One of the most profound paradigm shifts that the businesses world is facing today is the steady transition from ecommerce to mobile commerce. Mobile devices have transformed the way consumers shop, review and search for products and services online.
There are officially more than 3.6 billion unique mobile users globally and mobile device penetration in the world market will also continue to rise steadily in the future. With a huge percentage of total sales coming from mobile devices, companies are now doubling their efforts toward building apps to cater to their customers on the go.
Mobile commerce is any kind of commerce, such as buying and selling of goods and services, which is done on a mobile device. These include smartphones, tablets, iPads and any other Web-connected mobile device. Since mobile devices have become a necessity for billions of consumers globally, it is time to improve your mobile commerce strategy.
Here are some of the key mobile commerce trends of 2016:
Mobile apps are dominating the mobile web
With users continuing to spend significantly more time on mobile apps than websites, it will only be a matter of time until the way users interact with a business will be dominated by mobile applications.
Though a well-designed mobile website can be optimized to make it look and feel like a mobile app, it still cannot do the things a native app can do. An app lets you put your business at the fingertips of your customers.
For example, sending push notifications allows consumers to read messages without opening the message. If you enable a push notification for your business application, the application will provide news and updates about your brand, such as latest coupons, promo codes, discounts, etc. The notification will send a message and if a customer opens it, they will be directed to the app for additional for additional information. One of the deficiencies of mobile sites is that they lack push notifications which help re-engage customers.
A mobile app will help a business reach customers within the shortest possible time, and give them instant feedback, which will help the business owner analyze their marketing strategy. With mobile apps, the gap between businesses and customers is narrowed. And it will help the business receive credibility in the market and expand customer base.
The rise of mobile wallet use
The number of consumers using mobile wallets to pay for goods and services at the point of sale will continue to rise with 2016 being a year of significance for the technology. In a study by Retale, more than 50 percent of consumers in the United States indicated they prefer the convenience of paying with mobile wallets, such as Apple Pay, Google Wallet and Samsung Wallet.
A digital wallet works like a traditional leather wallet. However, it has transformed the way consumers pay for things. It is based on encryption software that replaces your old wallet during monetary transactions. The merchant and consumer benefit from the convenience and protection.
A mobile digital wallet will help consumers pay for products, but it will also store their credit card info, bus passes, gift cards and concert tickets. Retailers will reward their customers' loyalty by offering instant discounts, coupons and freebies.
A survey on digital wallet usage from Walker Sands' 2016 Future of Retail Study finds that Google Wallet has been more adopted than Apple Pay. Samsung Wallet was third.
In-store shoppers are using mobile devices
According to recent research; mobile devices not only enhance in-store shopping experiences, but also boost revenue.
Nielsen reported that there is a worldwide demand for mobile options provided that brands offer them. Consumers are willing to use a store Wi-Fi connection to search for product info while they are inside the store.
Search is not dead
A lot of consumers use search engines to search for information on products and services before making purchases. Businesses can leverage this trend by improving mobile search ranking. Therefore, when it comes to planning your online marketing, mobile search should be a main focus. Here is how you can improve your search ranking:
First of all, remember that user experience should come first. If users are impressed, they will personally ask and request to learn more. Invest in a responsive web design (it is when the design of the mobile site responds to the dimensions of the mobile screen).
After that make sure you have quality content. The search engines favor websites containing valuable and relevant content. Websites that are resorting to getting spammy backlinks are penalized.
Don't forget to use the appropriate length of content to allow fast load times. If you want your content to be easily accessible to mobile users, remove anything deemed unnecessary so users can read it on the go.
Lastly, it is important to bear in mind mobile SEO differs from desktop SEO, as it is specifically targeted to the mobile search environment. So you really need to do mobile SEO separately.
Users and developers are becoming increasingly mobile. Businesses must therefore keep pace and maximize their efforts with this growing trend. Advertising in mobile apps and mobile sites is not difficult provided retailers make the most of every opportunity available.
In addition, remember there will be ad blockers. Consumers have grown tired of irrelevant and annoying ads. Keep in mind the relevancy of your ad and what is being served. Think about investing in native advertising campaigns to avoid ad blocking.
When it comes to content marketing, the role of video is becoming increasingly important. Businesses today are realizing that video has an important role to play in the mobile marketing strategy. It is a trick retailers use to capture the consumer's attention and deliver a brand message in a memorable and unique way.
Video marketing is a superb way for companies to stand out from the dozens of marketing strategies being launched every day. A video marketing campaign can help a brand reach new consumers and transform them into loyal customers.
What "They" Want
Right now is the time to ensure that your business is connected with consumers, because 2016 is the year of seamless connectivity. These are the new things popular in mobile commerce in 2016 that will help ensure you are giving your consumers what they want.
Kimber Johnson is the co-founder of ASPEN App Design, which is a sister company of Vanity Point and Pacific App Design. He has worked within the Web development, graphics design, mobile application development, marketing and advertising fields for over 17 years.