L2 Think Tank recently reported insights on the roles smartphone and tablet devices play in a direct-to-consumer strategy. By examining the mobile investments of 126 brands across four verticals, L2 attempts to assess the pace of investment and identify examples of innovation. Here, an excerpt from their report.

1. Multiple studies suggest that traffic from mobile and tablet devices is cannibalizing desktop, but mobile traffic still represents less than a third of all site visits. Meanwhile, m-commerce sales (which were up 23% year over year) are growing faster than desktop e-commerce (+13%) but only account for a tenth of online retail. For many marketers a continuing fixation on these two metrics undermines the urgency in mobile.

2. In May 2013 the amount of time spent accessing the web from mobile devices surpassed desktop for the first time in the U.S. Over the past three years it has become clear that growing smartphone (8% of mobile subscribers) and tablet (42% ownership among adults) usage has proven incremental to desktop nearly doubling the amount of time consumers stay connected. More time spent on mobile devices translates to greater access for brands and additional opportunity to influence purchase decisions.

3. Recent surveys show mobile shoppers spend upward of 15 hours a week researching products or services on their smartphones. Nearly 70% of shoppers expect accessible points of sale within five miles of their location and 55% want their intended purchase within the hour.

4. More than eight in 10 brands are now e-commerce enabled on desktop versus less than two in three that support fully optimized m-commerce on a smartphone. This continuing gap reflects investment priorities informed by established user preferences.

5. Over the course of 2013 mobile email opens increased 21% eclipsing all email opens traced to either webmail or desktop clients. Among retail brands more than half of email opens are now driven by mobile but the click to open rate on mobile devices still lags that found on desktop—10.7% vs. 20.4%.

6. The average U.S. consumer spends 2 hours and 42 minutes per day on mobile devices. About 86% of this time is spent in mobile apps vs the mobile web. Three quarters of app time is consumed by four categories: Facebook, Gaming, Social Messaging and YouTube.

To access the full report contact [email protected].