How to Snag the Mobile Shopper

cell-phone-1While more and more consumers are researching products and comparing prices on their mobile devices most showroomers are not using their device to finalize a purchase. According to a recent Forrester Research survey report, only 13% surveyed said they used a smartphone or tablet to actually purchase a product.

According to the report, Forrester used data from two surveys to compile the report, the North American Technolographics Retail Online Survey and the North American Technolographics Retail Online Benchmark Recontact Survey.

So why are consumers not buying with mobile? According to the How US Consumers Shop on Mobile Devices report, many shoppers are hitting mobile barriers such as nonoptimized mobile sites, concerns over mobile payments, and “patchy” mobile connections.

In fact, retailers are having so much trouble securing the sale over mobile that the average conversion rate is only 1%, according to the report.

Instead of making a purchase, consumers are using these devices for research, to read a product review, find store locations and store hours, and to check product availability online, according to the report.

While the number of mobile shoppers who buy on their phones or tablets is relatively small, some are buying. According to the report of those surveyed, 22% purchase apparel, 21% pick up event tickets, and 20% make hotel reservations.

So what can retailers do to capture those mobile shoppers? The Forrester report recommends that retailers “create offerings that leverage the unique capabilities for mobile devices.” Consumers want to venture seamlessly through the cross-channel experience and it is retailer’s jobs to make sure that happens.  Since mobile shopping began to take shape, shoppers expect every site to be mobile optimized.

According to the report, “shoppers expect retailers to provide the same assortment of products and services” on the mobile site as they do on the PC optimized site.

Mobile sites, according to the report, must also take advantage of tablet and smartphone capabilities by also offering GPS location services, high-definition video displays, and tap-to-call functions.

Forrester also states that retail apps should be designed for the shopper in mind. The mobile devices should be used to engage with consumers. According to the report, loyal customers are more likely to download retailer apps and to engage with those customers retailers need to make it a more personalized experience by offering  mobile coupons and discounts.

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