written by Cristina Fernandez
Mobile devices have become extremely popular in the developed countries reaching high consumer usage shares such as in Sweden during 2016 with a 73% of the market. In some developed countries, adults use their smartphone or tablets more than 2 hours per day. In addition, it is becoming more common to use your smartphone in front of the TV which steals the attention from the traditional commercials. Overall, smartphones are changing the game by gaining share from computers and laptops at an unbelievable rate. This extensive access to gadgets and mobile apps is leading companies to focus increasing amounts of investment towards mobile marketing.
As a marketer you must reach at the very least a decent level of mobile friendly adaptation to succeed in today’s market. This adaptation includes allowing your consumers to access your website via smartphones which, therefore, requires a responsive mobile friendly web design. In fact, about 64% of people make a purchase via a smartphone just because it was the closest at hand at the time of purchase. Other basic mobile adaptation is for instance the online shop features that if are not mobile friendly, may annoy the consumer and ultimately lead you to lose a sale.
The next step in mobile integration is related to the second reason why consumers purchase online. This second main reason is the availability of an app from the company they wanted to purchase from. Apps allow companies to gather more regular consumers and clearer purchase and behavior data. Apps in general are believed to drive better and more stable sales into the business since they simplify the purchase process and usually come together with a series of advantages to the users. They require a bigger investment, but they are very valuable when your business has an online shop or you are interested in offering a new specific service. The biggest difficulty related to a company’s apps is to get the app downloaded, which may be difficult if no specific need is solved with the app. Companies interested in creating an app should find what can be offered to their consumers that is not offered through their other channels. The simplest way is to offer special prices or discounts to the app users which in addition creates the feeling of a community.
Some of the best channels to attract consumers to your adapted website are email newsletters and social media accounts. A newsletter is the third reason why consumers purchase products online with their smartphone. It is direct communication that gets to those consumers who deliberately want to receive news from your brand. It also reaches the consumer’s smartphone where it can be opened 24/7. Once you have reached the consumer, if you propose a good offer or a call to action, the user can respond with one click. In a similar way, consumers are investing increasing amounts of time on their smartphones connected to social media. For instance in Sweden, 54% of consumers use their smartphone strictly to access social media. A good social media strategy can interest consumers to your brand and lead them to your website. Therefore, in order to attract meaningful interactions it is imperative to drive your audience to your email newsletter and social media into a mobile friendly website. A purchase is best done through a simplified process, i.e. something that a mobile customized website or app can offer.
Going one step forward, you may have noticed there are more consumers that seem to go to shops only to take a look but they do not purchase anything. These consumers are probably buying online instead thanks to the discounts of some apps. This circumstance is in fact the fourth biggest reason why consumers purchase online. You can do the same complement with the push up notifications in an app with localization in the shop or QR codes to your website to find out the special offer while in your shop. Smartphones allow consumers to research products or buy them online while in the shop. Many mobile integrated companies are starting to see their physical shops as showrooms for their products instead of selling places because they are trying to encourage consumers to buy the same products online giving advantages to the consumer who does. The reasons behind this tendency are the data gathering from consumers and the targeting of new consumers for preferred online communication channels such as social media or email marketing.
Other features that mobile marketing allows include geo-localization services, corporate games, online commercials on more devices, or direct phone calls from the search engines which could have different marketing advantages for your business.
Overall mobile integration has the following advantages:
It is not a secret that it is very difficult to get consumers to try to reach for you, instead of you for them. That is why it is extremely important for you to become as accessible as you can. You need to be there if the consumer is looking for you because every time you are not there you are losing a sale.
To sell on the internet was innovative more than ten years ago, nowadays it is considered a basic thing that surprisingly is not completely extended. Many companies have gone ahead to sell their products online but still find it hard to market their products online. Mobile marketing includes a growing share of the online sales and it can open new doors for sales that complement better with the new online communication methods than the desk-designed websites. In other words, it is inefficient to have an online shop and different online communication channels if your site is not mobile friendly.
- Community driven
To get and maintain the consumers’ loyalty is the ultimate marketing challenge. One of the best ways to do so is to create a community around your brand and something a community always needs is a “meeting point” and some shared advantages. In the digital era these meeting points are commonly the websites but, with the increasing popularity of smartphones, the new meeting points are the mobile apps where the consumer gets exclusive content and offers from the brand.
- Information gathering
The more visits you get to your website and the longer they stay on your website, the more information you can get from your consumers. With this useful information, you can use it to better market your products and services. You can take advantage from data such as which social media works better for each one of your product categories or where on your website your consumers spend more time. The more people you lead to your website, the more information you will gather.Also if you have a consumer subscription program, you can find out the demographics of your loyal consumers and maybe use their email to reach them with personalized email newsletters.
- Strategic advantage
If you have not adapted your website for mobile devices because you did not feel it is necessary in your industry and none of your competitors have done it yet – go for it! The pioneer advantage is there for you to take. Make your consumers see your more innovative side and make them feel that you appreciate their loyalty and their time by delivering content on their preferred channel.
- Informed consumers
Consumers expect to have all the information that they need, in the moment they need it, with just a few clicks. Being accessible to them is a mission which marketers should not hesitate. Quite the contrary from other communication methods, your website or app is an information hub that your consumers have consciously chosen to see, which will allow them to gather the information they need about your products or services when they prefer. For any marketing team it is very valuable that a consumer has a comfortable user experience when researching about your brand as it will transmit positive feelings such as professionalism, trust and availability.
- More successful clicks
As a web user it is very annoying to deal with a desktop-designed website when you view it on your smartphone. The letters are too small, the paragraphs do not adapt to your screen, you are forced to zoom in and out, etc. When your goal is to lead a consumer to your shop or to get them to buy something at your website, you must ensure the consumers are guided through the experience you want them to see which in the end will lead to a conversion and a happy consumer. The inconvenience in the usage can make consumers exit your website too soon, so pay attention to the bounce rate metrics to make sure you are providing your consumers with a better user experience.
- Better consumer service
With mobile marketing many barriers to reach your consumers are broken. Take the chance and encourage your consumers to review your app and products and let them tell you what they look for or want you to do better. Get the consumers engaged and connected with the brand to keep improving with them.
Do you also think that mobile integrated websites or applications are vital for your marketing strategy? Feel free to share your experience about using mobile marketing to grow your business by leaving a comment.