Largest E-Commerce Sites Still Mobile Weak, But Getting Better

The latest look at how mobile-friendly America's largest E-tailers are shows a group that is still nervous about mobile. A stunning 88 percent of those largest sites are still incompatible with the most common mobile browsers in 2010. On the bright side, that's a lot better than last year, when the same report found 96 percent were incompatible.

The mobile browser is a little worse than it sounds. Although 88 percent were incompatible with any of the key browsers this year, 95 percent of the sites didn't support all five tested platforms (iPhone, Android, Blackberry, Palm, Windows). The survey, performed by Acquity Group and examining 560 of the largest retail sites in the U.S. (they used the Top 500 list from InternetRetailer), had somewhat better news for Apple: Last year, one percent of the sites were optimized for iPhone, a number that has now jumped to 11 percent. Downloadable apps, which is probably a less crucial area for many sites, also increased. Two percent of those retail sites offered them last year, a figure that this year jumped to seven percent. (Note: The National Retail Federation recently published a white paper on mobile retail best practices. Nothing surprising or new here, but if you know of anyone new to the mobile retail space who wants a good guide to quickly get up to speed, it's an excellent start.)