We are heading towards to the holiday season and it should be fairly obvious that mobile will be playing a large role in every customer’s shopping activities. According to eMarketer, ecommerce sales were over $50 billion during November and December of last year and this year’s forecast breaks the $60 billion mark.
Mobile is driving the increase in ecommerce as more and more customers have started to shop through their mobile devices. These devices are helping customers purchase goods from anywhere and at anytime and are becoming an essential shopping tool. Over 50% of smartphone owners use their phone inside physical stores for support and direction on purchasing decisions during the holidays.
So that leaves us with one question. Is your mobile app ready for the holidays? Customers are looking to buy and the easier you make it for them the more success you’ll have. Here are 4 tips to ensure you take advantage of the holiday rush and hit your sales goals.
Optimizing the Check-Out
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The easier it is to make a purchase from your mobile app the more likely it will be made. Here are a couple of things every mobile app can do to make this conversion process as frictionless as possible.
- Have a Facebook, Google+, and Twitter login option - Everyone has a preference and the more choices you give the better. Once someone is logged in you can require less information for purchases making the entire process more seamless. These integrations are incredibly easy to do so there is no reason to leave them out.
- Minimize taps - The less the customer has to touch the screen the better. Use the correct keyboards for the information you’re requiring (normal keyboard for text and number keyboard for enter credit card information etc.). Here’s how to do it on iOS and Android.
- Simple and painless - If you already have all the information required for the purchase, make buying another item as simple as tap, confirm. Amazon’s 1-click purchase button is a prime example of this on the web. If you can adapt it to mobile you’ll see results.
Everyone Is Looking for a Deal
Mobile apps have become the ultimate resource for coupon shopping. There are entire apps whose only focus is to help you find and use coupons. You may be wary that that too many coupons will result in a loss of profit but all signs point otherwise.
People who use digital coupons actually spend more than the average customer and make more frequent shopping trips. Everyone loves the feeling of getting a good deal and coupons are often the final push that convinces a customer to make the purchase. Lastly, mobile coupons are also a great tactic for bringing customers into your brick and mortar stores (if you have one). The coupons serve as daily or weekly reminders about your products (and the great deals!) during the year and especially during the holidays.
In-Store Assistance and Engagement
Optimizing your mobile app to assist customers who are already in your store is a powerful tactic to engage customers and close those deals. Last year, Macy’s updated their app to create an exceptional in-store experience for their customers on Black Friday.
One key feature of the Macy’s app helped guide customers to the different products on sale around the store. A mobile app can provide information on products, compare items, and even help the customer check-out. Such tactics provide an experience that more and more customers are yearning for.
You must have a solid support system for your mobile customers. During the holiday rush you don’t want a small bug to ruin the mobile shopping experience for all your customers. One of the core tenets of providing exceptional support is being prepared. It’s impossible to create a solution or experience that requires zero support, but it isn’t impossible to be prepared to handle any problem that arises.
For mobile apps, having a direct connection within the app to your mobile customers is essential to being prepared. You don’t want to find out about a problem from the app store. By that point it is often too late and you’ve received a negative review as well. Having a line of communication straight to your customers through your app lets you hear about problems right away and allows you to provide support immediately where they are, inside the app. Even better, instead of a negative review in the app store, a customer who has been taken care of is more likely to leave a positive review afterwards.
What are your plans to ensure a successful holiday season? Any other helpful tips that I missed? Share your thoughts in the comments.
This article was originally posted on the Being Apptentive blog.