retail Research (CRR) and online retailer VoucherCodes.co.uk, the UK will make more transactions on mobile devices than any other European market, with Germany coming in second at £24.54 billion followed by France at £11.54 billion.
Total online spending in the UK is also set to hit £67.38 billion in 2017, and then £73.58 billion by 2018 – a stark contrast to 2014 figure of £46.19 billion.
In addition, the number of mobile shoppers in the UK is expected to rise – from 23 million in 2016 to over 28 million in 2017 – as more retailers adopt a mobile-first strategy.
By the end of 2017, mobile devices are expected to be responsible for 27.9 per cent of online retail sales in Europe, on average.
In the UK, the split will is predicted to be even more profound, with 40.1 per cent of online retail sales being made using a mobile device.
The CRR and VoucherCodes.co.uk said growing consumer trust around shopping via mobile, coupled with investments made by retailers to improve user experiences on smartphones and tablets, are key factors in what they call an “impressive growth”.
Development of mobile payment systems, such as ApplePay, has also accelerated this trend.
Research from VoucherCodes.co.uk and YouGov last year also found that Brits were spending 8.6 per cent of their disposable income using mobile payment devices.
READ MORE: Online retail sales smashes records in 2016
The value of mobile payment transactions is also on the rise, with the average payment made using a mobile device increasing by 9.2 per cent since 2015, compared to an increase of just 2.4 per cent across Europe.
The research found that the average value of mobile transactions in the UK was £51 in 2016, a figure that is predicted to rise to £55 over the next 12 months. Meanwhile in mainland Europe, the average transaction value was just £44 in 2016, set to rise to £45 this year.
“These latest figures confirm the increasing significance of mobile to both retailers and consumers, which is now the main driver for the continued growth of the online retail sector,” VoucherCodes.co.uk managing director Claire Davenport said.
“This year, 40 pence of every pound spent online will come from a mobile transaction, a reality that retailers simply cannot ignore.
“To remain competitive and respond to customer demands, it is more vital than ever for UK retailers to evolve their mobile offering.
“This can be done by providing an optimised and mobile-friendly online shopping experience, developing truly seamless customer experiences."