The importance of mobile commerce continues to grow. According to research company Statista, just under 30% of all UK e-commerce transactions will be carried out via smart-phones and tablets in 2015. Meanwhile, US mobile users are expected to account for 27.7% of total e-commerce sales.
This has huge implications. As consumers buy more products and services via mobile devices they will quite properly expect a quality of experience comparable to PCs. Thus sellers who have previously focused their customer experience strategies on the “traditional” internet customer must now factor mobile into the equation.
But what does that mean in practice and what does the rise of mobile mean for customer experience management? Here are five key facts that you should consider.
1) Conversion is not a given
Mobile conversion rates still lag PCs and laptops. According to a 2014 survey “add-to-cart” rates for PCs and laptops came in at 8.52% in the final quarter of the year, feeding through to a conversion rate of 2.58%. It was a similar story on tablets.
However, in the case of smart-phones, the add-to-cart rate was just 4.70% with conversion at 0.8%. iPhones in general performed slightly better than Android phones but in all cases the conversion rates were low.
2) The barriers to conversion are higher on smart-phones
The figures suggest that the barriers to conversion are higher on mobile phones. Advances in network technology – and in particular the arrival of 4G -have removed many of the performance and speed issues but the fact remains that smart-phones present challenges to site designers. Consumers are comfortable with small screens, but the design of mobile sites must ensure that the good usability we all expect when navigating a site via a PC is replicated on the smart-phone.
3) Internet users are intolerant of poor experience
A survey published this year by re-targeting company Criteo – The State of Mobile Commerce – found that 41% of internet users would go elsewhere if they couldn’t find the information they needed.
This is a particularly critical factor when customers are using a small screen. When accessing sites via a PC or Tablet, key information – or links to it – is usually clearly visible. On five-inch screens it is all too often hidden away, triggering frustration and abandonment.
4) Poor experience has a wide-ranging impact
Transactions on smart-phones and tablets are on the rise, but that’s not the whole story. Some customers use the mobile internet to buy, but many more use it for research, which will ultimately lead to a purchase, either in a store or at home on another device. A poor experience reduces the prospect of a sale at a later time or date.
5) You may not be aware of customer frustration
Mobile commerce is relatively new and many customers are taking their first tentative steps towards using smart-phones as transactional tools. The frustrations and barriers to conversion that they encounter – anything from hard-to-find information to poorly performing software – probably won’t prompt them to ring a call centre or send an e-mail complaint or query. Instead they will go elsewhere.
As such it is hugely important to track the experience of mobile customers in order to identify, quantify and rectify barriers to conversion. UserReplay enables site managers to do that by recording customer journeys. By playing back selected journeys click-by-click, you can see exactly where frustrations arise and take action.
Photo: Highways Agency/flickr cc