Alibaba’s Tmall Global now features goods from 14,500 overseas brands, 80% of them selling in China for the first time.
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Costing out sites and apps
For retailers with an established e-commerce site, a version optimized for smart phones and the iPad can be launched in as soon as 30 days at a cost of $20,000 to $30,000, Pierce says.
A mobile app, which the survey finds that 34.5% of retailers have already built for iPhones, can also be developed in about two months, but at a more significant cost of between $50,000 to $150,000. Building a mobile app can be more expensive because apps developed for iPhones and smartphones require more custom design, programming and integration work, Pierce says.
At many online retailing organizations, major mobile commerce decisions are made by the company’s top executive. The Internet Retailer survey finds that the CEO signs off on the big mobile commerce issues at 32.4% of companies, compared with 26.5% where the final decisionmaker is the chief information officer or information technology manager and 20.6% where the top e-commerce manager is also in charge of mobile retailing.
With many top retailing executives involving themselves in the process, mobile commerce will become more of a strategic priority, especially at bigger companies with established multichannel brands, says Pierce. “There aren’t many good reasons retailers of all sizes shouldn’t be jumping into e-commerce now,” he says. “Mobile commerce is going to unfold at a rapid pace and retailers need to be present in this evolving channel. Mobile commerce will be a game changer.”
(Click here for full survey charts)