Today’s consumer turns to any number of mobile websites to order groceries, download music, book plane tickets and even house hunt. In fact, more than 75 percent of respondents to a survey conducted by Discover and 451 Research and published in “Mobile Commerce Readiness: A Merchant And Consumer Perspective,” have purchased products on a mobile website.
But when it comes to mobile apps, the numbers drop. Only 48 percent have done the same using this medium.
Given that mobile app usage is growing – 2016 usage grew 11 percent YoY with the total number of non-game apps to reach 182 billion by 2020 — the challenge for retailers is to make their offerings as consumer-friendly as possible to encourage initial adoption and loyal use. The good news: There are myriad ways to draw in a mobile-savvy audience.
Ease of Use. A mobile app needs to enhance the shopping experience. Retailers are seizing on this opportunity in a number of ways including scanning codes to help customers quickly find information on products while in-store, store locators to allow customers to find the outlet closest to them and store maps to easily find where the item they are looking for is located within the store. One big box retailer stands out by allowing app users to check inventory at local stores, reducing the possibility of leaving empty-handed.
Superior Security. In order to assure hesitant customers, retailers must make their apps as secure as possible, from top to bottom. This includes having a strategy for customer data collection, including how it is gathered, how long it is retained and what applications can access it. Adopting solid end-to-end encryption technologies to thwart fraud is essential, as are processes to routinely test security software and policies.
Loyalty Integration. If apps are meant to encompass the entire shopping experience from product research to purchase, the integration of loyalty points and rewards is key. Some retailers are using their apps to push relevant coupons and offers to users’ mobile phones based off their prior purchase history. Other retailers are making it easy to not only keep track of points or rewards accrued, but also allow customers to redeem the points and rewards through an in-app purchase. One retailer has grown its app audience to 5 million per week, thanks in part to its robust, easy-to-use in-app loyalty program.
By attracting a mobile-savvy customer base with an app that meets their needs, smart retailers can set themselves up for success in the digital age.
Original Source: Discover Global Network