Isn’t it amazing the way the Internet has changed the way we experience the world around us? It’s changed the way we interact with friends and family, how we network, even how we shop. Think about how Cyber Monday has eclipsed the mad dash at Toys R Us on Black Friday every holiday season. We’re convinced that mobile shopping will be the next big thing in convenience shopping and we’re not the only ones.
According to eMarketer, almost 100 million U.S. consumers will be on the mobile web this year. That’s an estimated increase of a whopping 25 percent. eMarketer forecasts that by 2015 more than three in five mobile users will be using the mobile web, and they won’t all be playing Angry Birds.
Mobile shopping has really hit the ground running for companies that are relying on tools like Microsoft Tag to reach out to their consumer base. The accessibility and convenience that Tag provides mobile shoppers can be outright mind boggling. The mobile element to Tag campaigns not only helps to grab the target audience’ attention and key them in to the product or company, but it provides super convenient access to valuable information or shopping opportunities.
It is important for companies to really think about how tools like Tag would work best for their business. Thinking about your specific target demographic is key. As eMarketer notes, mobile Internet usage is likely to remain strongest in younger adults; however, usage is on the rise with older adults as well. Smartphone sales are up and aren’t likely to go in any other direction, according to a study by comScore released in May. Prosper Mobile Insights asked mobile users what they use their smartphones for and Internet usage came in second only to texting.
As more people become accustomed to relying on mobile Internet for things like coupons, finding local restaurants, entering contests and shopping, and companies become more experienced at using the mobile Internet and mobile optimized webpages to grow their business, the convenience provided by tools such as Tag will become part of the everyday shopping experience. Already, Oracle and ATG research found that three in ten U.S. consumers have made at least one purchase on their mobile device. That number is up 123 percent more than the 13 percent of consumers who had made a purchase on their mobile device back in November 2009.
Here are some suggestions to help retailers avoid a few pitfalls that might throw them off their game as they integrate mobile tools:
- Keep that target demographic in mind.
- Be sure you have a mobile optimized website that is clean, visually exciting and easy for your customers to use and know what they’re getting.
- Think about ways you can have Tag create repeat engagement with your customers. Don’t send out just one coupon and then ignore all those valuable connections for months, you don’t want your fans to forget about how clever you were to reach out to them through their phones.
- Keep things new, interesting and engaging, and people will always come back for more.
Lastly, but most importantly, be sure that the implementation of your mobile campaign goes off without a hitch and make sure that your 2D Code is crystal clear. That way, when your customers do go for the scan they get what they’ve been promised, either a sleek mobile website where they can buy your product, an exciting giveaway, a valuable coupon or top reviews by your faithful fans. With Tag you don’t need to worry about blurry barcodes or not being able to update your mobile optimized website. The reliability and consistency of Microsoft Tag is practically goof proof.
How important do you think mobile commerce will be for retailers? Let us know with your comments below or on Facebook or Twitter.