Tablets: Ultimate Buying Machines

Retailers have found an interesting characteristic of consumers who browse their websites using tablets: They’re much more likely to pull the trigger on purchases than other online shoppers.

That discovery is making retailers focus on tablets ahead of the all-important holiday season, as the tough economic backdrop puts a premium on what the industry calls “conversion” — making sure the shoppers who show up actually buy something.

Tablets still account for only a small percentage of overall e-commerce, but they are punching above their weight. While the conversion rate — orders divided by total visits — is three percent for shoppers using a traditional PC, it is four or five percent for shoppers using tablets, says Sucharita Mulpuru, an analyst at Forrester Research.

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