In a slow retail economy, mobile applications are helping retailers to take customer shopping experience to the next level, with real-time, location-specific information and deeper brand engagement
Mobile applications are the new technology tools to help retailers foster deeper customer engagement and build greater brand loyalty, says Manthan Systems, the leading provider of Business Intelligence and Analytics solutions for retailers.
From finding retail outlets, searching for product information and comparing prices to availing the best deals, mobile apps are radically changing the dynamics of consumer shopping. "Equipped with cameras, location-awareness, and voice and data support, smartphone-enabled mobile apps are becoming one of the most critical point-of-sale promotional devices for retailers,” says Atul Jalan, CEO, Manthan Systems.
In fact, Nielsen’s latest report ‘The State of Mobile Apps’ states that one in four mobile phone users in the US have smartphones and 59% of them have downloaded a mobile application.
A recent Gartner study delves into reasons for growing customer preference for mobile applications. The study concludes that mobile apps offer short bursts of intense engagement, allowing customers to drill down to specific tasks without browsing through an entire website. Feature-rich and easy-to-access, mobile apps provide quick results for users on the move with many apps available as free downloads.
In recent times, department stores and large format traders are increasingly dependent on brand loyalty to draw in business. However, retailers have to keep in mind the dramatic shifts in customer demographics and shopper behaviour while carrying out any marketing and branding effort.
Today’s shoppers are comfortable with new technologies, are highly networked and well informed. They are on the move and are compulsively multi-tasking. Mobile apps, with their capability to connect with the right audience at the right time and place, are the perfect solution to help retailers address this market.
Emphasizes Jalan; “Apps are providing consumers with deeper levels of brand engagement which in turn can lead to higher customer loyalty. Retailers who have not yet taken advantage of this technology are at a distinct disadvantage and stand to lose out to competition."
With most retailers already having an existing online presence, developing a basic native or third party app would amount to simply repackaging existing information on their website for the iPhone or Android mobile device. Thus a basic app may not mean much time and cost investment, but the impact on the retailer’s brand, customer loyalty, footfalls and sales can be significant.
For additional information on how top retailers are using mobile applications to reach out to customers and redefine their business, read the full article at http://thoughts.manthansystems.com/.