The rise of the mobile channel created new opportunities for brands since the smartphone enables the creation of new touchpoints between businesses and consumers extending the buyer’s journey.
Consumers use their mobile for shopping when they perceive a certain level of usefulness and ease of use.
However, since smartphones have become more sophisticated by implementing new features and they now embed bigger screens, consumers rely on them while shopping on-the-go. As a result, mobile devices such as the smartphone have become incredibly convenient for many in accomplishing certain tasks (i.e. check stock availability).
What are the threats and opportunities of mobile?
For the very first time, mobile searches overtook the desktop in 2016. Therefore, Google started focusing on mobile first rather than desktop, in order to favour on-the-go-search. What does this shift mean?
1) Empowered consumer. Since consumers have access to the web on-the-go, they have access to more information about products. For example, they can actually read online reviews about a product to understand whether its quality is as good as claimed. This could result in harming salesperson persuasion power.
2) Showrooming. Consumers in-store behaviour has changed with mobile. There is an incraesing number of people, who pick up their mobile phone while they are standing in a store to compare and find the best price. (Read more about the effects of showrooming in retail here).
3) A new channel. As consumers are using this channel to interact with brands, purchase products, socialise and the like, brands should figure out to what extent they have to invest in meeting customers through this channel. However, trends show that the power mobile channel should not be underestimated, and companies have to create their mobile strategy.
This post was meant to be a brief overview, which introduces some of the main themes of this blog. However, it appears immediately clear that the mobile channel has gained momentum, and it is critical to understand consumer’s mobile behaviour to design a mobile strategy.