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Let’s a look at how the trend of people using mobile phones more and more is also having an impact on commerce and mobile commerce. So this creates lots of opportunities.
It’s incredibly important to have a mobile version of your website so that people, first of all, can just get a good user experience while browsing and shopping on your mobile phone. It’s also really pragmatic reason that you need to do this is that because Google want to ensure a good user experience for their users they are penalizing sites that are not formatted correctly for mobile phones, by making them less visible when people are searching for content on mobiles. It’s incredibly important and a real business basic that for an e-commerce site, you must have it correctly formatted for your mobile.
We’ve already spoken about that very briefly where you can use geolocation targeting to pop up particular deals that are relevant to someone while they’re in a particular store in a particular location. That makes it feel very tailored to their customer and they’re clearly, kind of, in purchasing mode while they’re in that shop. And so it has a really high potential for conversion.
The other thing you just must be a little bit careful of is people feeling like they’re being spied on and being watched and that might freak a few people out. You just need to test it with your audience and see how it works and potentially then segment your database and your audience accordingly depending on which ones take the behavior that you hope they do and which ones don’t.
Another interesting mobile commerce trend is price comparison using barcode scanning. This is where there’s a real kind of interface between traditional bricks and mortar retail and e-commerce retail. It’s now very easy for people to simply scan the barcode of a product in a shop and find out whether they could buy that product more cheaply online.
We spoke earlier about how transparency is a real trend between different prices. And so those retailers who aren’t the cheapest need to be thinking about what value they are adding to the overall buying experience so that retailers are still going to choose to buy from them. So is it overall kind of ambiance of the store? Is it the level of service that they give? Is it the level of refunds that they accept? Is it the push purchase service they give people? What is the key thing that’s going to make people buy from them if they aren’t the cheapest?
You can also use an app on your mobile to sell and deliver the products.
Another key point of the kind of progress being made through mobile is the fact that your mobile phone now often doubles as your wallet, and payments can easily be made through your mobile phone, through the likes of Apple Pay. And why is this relevant to e-commerce? There’s been studies done to show that people who make cardless payments are shown to buy more than those spending on a card.
This makes intuitive sense. Once you’ve already entered your bank details and your payment details into your phone it’s then much easier for you to select products through a mobile e-commerce site, add them to your basket, and then rather than having to go through the whole checkout process where you enter lots more details you can just simply click that you want to pay and purchase that product. And that removal of those additional stages makes it more likely that you’re going to buy, and it makes it more likely that you’re going to spend more money, which is obviously a benefit for the retailer.
A key consideration for retailers is that you need to make sure that you’re able to handle those mobile transactions and safely look after people’s payment information and data. And safely process those with the APIs and the interface of your payment gateways on your site.
Let’s take a little bit more of a detailed look at how apps can play a role in mobile commerce. They can either be a great point of sale directly for your product, and they can also be a channel for selling other products or goods to engage users.
This plays a little bit back to what we were speaking about around Amazon before where if you can make your app a place where someone goes to buy before they even go to Google, you can collect sales from that channel without having to risk competition from other people that are advertising on Google. You can also collect sales without having to pay advertising to Google to get the sales. However, to give yourself a high likelihood of success you need to have a retail business that people shop at frequently enough so that it’s likely that they will actually download your app, keep it on your phone, and visit it regularly as the first point that they go to when they’re considering making a purchase from the types of goods that you offer.
Alternatively, you need to be able to offer such, either a good buying service, or good buying experience, or such rich content that they’re going to choose to use your app to buy the goods and services from.
A different approach to app economy is having an app that is not primarily focused as a retail app, but it’s primarily focused as an entertainment app. So again, there’s lots and lots of very successful businesses now that are effectively computer games played through apps, and a lot of the time, those apps are completely free to download. But then there’s in-app purchases that users can make to make the overall experience better or to make them progress more quickly. And so again, the model is slightly different there that people aren’t going there with spending money in mind, they’re going there to enjoy whatever service or entertainment the app provides, but then they are choosing to spend some additional money while there to make the overall experience better.Back to Top
Graeme Smeaton is the founder of Royal & Awesome. Along with a proven track record in defining and delivering marketing strategies that drive significant growth and create real shareholder value, Graeme is highly commercial. He has extensive experience managing PLs and other key financial statements, while being an operational board director of AFG Media Ltd, and has experience negotiating with suppliers, distributors and licensing partners.
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ABOUT THIS DIGITAL MARKETING MODULE
The Applied E-Commerce module will introduce the key concepts of effective e-commerce and will teach you how analytics allows for refinement of the model. You will become familiar with the elements of a successful e-commerce website and the process of traffic generation. The module will also introduce you to various sales tactics, including channel selling. Finally, you will recognize how the e-commerce Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems can help you maximize user experiences.
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