With the rapid expansion of mobile technologies in the past few years and their subsequent inclusion in virtually all aspects of our lives, more and more customers around the world are looking for a connected shopping and customer support system. In fact, the rate of expansion has been so rapid that most businesses have so far failed to adapt to this fast-changing landscape in the 21st century retail and service sectors. Unfortunately for them (and for the global economy), this failure is costing businesses a fortune every year.

While many companies have been able to comprehend the potential of mobile marketing platforms — the annoying misuse of the otherwise useful bulk mobile messaging being a perfect example of that fact — most of these companies have actually failed to identify the larger picture.

If you also own a business and have failed so far to grasp the significance and potential of mobile marketing, then here are 12 startling statistics (source: Digby) that should leave no doubt in your mind about how badly you need to embrace this wind of change in the business world.

#1 More than three-fifth of the total male population – 68 percent to be more specific – are open to the idea of purchasing goods after seeing mobile ads. The members of the fairer sex are not lagging far behind in that trend either – a whopping 58 percent of them are likely to make purchases after seeing mobile ads.

#2 We all know how addictive social media sites can really be and how an average user spends a considerable time of his day surfing these sites. Now what if we tell you that almost 3 out of every 5 mobile users checks out ads while visiting social media sites? A little unexpected, right? Nevertheless its true.

#3 55 percent of all mobile users today use their devices to access the internet – thus making them prime targets for online ad companies.

#4 Global mobile payment transaction figures will go beyond $171.5 billion this year – an astonishing 62 percent increase from where the figure stood just a year back at $106 billion.

#5 Last year, the number of m-commerce users surpassed 21 millions in the UK alone – and the number is almost exponentially rising with every passing quarter

#6 Over 50 percent of all US retailers now have their own mobile app.

#7 Mobile ads, including sms marketing is likely to account for at least 7 percent of the overall marketing expenditures very soon (10 percent till 2016). Currently the figure stands somewhere near 1 percent.

#8 34 percent consumers made purchases using their smartphones in 2011 alone.

#9 Approximately 30 percent of mobile users are fond of the idea of scanning their mobile to get coupons.

#10 The popularity of mobile coupons is highest at grocery stores (with 41% users having shopped with coupons) according a 2012 Nielsen study.

#11 17 percent of all advanced device owners admit they have purchased at least one product via a mobile platform.

#12 Approximately 50 percent of all smartphone shoppers use the GPS app in their devices to search for retail locations.