By Jim Buckle, Chief Operating Officer at Feelunique.com

The news this week from Ofcom that smartphones have overtaken laptops as the most popular device for getting online confirms the UK’s status as a nation of mobile movers. But what does it mean for you and your business, and how do you make sure you’re keeping pace with your customers’ changing habits?

The advent of 4G, particularly in the last 12 months has made shopping one of the top reasons to access the internet via your mobile. Recent PayPal research puts the UK’s annual growth rate for mobile purchases at 36 per cent, compared to just 10 per cent for overall online spending.

That’s a lot of potential sales waiting to be snapped up by businesses that offer their customers the smartest ways to shop and pay on their mobile. Today, at feelunique more than 25 per cent of purchases are completed via a mobile phone, up from just 6 per cent two years ago.

Here’s our top five tips to seal the deal on a smartphone.

1. Consistency across devices

More than ever, the customer journey from initial research to eventual purchase, crosses multiple devices. Shoppers might do some lunchtime research on their work PC before shifting to a tablet in the evening and then checking their mobile on the morning commute. Providing a seamless experience between platforms and ensuring that what your buyer was browsing at lunchtime also shows up when they log on to their mobile, is key to keeping it convenient.

2. Think mobile first

These days just having a website that’s optimised for mobile isn’t enough. The emails that you send to your customers through to the checkout experience and receipts you issue all need to be streamlined to suit the needs of people using a smaller screen on the move.

3. Offer an alternative way to pay

Cut down on time at the till by offering quick payment options like PayPal or ApplePay. These digital wallets safely store user data including delivery addresses and card details, which do away with time consuming form filling during the online checkout process and give shoppers reassurances about online safety.

4. Personalise your offering

Knowing your customer and what they want, when, is key to helping them buy from you. At feelunique we make sure we do the work to understand the needs of our customers, their favourite products and how often they repeat purchase so that we can anticipate what they’re logging on to buy, before they even know themselves.

5. Keep it simple

This is the most important advice of all. Fast, convenient and simple are the three most important things for online shoppers. This is even more the case on mobile, because your customer is most likely multi-tasking — on their commute, maybe even in a meeting at work. Minimise the effort of shopping, save your customers vital seconds — whether at login, selecting products or checkout - and they’re likely to come back again and again.