Firstly, what is mobile commerce? Mobile Commerce or eCommerce can be described as business transactions carried out via a mobile phone or tablet, and this is not limited to the eCommerce industry alone.
Mobile commerce is changing the way eCommerce businesses approach their customers. eCommerce stores or businesses with eCommerce have loads more opportunities to promote their business and increase their sales. Smartphone addiction is so strong that, according to Skilled.co, 82% of millennials check their device within an hour of waking up in the morning and 73% sleep with it beside their bed. Success within a market often depends on being ahead of the curve and an effective mobile commerce solution is definitely needed to remain competitive. Most retailers realize they need to have a mobile-optimized version of their website to keep their customers happy but many don’t yet have a full-blown mobile commerce strategy and accepting mobile payments is still quite uncommon.
There are lots of benefits to mobile commerce. Notifications can work really well on a mobile strategy as they allow you to reach customers quickly and tempt them with offers and coupon codes. Mobile devices are often carried at all times so there is a good chance you will get an immediate reaction or response to your notification. With mobile devices, irrespective of the operating system (iOS, Windows, Android etc), a customer tends to do greater research and engage much more. Everything they need, from convenience to customer service can be provided in a precise and compact way via a mobile app or mobile-optimized website.
Providing an instant contact option helps your customers reach you instantly with little effort. Live chat and one-click calling really benefit your customers as they can reach you as and when they like, even on the move. This gives a good customer experience and allows your buyer to make a purchase decision quickly and simply. Even a slight delay might mean they change their mind about buying from you. You need to remove all the obstacles which encourage them to leave your site and buy from somewhere else. All information needs to be readily available and, ideally, they need an instant response to any queries. The mobile-optimized site also needs to be easily searchable and come up with the expected results quickly and efficiently.
Live chat, product videos, pricing, discounts, stock levels and all detailed product info needs to be instantly available. An optimized ecommerce website improves user experience, which in turn reduces bounce rate and increases more traffic. Location-based notifications help local businesses offer personalized discounts. A study by Responsys found that notifications are considered to be more personal and have a 50% higher open rate and double the conversion rate compared with marketing emails. Location tracking is also helpful when giving customers directions to bricks and mortar stores.
Security and convenience of payments are necessary for all businesses whether it is for desktop or mobile. In-app payments allow a customer to pay within an application meaning you can give more personalized offers. In-app payment transactions don’t require third-party payment gateways and are hosted by the platform itself. As an example, iOS users can pay by Apple Pay whilst Android users can use Google Wallet. A mobile wallet is another concept which allows customers to use a prepaid account to fund their purchases.
According to skilled.co mobile shopping is particularly popular amongst high school students and millennials on maternity leave. The reasons for this are unclear but it’s probably because high school students tend to try new technologies before other demographics. High use amongst those expecting a baby might be due to having more available time and that it’s more comfortable to shop on a phone rather than sitting up at a desktop. The mobile audience is different from a traditional online shopping audience. Fashion, flights, and hotels are some of the most common eCommerce purchases but are currently ranked the lowest in smartphone spending. Buying flowers is not particularly popular online but 40% of millennials spend more on flowers via their smartphone than any other product.
If you don’t want to concern yourself with developing your own solution and keeping up with the latest developments in mobile then you should consider using an eCommerce solution which has eCommerce readily available such as Shopify or BigCommerce.
Shopify stores have a built-in mobile commerce shopping cart which enables customers to buy from your store using any mobile phone or tablet. When customers go to your store using a smartphone, the design will automatically change to use a specially designed mobile theme. These mobile templates work well with the smaller screens on mobile phones.
BigCommerce offers dozens of mobile eCommerce themes that are designed to fully express the power of your brand. As with Shopifythey automatically adjust to fit any screen, are optimized for search engines and are compatible with Google Analytics.
On Cyber Monday this year, mobile commerce crossed a new threshold with $2 billion in sales, according to data from Adobe. Black Friday 2016 was the first time US shoppers spent more than $1 billion on mobile devices in a single day so the growth in just one year is huge. Investment in responsive sites, checkout processing and a choice of delivery options is starting to show results.
eCommerce is no longer optional for retailers as around 75% of smartphone users abandon sites that aren’t optimized for mobile. Mobile commerce allows a business to offer discount coupons, daily deals, special prices for those who are registered and more. This means marketing can go viral and, if done properly, the number of customers can increase hugely. You can no longer afford to ignore mobile commerce and should embrace it to ensure your customers receive the customer experience they deserve.