More than likely, you’ve already launched a mobile commerce initiative for your brand. How could you not? Mobile retailing means that your customers have the ability to purchase your merchandise anywhere and at any time. Discussing how a mobile platform contributes to your bottom line would simply be repeating what you and your team have known for some time.
In fact, it may not even surprise you to learn that 75% of your customers are using their smartphones as they walk through your brick-and-mortar operations. After all, most of us have our phones in hand at all times. But what may surprise you is that 25% of your customers are using their phones to shop while in your store - and they may not be purchasing your merchandise.
Because your competitors also understand the importance of creating a mobile shopping experience, they have found a way to gain a foothold in your offline retail spaces via your customer’s phone. And since statistics tell us that 94% of total retail sales are still generated in brick-and-mortar stores, this trend is very much a threat to your bottom line.
Your head of retail operations is probably already combatting this concern on some level. Ensuring that in-store employees are attentive and engaging with customers. But it’s not enough. Your customers are increasingly making mobile shopping a part of their brick-and-mortar experience. Retailers must meet consumers in the space that they are at or risk executing an ineffective omnichannel strategy. Learning where the existing gaps are in order to better merge mobile and on-site retail is a critical next step.
That’s why Stephan Schambach, creator of Demandware and founder of NewStore, wanted to discover how brands were adapting to meet the needs of a mobile-first world. He felt it was important to understand if brands were fully utilizing available technology to create an integrated on- and off-line shopping experience.
NewStore researchers spent over three months with 112 leading retail brands throughout New York and Boston. The end result was the Mobile Retail Report, and the contents will help brands to understand how they can build a more comprehensive mobile strategy - including capturing the attention of the multitasking 25%.
The research scored retailers on the effectiveness of their native apps, their mobile websites and the connectivity of their in-store experiences. It looked at how well these retailers overall were serving customers ability to search and share, have a personalized experience, walk a seamless path to purchase and receive fulfillment support.
The final results shine a light on where retailers need to improve their integrated mobile activity. Some of the gaps were obvious, as researchers found that many of the stores weren’t providing open Wi-Fi for customers. Less evident gaps included; empowering associates with the ability to conduct inventory checks, access customer recommendations and provide fulfillment and exchanges with their own mobile devices.
The report demonstrates areas where retailers need to evolve their mobile strategy, making it more than just another well branded point of purchase. Mobile retailing has the potential to build stronger on-site customer relationships and loosen the hold competing brands have on customers who are browsing their smartphones in-store. In short, the research shows us that it’s time to create a mobile retailing strategy that will engage your customers at all points.
Download the Mobile Retail Report and learn where retailers are missing the mark on bridging the mobile shopping gap.