Technology is changing the shopping habits of buyers. Compete recently conducted a survey that reported a rapid increase in the number of people using their mobile devices for shopping. In fact, half of the population using smartphones and tablets are being converted into mobile shoppers. And it is just not the convenience of mobility that encourages buyers for mobile shopping as a considerable number of consumers do mobile shopping at home.
Based on the buying trends of the people, it is predicted that mobile market is expected to hit $1.5 trillion in 2013 and the figure is mostly likely to double in 2017, reaching more than $3 trillion. There are various technological developed that contributed to the growing popularity of mobile shopping.
One of such technologies is the image recognition technology that allows buyers to shop for items using their mobile devices by snapping a photo. All you need to do is take a picture of the item you want to buy and the technology will recognize the image and will take you to a website selling the same product. This is one of the main ingredients of any augmented reality retail shopping and is making mobile shopping a popular trend. Image recognition is also using 3D objects these days, though it was initially limited to product catalogues, TV ads and print ads.
The mobile apps, specifically the augmented reality apps for smartphones and tablets, have also proved beneficial for m-commerce. These augmented reality apps put an individual picture on the product, which the buyers need to scan using the app. In return, the augmented reality app will provide information about the product including its ingredients, prices, manufacture and expire date as well as information about its quality, user reviews and other additional data. Brands like Sephora triggered 150% growth in their mobile shopping using such AR technology.
Mobile shopping can also be benefitted by online brand engagement. Many retailers and m-commerce companies are using the mobile version of social media channels like Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter to promote their product offerings to empower brand value. They use tools like opportunity for comments, “Like” buttons and pictures to grow brand awareness.
Thus it is clear that it is worth investing on mobile applications. More than half of the mobile shoppers install at least a shopping application on their tablets and smartphones and many of them using more than one application. And among these shopping apps the most popular are the mobile shopping retailer apps, coupon applications and loyalty card organizers.
Thus, retailers must focus more on creating killer mobile applications for better sales and growth in their m-commerce. And while developing applications to facilitate mobile shopping experience of their consumers, they must make sure that the app is unique. Instead of mirroring your main site, offer some exclusive content through your app to encourage your buyers to download them and use them again and again. Also, the app should be simple and easy to use. Add push notifications to your app and make it social by integrating popular social platforms. Finally, to allow more interaction with your m-commerce site, link the augmented reality app the in-store activities.