Capitalising on 2012's success, mobile commerce is finally reaching its stride, and all the signs suggest that 2013 is a banner year for mobile.
Data shows that more and more consumers shop and buy through their mobile devices. In fact, a quick recap of 2012 shows that online shopping reached an all-time high during the 2012 Christmas period, with 30% growth on Cyber Monday alone. Sales soared and consumers flocked to their tablets, smartphones, and other mobile devices to make purchases.
What this also asserts is that marketers, ecommerce executives and retailers must examine the customer experience and eliminate customer pain points that block successful conversions for the retailer.
If a customer voices issues with mobile transactions, retailers must identify the issue and why it causes customers to react negatively, then they must resolve the issue immediately.
A lot has been made of the growth of digital device usage and the complexity it brings as we look to build an ever-clearer picture of customer behavior.
With more channels and ways of shopping at our disposal, the behaviour of individual consumers differs significantly from person to person. The result is that effective customer experience management now includes more data points than ever before.
By creating customer behaviour models that provide audience speciﬁc insights however, this digital maze is perfectly navigable.
For years now, working in the web optimisation space, I’ve always been frustrated by one simple fact: businesses spend millions of pounds every year driving customers to a website, but spend almost nothing helping those customers convert. For me, it’s a wholly misguided strategy, but is one that doesn’t seem set to change any time soon.
It’s easy to come up with reasons for this remaining the status quo and many myths exist. My favourite is perhaps the case that marketing is relatively expensive whereas popping up a website is a drop in the ocean. But with declines in the effectiveness of traditional marketing combined with increased web sophistication and multiple digital channels now available, it’s surely getting to the stage where the opposite is becoming true.
Smartphones are for browsing, tablets are for buying. That’s if you believe the results of a recent Sapient/Nitro survey, which shows that 56% of consumers rate tablets as useful for shopping compared to just 38% on smartphones.
There’s no doubt any online retailer reading these results will sit up and take note. But in order to turn this into an actionable mobile strategy, it is important to understand more about consumer behaviour on mobile devices of all types and how that behaviour changes and evolves.
Recent figures published by BRC-KPMG give the UK retail industry another grim reality check.
According to the report, there was only a small 2.3% rise in total UK retail sales numbers during February 2012, a significant slowdown when compared to January (where sales grew 11.3%) and 2011 (where overall growth was 18.5%).
Mobile is booming. Chances are that, if you’re shopping online in 2012, increasingly you’ll be carrying out part of the transaction on a mobile device.
The majority of smartphone users are now using a mobile device to browse and shop online while, in the UK, 5m tablet owners are expected to purchase a second device in 2012.
IHS screen digest recently released research predicting that in-app purchases will hit £3.6 billion in 2015, accounting for as much as 64% of mobile app market revenues.
So one thing is clear: if optimising your mobile channel isn’t high on your list of priorities in 2012, it really should be.
As discussed in a previous blog post, customer experience needs to be at the heart of your mobile strategy in 2012.
With online forums, comment boxes online and the growing number of brands with a social media presence, a customer has more ways than ever before to vent their frustrations following a poor online customer experience.
What’s more, a customer who has a poor experience online using a mobile device can use the very same device to log on to Facebook or Twitter and tell their entire network of friends and family about the poor mobile online experience they encountered.
In my last blog I looked at the
important role the call centre team can play in improving customer experience
in a multichannel environment.
In part two, we explore the steps companies can
take to close the multichannel customer experience gap.
Just how important is your customer
contact centre to you?
For some companies, call centres are seen as a
last resort for extremely frustrated customers who have struggled online or in
store and need assistance completing their transaction.
In reality, the
customer contact centre is at the forefront of customer experience and can
often be the only ‘human’ interaction a customer has with a brand.
Customer Struggle report that we produced recently
with Econsultancy found that the majority of etailers (76%) generally first
become aware of website issues when customers call or email the contact centre.
The problem with this method and other feedback channels, such as voice of
customer feedback forms, is that the onus is on the customer to help recreate
or replicate the issue in question.