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The way in which consumers research and purchase products is constantly evolving. Browsing the web on a computer is no longer the de-facto way of doing things; mobile has taken over in a big way. Currently 87 percent of the world’s population now owns a mobile phone, with 1.2 billion people (17 percent) using their device to access the internet1. This is set to grow even further over the next few years, with mobile web expected to surpass PC internet access by 20152.
This year over half (55%) of UK consumers plan to use their mobile device more than they did last year to browse the web3, but it is purchasing via mobile where the real growth is set to occur. In fact, 39% of UK consumers say they will use mobile devices to ‘get inspiration, check prices or product details’4. Last Christmas saw £1 billion worth of goods bought via mobile devices and it is predicted that by the end of 2017, mobile commerce will account for 24.4% of overall ecommerce revenues5.
Companies need to adopt a strategy to support this shift in consumer behaviour. Read our checklist below for steps to embracing mobile for your business:
One of the main reasons for the rapid growth in mobile usage is that it allows users to browse the web and make purchases on the move, from any location. Consumers are time pressured, and no longer want to wait until they are sat at a computer to see the latest news or to search for products; they want the information on demand.
The rise of mobile has led to 37 percent of consumers in the US to be categorised as the “always addressable customer”6. These consumers own and use at least three connected devices and go online multiple times a day from different locations; they expect a seamless experience no matter what device they are using.
Top Tip: Any online activity needs to be considered from a mobile perspective; whether that is your company website, a Facebook competition you are running (there are 819 million monthly active mobile users on the site7), or an email campaign that you are planning. Set the employee or agency responsible for online activity in your business the task of developing a mobile strategy to ensure quality user experiences across multiple devices.
Customers now expect a high-quality mobile experience and for it to be consistent with other channels. It is no longer acceptable for companies to have an excellent website and call centre support system, but to have a poorly optimised mobile site or no social media presence.
It has been found that 85 percent of adults who have completed a mobile transaction in the past year expect the experience to be better than on a laptop or desktop computer8. If companies do not live up to these standards, the ramifications are severe: 63 percent of online adults would be less likely to buy from a company via other purchase channels if they experienced a problem conducting a mobile transaction9.
Top Tip: Focus on exceeding customer expectations by testing and optimising your site on a regular basis. 57% of online consumers will abandon a site if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load10, and for mobile the standards are just as high. Almost three-quarters of respondents (74%) will abandon after waiting five seconds for a mobile site to load11.
Despite the fact that mobile traffic is rocketing, almost half (45%) of businesses do not have a mobile-optimised site or app, according to Adobe12. Of those companies that have embraced some form of mobile, only 21% have implemented both a mobile-optimised site and a mobile app13.
To succeed, businesses must deliver a mobile experience that has context and is relevant to what consumers want. A responsive site, which means it looks the same from any device, is a start, but the key to stand out from the competition is ‘personalisation’. A standard app that does not really offer anything new is not going to help your business stand out, so focus on offering increased personalisation and customised mobile experiences.
Top Tip: In addition to driving mobile users to your site, you need to mobilise your communication channels to interact with and engage your customers. BlackBerry’s new BBM Channels allows businesses to connect and communicate with customers and prospects in real time, direct to their mobile. It could be a great alternative to developing a mobile app as it allows instant access to a wide community with the immediacy of an instant messaging experience. Users engage by commenting on, liking and sharing posts, and also have the ability to chat 1:1 with the brand they are following. Currently in beta mode, try BBM Channels for yourself.
If you are looking to take advantage of mobile and capitalise on its surge in popularity, then your website needs to be up to the challenge. Read our guide on five reasons why your website needs to be redesigned in 2013.
You could revolutionise the way that you do business with new mobile technologies, such as Near Field Communication (NFC).
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