“Brands have successfully used mobile apps to help improve loyalty, boost sales, and enrich the overall customer experience. That said, a mobile app has to fit in the company’s overall goals while consolidating its brand loyalty. It must be backed by a strong product and marketing strategy,” – MoFluid.com
Modern commerce has helped to evolve new modes of connecting with customers. These modes include expansive flagship showrooms, retail selling spaces, pop-up kiosks, e-commerce portals, and the ubiquitous e-commerce app. All these devices are designed to sell products and services to customers, but the e-commerce app has emerged as a preferred medium of transaction in modern times. Therefore, brands and businesses must encourage higher levels of customer participation through the use of the e-commerce app.
Businesses must be advised to create and curate a superior user experience through seamless app navigation inside the e-commerce app. This action should be premised on the fact that app users value smooth in-app navigation as a central part of their product experience. In addition, high density product graphics must be deployed inside the apps in a bid to retain and monetise the customer’s attention. These attributes are important in winning new users and retaining the custom of current users. Further, the speed of app operation and the purchase path must be optimised because these are the precursors for higher numbers of mobile transactions. We must note that these actions can be incremental in nature and may contribute to higher numbers of app users in the future.
The use of digital loyalty mechanisms can be considered when businesses wish to gain higher numbers of consumers to use their e-commerce app. Loyalty solutions can be engineered to tag certain pieces of merchandise with an offer from selling merchants. These offers can be refreshed every day of the week in an attempt to draw the consumer’s attention. For instance, a shoe retailer can float an app that displays images and prices of various forms of footwear. Interested customers can view these offerings in the app and peruse the various products. The very act of perusal can originate from multiple customers and this can drive the number of consumers that regularly use an e-commerce app. We must note that these techniques can be incorporated into on-going campaigns that seek to widen the customer base of an e-commerce app.
E-commerce business operators can consider boosting the range of products available on an e-commerce app. This action essentially helps to expand the concept of consumer choice and present wider ranges of merchandise to the consumer. In addition, foreign brands of merchandise can be incorporated into the app in a bid to whet customer appetites. When these techniques are operated in concert, brands and businesses will register an automatic spike in the number of app users. In addition, customer conversations centring on these actions will likely attract the interest of new and potential customers. That said, we must note that brand managers and app architects must work in collaboration to brainstorm techniques that can attract more customers to use an e-commerce app.
An incentive represents a powerful hook in business operations and therefore, brands and businesses that operate an e-commerce app must create incentives to sustain customer interest in these mobile apps. For instance, a business can announce a scheme that rewards customers for using the e-commerce app. The science of analytics can decode the various aspects of customer behaviour in terms of their interaction with the app. The said rewards can be activated when customers register a certain number of hours in app usage. We must note that this works on the premise that customers are more likely to make a purchase when they spend additional time browsing the various offerings on an e-commerce app. Industry observers have noted that the incentivising aspect of this technique will likely encourage more customers to spend their time on an e-commerce app.
The customer engagement of an e-commerce app can be significantly boosted through personalization. In-app notifications can be pushed to particular consumers at set times in a bid to alert them about commercial offers, in-app developments, reward point summaries, etc. These notifications can help the consumer to feel connected with the overall app experience, thereby boosting engagement metrics. We note that this is key to the consumer experience; when a customer feels connected to an e-commerce app, his or her approach and attitude to the said app will register a significant uptick.
Mobile app audiences can be segmented by user behaviour. This can be achieved through the use of mobile app analytics that measure and analyse user behaviour on mobile apps. The heavy users of an e-commerce app can be segmented into a high value category. This category should be targeted with special offers, premium merchandise, bespoke in-app advertisements, and regular discounts. These actions follow the conviction that heavy users are more likely to invest their time and financial resources into shopping expeditions via an e-commerce app. Brands also have the option of canvassing these users to recommend the app to their friends and colleagues. The net outcome of such efforts should empower businesses through the heightened use of an e-commerce app.
The integration of an e-commerce app with social media platforms is an important aspect of boosting customer engagement. The widespread use of ‘shares’ and ‘likes’ must be encouraged in terms of in-app activities. For instance, an app user may click ‘like’ on a certain colour of a product image. This action is transmitted onto social media platforms and triggers a notification for the user’s social media contacts. The net effect of such outcomes is the fact that the said colour and product image gains widespread exposure throughout the social media networks. We may note that this can encourage users to investigate the product and may lead to additional downloads of the e-commerce app.
Every business thrives on customer relationships; apps are no different and therefore, must be architected to seek regular feedback from clients and customers. An e-commerce app should be designed to offer customers a brief poll seeking their inputs in terms of their app browsing experience, their expectations from future iterations of the app, their likes and dislikes in terms of app features and performance, etc. This feature should be designed to elicit and collect every feedback regarding the user experience. We must note that these actions signal business intent to constantly improve app performance in a bid to empower the average app user. Over time, such actions can have the effect of attracting more customers to an e-commerce app.
In the previous paragraphs, we have examined some of the techniques that can help a business to boost app adoption and usage. Mobile e-commerce apps represent the future of online shopping and therefore, every business must work to boost app usage. Apps also represent a certain cultural construct wherein, a business establishment interacts and transacts with customers on their smartphones. This is in sharp contrast to traditional shopping practices wherein, customers and visitors visit the physical business premises in person. That said, we must note the fact that significant scope for improvement exists in terms of app architecture, the visual branding of an app, among other factors. Therefore, brands and businesses should seriously invest in upgrading their e-commerce apps in a bid to embrace the future.