Smartphones have triggered a massive revolution in the way we use the internet. Thanks to them (and other mobile devices), we are online 24/7, and the mobile internet is in no way worse than the desktop one. Our smartphones enable us to find the information we need, look for a nearby restaurant, and, yes, shop online as well. And that’s what we are going to focus on today. What do you need to know about mobile commerce, and how does this trend affect your business?
According to Statista, in the first quarter of 2021, mobile devices (excluding tablets) generated 54.8% of global online traffic. This trend has been with us since 2017, when mobile traffic exceeded 50% for the first time in history. This shouldn’t be surprising. After all, we live in a world where, as Digital 2021: Global Overview Report informs us, over 5.2 billion people use smartphones.
The popularity of the mobile internet has a significant impact on all areas of our online lives, including shopping.
What is m-commerce?
It’s a term that was coined some time ago to describe shopping using mobile devices, such as tablets and smartphones. Mobile commerce has been on the rise for some time now. As the report above informs, almost 30% of mobile internet users (aged 15+) make online purchases. Additionally, Oberlo.com indicates that the share of mobile commerce sales in total e-commerce sales has increased 39.1%: From 52.4% market share in 2016 to 72.9% market share in 2021.
As you can see, mobile commerce is a real thing that significantly impacts the way we shop online. Now, you have to face a vital question: Is your store ready for this revolution?
E-commerce and m-commerce
Today, every online store must have a decent offer for mobile users. That’s the only way to gain their interest and grow sales in the mobile channel. What e-commerce companies should do in order to attract m-customers?
There are a few elements to think about:
They are in the very center of mobile commerce. Today, every professional online store already has (or is working on) a mobile app. Modern mobile apps provide users with all the functions and features they need to place an order. This includes:
- Browsing the store’s offer (extensive search engine, barcode scanning, voice search, and other elements that streamline browsing the inventory)
- Placing an order (transparent product tabs, possibility to ask questions, high-quality photos of the products, intuitive shopping cart)
- Payments (mobile payment options such as Gpay, Apple Pay, and PayPal are critical)
- The loyalty program (it’s vital to provide users with a built-in loyalty program that allows them to collect points and exchange them for gifts and discounts)
RWD VERSION OF YOUR WEBSITE AND ACCESSIBILITY
Today, responsive web design is a global standard. Make sure your website is 100% mobile-friendly. After all, not every customer will be willing to download your mobile app, correct? You can easily verify whether your site is adjusted to mobile devices. Just go here and type in your website address.
Furthermore, you have to pay extra attention to accessibility. Everything has to be intuitive and transparent. To ensure your website is easy to use on mobile devices, bear in mind these three crucial principles:
- Communication: Provide users with different forms or direct contact (e.g., chat, hotline, Messenger, etc.)
- Be clear and straightforward: Don’t overcomplicate things. Make sure the purchasing process is quick and simple, without any additional complications or unnecessary questions. Also, use simple language, understandable even to people who don’t speak your language proficiently.
- Large fonts and buttons: Ensure all the fonts and buttons in the mobile version of your website are legible and easy to click. Remember that clickable elements ought to be separated from one another so that no one clicks anything by mistake.
Now, we want to show you three examples of well-designed mobile apps that allow stores utilizing them to make the most of m-commerce.. Here we go:
Undoubtedly, they know how to develop a nice mobile app. Their app has some interesting perks and features you should be interested in:
- App-Only Specials (mobile app users have access to special offers and promotions)
- Easy shopping (Sephora’s app allows users to save items, browse the entire offer, and get personalized beauty recommendations)
- AR (they use augmented reality to enable users to “try” products without purchasing them).
See Sephora’s AR feature here:
For starters, GAP gives early access to special events and new arrivals. Secondly, they’ve made the purchasing process quick and safe. They even call it “one-step checkout”. You can even manage your Gap credit card from there. And thirdly, Their Good Rewards program allows users to collect points (both in-store and online) and access rewards and discounts. It’s really an all-in-one app.
Their mobile app is a tremendous example of how retail apps can be advanced. Home Depot’s app allows users to:
- Find similar products with image search (this option is extremely useful when you know how something looks, but you have no idea what it’s called)
- Locate products (the app will take you to the exact aisle and bay)
- Order products via the app and pick them up in the selected store
- See how a specific item will fit their house through the AR feature
- Talk to a consultant
These three examples show that you have to make sure the mobile channel is an integral part of your store and sales strategy. That everything you do concerning sales, marketing, and communication should take mobile commerce into account. Don’t think of the mobile version of your website or mobile app as something separate or, worse, unnecessary. It’s all interlinked in the vast approach called omnichannel. And be in no doubt, mobile commerce quickly grows up to be a key element of the omnichannel strategy.
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