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One of the findings that interested me from our Reducing Customer Struggle report was that almost half of companies said that the quality of customer experience delivered on mobile is poor.
Our report, produced in association with Tealeaf, found that poor user experience is costing online business billions in lost revenue, thanks to site abandonment.
A good website experience is crucial for any online business, and as m-commerce grows, the usability of mobile sites and apps will become more and more important.
At the moment, it seems that there is much work to do to improve customer experience on mobile. Many businesses have failed to keep pace with the growth of smartphone, and therefore mobile internet, usage.
Mobile is rated the worst of five channels for quality of customer experience, and by some distance.
Respondents were asked to rate their channels for quality of customer experience:
Just 9% of respondents believed that the customer experience offered on their mobile channel was good, and a further 46% said it was just OK. 46% believed it was poor.
This poor customer service reflects a lack of investment in mobile for many companies, and the fact that some are yet to see it as a valuable channel. Only a third of respondents said that mobile internet was relevant for sales (30%) and contact or service (32%).
There are a number of challenges that need to be overcome to create an excellent user experience on mobile, the number of handsets and mobile operating systems, variable connection speeds etc, but these can be overcome.
I think the results reflect the fact that many companies simply haven't done anything about mobile yet.
In the case of retail, while a number of brands have launched mobile sites over the past year, there are plenty who have done nothing.
While there is a small but growing market for mobile commerce, customers have been frustrated at times by the lack of usability. A separate Tealeaf study found that, while 23% of UK online consumers conducted some sort of transaction on mobile last year, a whopping 83% encountered some kind of problem.
One key point of friction is the payment process, and retailers need to make mobile checkout as easy as possible to use if they want to maximise sales through this channel.
Another recent study backs up our report, suggesting that many retailers simply aren't ready for mobile commerce yet. Just 18% had fully implemented a mobile commerce strategy, while 28% had no plans the channel.
Planned investment in customer channels this year:
As the chart above shows, just over half (52%) of the survey respondents do see the value of mobile, and plan to increase investment in this channel over the next 12 months.
Whether brands have a mobile strategy in place or not, more and more customers are buying smartphones, and many of those will be looking to use these devices to make purchases or find information.
With many brands still yet to be convinced, or to fully implement a mobile strategy, there is still an opportunity for more forward thinking companies to gain a head start on competitors in this channel.