Heart displays and candy confections aside, Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to court your e-commerce customers. For starters, shoppers are already more likely to shop online than trek to the stores in the winter weather. Plus, the immediacy and spontaneity of online shopping attracts customers buying everything from groceries to gadgets.
However, brands have to work even harder in our increasingly crowded and competitive online marketplace to deliver a seamless customer experience. Cupid’s arrow points to these 3 tips for maximizing your brand’s e-commerce platform all year long.
Optimize mobile shopping capabilities
A study conducted by dscout found that people touch their phones an average of 2,617 times every day—with the heaviest users clocking in at 5,427 touches a day. That adds up to over a million clicks, taps and swipes per year.
So, what are smartphone users doing, exactly? Dscout’s list of the top 10 “touchiest app” categories put games in first place, and shopping in second. More consumers are becoming mobile shoppers, making it vital for brands to offer apps as well as user-friendly website interfaces.
Making mobile shopping easy also helps brands benefit from last-minute gift buying. For example, most consumers don’t shop for Valentine’s Day with the same foresight as Christmas, which draws them to the immediacy—and convenience—of mobile shopping.
Communicate via mobile messaging
Sensing a theme here? According to this Transactional Messaging Consumer Report, a whopping 70% of customers prefer to receive service-based messages to their mobile phones. Moreover, these messages have a near-perfect 99% open rate.
The mobile channel lets brands reach and interact with consumers the same way they communicate with their peers. A simple, concise text from CVS saying a prescription is ready is much more convenient than a phone call or voicemail message. Getting a text from your Uber driver saying they’re across the street from the pickup location is efficient and easy when you’re waiting in a noisy restaurant.
Optimizing mobile messaging for shipping information, order status updates, ETAs and more helps companies capitalize on their relationship with consumers. It’s an opportunity to further develop their branding and tone while providing a valued service.
Accurately predict what consumers want next
Online shopping can be a time-consuming endeavor, one made more frustrating by bogus (not to mention repetitive) product recommendations. Most e-commerce sites suggest items based on previous purchases, but some fall short, leaving consumers to sift through thousands of pages of inventory.
Now, a Montreal-based tech startup is taking predictions to the next level. Propulse uses machine learning and image recognition software to give shoppers relevant recommendations. It goes deeper than looking at what you’ve already purchased, or what other customers that ordered the same item bought too. The platform’s AI technology analyzes data to understand consumers’ style and taste as well as shopping habits.
According to a recent Adweek poll, “87% of shoppers say their in-store purchase decisions are influenced by store associates.” Using Propulse’s type of technology enhances the level of customization and thus the human experience for online shopping. By replicating the same personalized shopping experience a consumer gets in-store, brands will attract more consumers on their e-commerce channels.