It’s pretty amazing what our phones can do nowadays. Many companies are trying to keep pace with them by responding to the demand for more mobile-accessible sites. The same can be said for social media on mobile devices as well. Not only are users focusing more on their mobile devices to access the internet, they are also often sidestepping Google and the search results as well.
By 2021, it’s predicted that 45 percent of ecommerce sales will be through a mobile platform. With so much focus on mobile usage and marketing, it’s no longer a question of if your store and products are easily accessible through mobile — but instead, how much is it going to cost you if your site and online business aren’t fully responsive?
We’ve already seen how social platforms like Facebook have had to adapt and change their business model thanks to the massive push to mobile, so, how does this change the landscape of online shopping as well? Another important question to ask is, what does it mean for ecommerce business owners?
For anyone that’s just getting started in the world of online sales or marketing, be sure to check out these top 50 ecommerce tips for new store owners. In addition to the tips provided in that article, we’ve also listed five predictions for mobile ecommerce, as we look to the future of what the expanding mobile world will do for shopping sites everywhere.
Holiday shopping is going to be dominated by mobile.
Holidays are already busy shopping times and lately, the use of mobile to get through that shopping list is skyrocketing. Mobile allows for a customer to shop whenever they have a moment, which people never seem to have enough of during the holidays. It makes sense that people would turn to mobile during busy times, as it gives them a chance to get things done wherever they are.
Small ecommerce stores will step up when it comes to mobile.
Small businesses need to utilize every avenue they can. Mobile is the wave of the future and they should be riding that wave. If you’re using a site to help you build your ecommerce store, make sure they have a mobile option for customers to use. They may provide free website themes and 24-hour customer support, but if they don’t have a way for people to purchase things via mobile, you may need to look elsewhere.
Augmented reality will be available through mobile.
Some businesses have already started this and are seeing positive results. Augmented reality is a neat way for retailers to help the customers shop. Through a mobile app, customers can see how certain items would fit in their homes, or even how various items might fit together. This makes shopping convenient and adds a bit more flair to something as mundane as buying bulk toilet paper.
While there are many ideas and fun concepts in the world for how augmented reality will shape the future of online selling and marketing, it’s still quite some time away. The world is finally getting smart phones and mobile devices in the hands of users around the world, but it will still be some time before everyone has a smart headset on for internet browsing.
Refocus your advertising efforts on social media and remarketing.
We already know that social media is a huge component of mobile usage and marketing. With self-serve advertising platforms like Facebook ads, Twitter ads, and Google Adwords in place, and allowing for ‘remarketing’, this provides ecommerce owners with an amazing opportunity to target their exact audiences. A perfect example of this can be seen when someone visits an online store and doesn’t make a purchase on their first visit. Then as they browse through various other sites online, they start to see ads for that same site. Not only are these ads extremely effective and targeted, they are also most cost effective and have been proven to yeild a high ROI in the process.
Mobile shopping, desktop checkout.
There are a few ecommerce sites that assist customers who do their browsing and picking on mobile but make payment on their desktop. For customers that don’t like storing payment information on their phone or simply prefer to make payment once they’ve given it some thought, this is a helpful support system. Shoppers can make their choices on one device, then when they get to their second device, their cart is waiting for them to finalize everything.
With the increasing demand for mobile platforms, as well as the ever changing face of business, there can be a lot with which to keep up. Some apps and online stores will offer all the bells and whistles like augmented reality and multiscreen shopping, while others may stick to the basics. Regardless of where you fall in that spectrum, if you’re looking to start or expand your ecommerce business, it’s important to have a mobile option for the future.
At some point, you may be able to get the fancier pieces so your customers can have a truly extraordinary mobile shopping experience but first things first. Having a mobile option for your customers can help you make more money and help your customers buy what they need when they need it. With all the evidence pointing toward a mobile future, it would be remiss of any business to ignore what’s expected in the next few years. As these four predictions for mobile ecommerce demonstrate, the wave of the future has already started and you need to be in on it.