Think your customers are happy with with your mobile shopping experience? Think again.
The Internet performance experts (and our friends) at Dyn recently commissioned a survey on consumer mobile shopping habits and expectations. At the risk of sounding too Buzzfeedy, some of what you’re about to read may surprise you and may even shock you. But, the research really illustrates there is still plenty of progress to be made when it comes to today’s e-tailers creating a truly effective (and profitable!) mobile shopping experience.
The In-Person Experience Still Means Something…For Now
Consumers in the United States, Australia, Germany, Malaysia, the Netherlands, and Singapore said they prefer shopping in-store as opposed to online or mobile. Consumers in China, Hong Kong, India, Israel, and the United Kingdom primarily prefer an online shopping experience with mobile falling into “a very distant third” for those people across all 11 countries surveyed.
Just when we thought brick-and-mortar was dead here in the States, it appears that we still like that feeling of seeing, touching, and eyeing up something we want to buy in person. However, note that the response was ‘prefer’ and not ‘will only’. With competitive pricing, it’s silly for today’s consumer to avoid even a little online research to see if a better price if available.
But mobile falling behind both in-store and online in terms of buying preferences? Now that is interesting. Go anywhere and it seems like the smartphone is now a part of our physical being, but even our technological addiction isn’t enough to make phones the go-to mechanism for purchases. Is mobile simply just a research and high-tech bookmark tool as opposed to a cash machine for today’s online retailers? Perhaps it’s screen size, the process of paying, or the mobile user experience that just isn’t cutting it.
The Opportunity for Mobile
The report makes it clear that even with the hesitancy, the mobile experience should still be a major part of any brand’s ecommerce strategy. According to mobile industry experts Fierce Wireless, global shoppers are expected to spend $119 billion on goods and services via mobile devices in 2015. That number represents 8% of the total ecomm market.
China leads the way as nearly 80% of consumers surveyed said they bought something via a mobile device in 2014. Of that group, 20% are weekly mobile shoppers. Looking ahead, U.S. consumers said they are four times more likely to buy more via mobile in the year ahead with China and India leading the way in mobile purchases.
Why should you care, dear retailer? If getting a bigger slice of a $119 billion pie doesn’t get you interested in evaluating your mobile shopping experience, I’m not sure what will – especially if you sell in either China or India. If you’re strictly stateside, take advantage of the increased familiarity and comfort level that Americans are going to have with buying via their devices. Not sure where to start or where to look for help? I know of one company that would be happy to give you an assist.
No Bars? No Buys.
That irritation level we get when our WiFi drops or we go into a mobile dead zone is one of the reasons more business isn’t done with mobile phones. The Dyn report says that 85% of all consumers they surveyed “expect the same quality and speed of performance when shopping on mobile devices as they do when shopping online.” The top countries for that expectation? China (98%), Malaysia (91%), Hong Kong (90%), and India (90%).
Relying on an Internet or WiFi connection that is completely out of your control can be frustrating. Here, you’ve gone and spent money on a new site and PPC ads that hit the right consumer at the right time and thanks to a spotty connection, you can’t complete a sale. Unfortunately, that’s part of our daily lives where patience is not often held as a virtue, and our attention spans grow smaller by the day.
That’s why when you develop your new website and shopping experience, optimize the page load time, especially for mobile. Use services like Dyn that can help you connect your users to the closest data center to them, regardless of where they find themselves in the world. Create your own version of a 1-click buying process to get buyers in and out easily. Find a web development shop/agency that understands about delivering the best user experience so you can sell more. You might not be able to overcome every bad Internet connection, but for those that you can, take advantage and optimize your mobile shopping experience.
This report has a lot of other great information that any online retailer should be using, so I recommend giving it a read. Brands have an opportunity to actually get ahead of the mobile ecommerce curve, and when it comes to smartphone use these days, how often can you say that?