There’s little question that a mobile-first strategy is essential for any retailer that sells online. However, many retailers today are challenged to develop an exceptional mobile shopping experience. Small screens, hundreds of popular devices, many vendors and competing standards mean that mobile shopping is often a lowest common denominator approach, but it doesn’t need to be this way. Technology can greatly simplify building responsive, shoppable, mobile-optimized sites that use the capabilities of popular mobile platforms and provide a rich and engaging experience for users.
Mobile commerce currently accounts for one-third of e-commerce sales, with projections for mobile-generated revenue to increase 177 percent to $109.44 billion from 2015 to 2016. Add to that the proliferation of cheaper smartphones and 5G network bandwidth that’s just around the corner, and it’s clear the retail sector must adapt to accommodate the mobile transition. However, there’s a fault line in these figures. They’re a last-click analysis that only paints a picture of the user who completes a purchase on their mobile device. While this is a measure of sales and reason enough for every retailer to develop a mobile presence, it tells us little about the consumer path to purchase.
Recent research by GfK indicates that up to 40 percent of consumers start their retail journey on one device and complete it on another — and up to as many as three others. Mobile has produced a situation where consumers are, in effect, much more spontaneous. They snack on content, browse and shop, and research and check inventory levels to meet a need that’s felt in the moment. As a consequence, grabbing consumers’ attention and immersing them in your products right at the moment that they land on your site by being bold and engaging with rich content is absolutely vital. Your content also needs to be immediately shoppable so that with a single click or touch, the user is already into a retail journey.
This article originally appeared April 1, 2016 on TotalRetail.com.