Look around you and you are sure to find an overwhelming number of people using smart phones and tablets. Besides being stuck to it, figuratively all the time, it is also the preferred device to shop through.
M-commerce now accounts for about one tenth of e-commerce dollars. It’s definitely the beginning of the era of retailers and marketers getting closely tuned to this platform and developing strategies that meet its needs.
Design and ease of use from your end should be your priority. However, factor in the challenge for seamless blending in of website, in-store and mobile app experience. To your customer, the M-Commerce side of things will touch upon product detail pages (PDPs), e-commerce carts, customer reviews, social sharing, integrated loyalty programs, stored customer information, secure checkout and mobile payments.
Behind a mobile commerce and engagement platform are designers, technology wizards, experts in retail and marketers.
As a retailer there is a bunch of things that you need to do with your mobile commerce and engagement platform. You need to integrate loyalty point programs, sometimes multiple eCommerce engines, features such as push notifications, wish lists, price alerts, store maps and much more.
The engagement side of it has to be real time and hassle free like a super proficient salesperson.
All the above features would then have to be in sync with a robust mobile content management system – this will have banners, emailers, notifications, location based deals and logistic support and more. The Mobile commerce and engagement platform is not just a teller and cash counter mechanism. It is an all in one store interface even requiring to have an analytics dashboard that you should be able to customize based on your marketing strategy.
Scalability and security are essential for any platform you choose. This means as you grow, the store grows with you in a secure and responsive manner – think search results getting more populated, more photographs, more product description or maybe even a fashion and style blog to add value to your customer experience.
The mantra is to have the right context to understand how consumers shop and buy on their mobile devices today. A quick glance to take in the top 5 things to consider to make that possible –
- On an average atleast one third of the visitors in retail access e-commerce store through a mobile platform.
- If you are a retailer, you will find yourself being searched and shopped at through mobile platforms 90% of the time. No wonder brands like Myntra have experimented with the app only route. So find a strong mobile platform engagement strategy.
- For most consumers, the mobile platform is the ONLY platform to purchase.
- When it comes to e-commerce; understand that on the Smartphone retail engagement, it is the mobile apps that anchor it and on tablets it is mobile browsing. To adapt your layout, you would need to invest in two very different kinds of design to make it smoothly operating for your client.
- Connected to the point above, it is important to understand the frequency of use of either to earmark your investments.
Once you have assessed the above 5, it is essential for you to find a vendor to set up your mobile commerce and engagement platforms. Here is what you should be looking for:
- A thorough understanding of trends and metrics in mobile commerce with an ability to explain what works and what does not and how best the conversation metrics can be driven.
- In mobile commerce, vendors on-board clients on a common platform. This is mostly SaaS based which means “software as a service”. So choose a vendor whose platform is dynamic and continuously evolving.
- The market in e-commerce evolves at a quicker rate than the market driven by tangible, physical shops. Check the platform being offered for support for new OS updates, device compatibilities and emerging development standards such as responsive and AI driven interactive, innovative designs.
- Ask to see a pre-built commerce module. A pre built module will help you see a tried and tested version and give you a good idea about their work.
As a process, putting out a request for proposal to multiple firms is a good way to start since then you would receive the most competent rates. As a retailer, this jump is a requirement and is sure to deliver a bountiful experience for both you and your clientele if done right!