Now more than ever customers are craving a positive mobile experience, but too many retailers still aren’t delivering. Smartphone and tablet use is at an all time high, and continues to grow, and yet many customers still aren’t able to browse and take action in the timescale they would like. According to a study by Microsoft Advertising “69% of smartphone users conduct a search and take action within an hour.”

If they have to remember to take action when they get home, on a laptop or desktop, then you might as well count that individual prospect gone. Most won’t bother. However, the dream of being a completely mobile consumer society has not yet been realized. People are still waiting for the day when the device in their hand is the primary or possibly the only one they will need for everything from grocery shopping to online banking, and everything else in between.

Regardless of whether most retailers are ready or not, mobile is on the rise and optimization is becoming increasingly important to their bottom line. A study by Netbiscuits, found that “76 percent of consumers across the globe will leave a mobile website if it’s not optimized per [individual] device.”

 

Mobile Users Have More Specific Needs

Poor optimization and context, within the mobile framework, is the reason the dream of a fully mobile world – where you can do everything you used to on a laptop on your phone – has not been realized.

Daniel Weisbeck, CMO of Netbiscuits, spoke to Wired Insights, about the specific needs of mobile users and said that the mobile experience is “more action-oriented and much quicker. In addition, mobile has several different technological and design features to take into account – touch-screen, pinch-to-zoom and swipe functions make mobile a contextual and finely-tuned user experience of considerable importance.”

It is crucial to take all these features into consideration when developing a mobile experience for your customers.

See how TechBlocks helped Workopolis increased user satisfaction through the development of a custom mobile platform.

 

The Numbers Support a Mobile Strategy Today, Not Tomorrow

Smartphone and tablet adoption has been consistently increasing in Canada and the US over the last few years. The iPhone has been a game changer, which moved the whole market in favor of personal hand-held devices which could do everything a laptop or notebook could.

A recent report by comScore found that smartphone use in Canada has reached three out of four people, with 13% growth from 2013.Unsurprisingly Android and Apple iOS are the leading platforms, which is reflected in tablet use – with iPad taking 55% market share, and 37% for Android powered tablets. The report shows that Canadians are using these devices to perform a “a variety of shopping behaviours, including making mobile commerce transactions.”

In the US the numbers are similar, with 58% owning smartphones and 42% owning a  tablet. A total of 29% surveyed for the Pew Internet Project’s research have described their smartphone as “something they can’t imagine living without.”

Mobile commerce (m-commerce) is the fastest growing segment within retail. During the 2013 holiday season, on three of America’s key shopping days, “mobile commerce grew more than twice as quickly, at 63%, and accounted for nearly $940 million in sales on those three days”, according to a Business Insider report.

At home and abroad these trends have and will continue.

 

Now Is The Time

Implementing a mobile strategy is mistakenly believed to be all about having an app developed for, at the minimum, the two main platforms (Android & iOS), pushed live, promoted, and hopefully you see some kind of return from it. The problem with this idea is the cookie-cutter approach doesn’t take into account what the customer actually needs, or what you should be trying to say across all channels. It also assumes that mobile should exist independantly from your other customer touch points such as your brick and mortar store.

An effective mobile strategy is one where the apps, mobile sites, etc. are a part of a broader brand strategy that is integrated across channels and where the strategy ultimately meets the needs of the customers in such a way as to ensure ongoing return on investment.

Talk to an expert consultant at TechBlocks today to learn how they can help you deliver the best mobile experience to your customers.