Recently, we’ve been seeing two major trends emerge in e-commerce: mobile buying (m-commerce) and personalization marketing. Where do the two overlap?
Mobile purchasing, otherwise known as m-commerce, is the future of retail. Mobile isn’t just the number one marketing method; it’s become one of the top sales techniques as well. In fact, m-commerce sales are anticipated to make up to 44.7% of total U.S. ecommerce sales this year compared to 39.6% in 2018.
Customers are using their mobile devices to research and compare products, both from their homes and while in physical storefronts. They will even see a product in-store and purchase it online from their mobile devices. They’re using their mobile devices to make purchases at a higher rate than in the past, likely because of the increase in secure payment options and ease of the checkout process. Learn more about the mobile movement in ecommerce here.
Personalization is when companies acknowledge each customer as an individual. They’re more than a “persona” or audience. Each consumer gets a personalized experience based on their unique data, interests, and browsing/purchasing history. At this point in e-commerce, customers demand and expect personalization.
Nearly 51% of consumers expect companies will anticipate their needs, make relevant suggestions, and tailor their purchasing experience whenever they make contact. And this trend towards personalization is showing significant results. 88% of marketers report that they’ve seen measurable improvements in their marketing metrics and conversion rates thanks to personalization tactics. Get all the info you need on how to use personalization in ecommerce here.
85% of users say their mobile devices are a central part of their everyday life, representing their connectivity to the world around them. They feel that their mobile device is actually an extension of themselves. Because of this, they feel closer to those brands that better meet their individual needs through the mobile device, as opposed to just being treated like “another” customer.
Customers want their phones and brands to talk to them specifically.
If you get the mobile experience right, you can completely dominate your sphere. You’ll capture the strong mobile market and instantaneously beat out your competitors. And the way to grab the mobile customer is by personalizing their experience.
So how can you personalize the mobile buying experience to attract and engage a highly profitable audience?
Use Personalization Technology
Personalization is about delivering relevant offers and content based on location, preferences, previous browsing, and purchasing. Technology has made it easier than ever to gather this data and create personalized campaigns without putting financial pressure on your business. And this tech works especially well on mobile devices, where customers are frequently browsing and are less aware of the “cookies” that are being used on the web and social media.
So, someone comes to your site and they look at all of your blue sneakers. Your technology gathers this data. The next time they visit that site, your homepage can show off all blue sneakers. It can show blogs about how to select the right sneaker. Then, the next time they go on social media, they might even see a sponsored post for a blue sneaker they clicked on a few times.
Your site can even show additional products they might like. You know that people who typically buy blue sneakers also buy black laces. So, you can show them black laces to help increase their experience.
This kind of technology creates a tailored shopping experience. It boosts conversion, increases your units per sale, encourages repeat purchases, and engenders brand loyalty.
Personalize Across All Channels.
Most personalization technologies enable you to collect, store, and utilize customer data—no matter where that customer shows up. Whether they’re browsing your mobile site, desktop site, social media, emails, or even in-store, you want to keep their experience consistent—and personalized.
Users switch between devices and interactions constantly throughout the day. It’s your job to keep them engaged no matter where they are and how they’re interacting with your brand. This “omnichannel” approach means you create a consistent brand as well as a consistent personalization strategy for each person. You not only want to stay true to your brand through every avenue, but you also want to track each customer’s usage and preferences throughout their touchpoints with your business.
Research shows that businesses with omnichannel strategies have 91% greater customer retention rates compared to businesses that don’t. That’s because customers know exactly what to expect from your brand. They know that a product they were looking at on their mobile device, they can easily purchase when they come to their desktop. They know that when they walk in a store, your sales associates already have their preferences and purchasing history ready to go.
Customers want to connect with their brands. This means maintaining a consistent brand while making them feel special, unique, and wanted.
The majority of mobile usage is searching for local businesses. In fact, 40% of mobile searches have local intent. On-the-go users are looking for local places that they can visit and purchase from in the near future. 88% of consumers who use mobile to search for a local business call or go to that business within 24 hours. Get more info on mobile search here.
This opens up a huge opportunity for your mobile campaign. If you are a local business, you can assume (and track the data) that a strong majority of your searchers are within your community. This makes it easier for you to build a mobile campaign that attracts these local searchers. You know what your community is interested in, and you can create your site and social media posts effectively.
This is “partial” personalization. You’re personalizing to your audience, but not necessarily to each individual customer. But, this is a good option if you’re a local business without the option to implement data collecting software yet.
This also gives you the potential to create highly personalized campaigns for each visitor. If someone walks in your store, you can pair them with their mobile device. You can “follow” that user, so you can create a seamless experience on mobile, on desktops, on email, and even in-store.
Knowing your local audience is one of the best means to personalize the omnichannel experience.
Offer Mobile Exclusive Coupons
Reward your mobile customers with an exclusive mobile-only offer. When your mobile site is activated, they see a pop-up with a discount code or coupon. Let them know that they’ve unlocked an offer only available through mobile and that it’s one of the best discounts they’ll get.
This works well because consumers see that they have an exclusive, mobile-only offer. They’re more likely to make faster purchasing decisions and convert right then and there because they’re afraid they might lose that offer. This urgency is likely to boost your conversion rate and sales.
You also have the option to offer a mobile code they can use in store. If you are looking for more foot traffic in your physical storefront, you can turn the mobile browser into a physical shopper by giving them a discount. So, they open your mobile site and you give them a code that they can scan in-store. This works especially well if you’re focusing on building a local mobile marketing strategy.
Personalization is the best way to attract and engage your audience. It shows that you care about your customers by creating a more intimate relationship between user and brand. Personalization shows you have an immediate understanding of your user, which creates a strong impression that enhances the likelihood of conversion. It also shows that you are loyal to their needs, and customers will respond with loyalty to your brand and repeat purchases.
When you personalize the mobile experience, you get a double whammy of benefits. You’re telling your mobile customers that you know who they are and you’re ready to meet their needs. Whether they’re local or online, your customers will appreciate the ease to find products that appeal to them, content that speaks to them, and a brand that cares about them.
How do you engage your mobile audience? Are you using personalization techniques? Leave us a comment below!