With adoption of mobile purchasing on behalf of consumers continuing to rise in record numbers, the importance of a solid user experience has come into focus more than ever. No longer can retailers simply cut and paste their existing ecommerce site and hope mobile users follow.
Mobile has evolved into a fully independent channel that needs its own unique strategy that leverages its distinctive capabilities and personality, while also playing into a retailer’s overall cross-channel commerce strategy. To do so, the user experience must be executed with precision.
In looking at the user experience of mobile devices, it’s important to step back and understand the role mobile plays in the overall connection with retail brands. While on the go, consumers use their phones to browse products, perform research through ratings and reviews, share items via social media, and, ultimately, purchase items in as little as 60 seconds in most cases. Understanding these unique attributes helps you understand how to tailor your mobile presence for the benefit of both yourself and the consumer.
A solid mobile commerce strategy can include everything from a mobile-optimized website, a native mobile application, and even methods for in-store mobile engagement. Leveraging a mobile platform that includes these strategies and more can help retailers attract more visitors, generate more sales, leverage their marketing spend in brand new ways, gain insight into customer purchase decisions, and even heighten customer relations over the long term.
It’s important to look at things from a consumer’s point of view. From initial research all the way through to purchasing, consumers demand ease and a full-featured presence to be satisfied. If any piece of the puzzle is missing, you risk losing customers to competitors who got it right the first time. Everything from providing the ability to view rich product images and descriptions to product search, store locators, and even one-click checkout capabilities all translate to an end-to-end mobile commerce strategy that produces results.
What works for one brand might not work for another, however, so it’s important to understand the strengths and weaknesses of different mobile presences to identify what works best for your unique customer base. For example, it’s through the mobile Web that consumers can initially interact with a retailer from a mobile device, as the mobile Web allows customers to benefit from a fast, easy-to-use interface for browsing, searching, and buying while on the go. On the other hand, a retailer may choose to engage and transform the customer from occasional visitor to a loyal customer by having him or her download a mobile application for faster, more frequent, and higher value experiences.
In the end, it’s important to understand that mobile users aren’t as forgiving as they are via the desktop and that the user experience of your mobile presence must be well planned and thoughtfully executed to ensure your success in other commerce channels that translate to the mobile channel as well.