At the upcoming Retail Recharged event on 20th October we will be exploring 4 key themes. Connected Customers is the second stream we are exploring and our partner, Mobify tells you more about why this is relevant to all retailers.
Not too long ago, the consumer buying journey was predictable, but time consuming: travel to the high street; visit a few stores; browse through various items; perhaps ask the sales associate a question - then make a purchase.
Increasingly consumers, especially those of the millennial generation, are demanding a much shorter buying journey, one which takes just a few touches from discovery to collecting or receiving their delivered product.
This has lead to the creation of the mobile first consumer, who values convenience over all else. Fuelled by the growth of mainstream companies like Uber and the on-demand economy, they are now accustomed to getting what they want, when they want it. They’re always connected to brands, whether via social media, e-commerce websites or physical stores, thereby creating a significant opportunity for retailers, but one which also poses some huge challenges. How to create a unified brand across multiple touch points, whilst also staying relevant and standing out. The consumer buying journey may now be shorter, but for retailers it is now more complex than ever.
Only a few retailers have adapted and fully met these new consumer expectations, have enjoyed a distinct competitive advantage and experienced significant growth. In the future, it will be imperative for all retailers, to adapt - otherwise they face the prospect of being ignored or deemed less desirable by the consumer.
As can be seen by the statistics, it's not just the millennial generation whose buying habits have shifted. According to comScore, almost 60% of the time, online consumers shop from a smartphone or tablet rather than from a desktop or laptop. Nielsen tells us that 87% of smartphone and tablet owners use a mobile device for shopping activities, and even more interesting, they use these devices for much more than completing a transaction. They use these devices for locating stores, checking prices, researching before they buy and reading and posting reviews. July 2015 research shows 54% of shoppers use mobile to check competitive prices whilst in store and 48% to look up product information.
So we know consumers no longer follow a predictable buying pattern - their buying journey could take them from home to coffee shop to the match to train to store and back again. Their expectations are high - they expect retailers to know where they are, follow them seamlessly, anticipate their needs and deliver what they want when they want it. To meet these expectations, retailers must treat mobile devices as more than a desktop with a small screen. They must treat them as their link to the always-connected consumer. They must use all the capabilities of all mobile devices to fully and creatively engage their customers – through mobile web, native apps, push messaging, location services, voice, imaging, payments and more.
Mobify delivers technology and services to help retailers engage their connected consumers and thus increase revenue online and in-store. Innovative companies around the world including Ann Taylor, Crocs, Carnival Cruises, Bosch, Superdry, Eddie Bauer, Tommy Bahama and Beyond the Rack have chosen Mobify. Learn more at www.mobify.com.