Mobile shopping is changing the way businesses understand how people buy things. In the past, marketers thought customers followed a set path when deciding to make a purchase. They believed it started with noticing a product, then becoming interested in it, wanting it, and finally buying it. This helped them plan how to talk to customers and convince them to make a purchase.
Now, with mCommerce Life Cycle, this journey has evolved. Instead of a fixed path, it’s more like a series of steps customers take on their phones.
At first, they might see an ad or a product online. Then, they might check it out, compare it with other options, and eventually decide to buy it.
Marketers now need to consider these steps in the context of mobile devices, making sure the experience is smooth from discovery to making a purchase.
As customers get closer to buying on their phones, businesses need to put more effort into making the sale happen smoothly on mobile platforms.
mCommerce Life Cycle
During every step of the Mobile Shopping Life Cycle, marketers can guide mobile shoppers toward their products and influence how they shop.
Getting Ready: Finding Info Before Buying
Before people head to a store or consider making a purchase, they often research on their mobile devices. Marketers need to ensure that information about their products or services is easily accessible and visible on mobile platforms.
This includes details like product descriptions, prices, reviews, and availability, making it convenient for potential buyers to find what they need when they’re looking to make a purchase decision.
On the Go: Traveling Around
As consumers move from one place to another, their mobile devices can provide valuable information based on their location. Marketers can use location-based technology to send targeted messages, offers, or discounts to individuals who have opted in to receive such notifications.
These messages can be tailored based on the person’s location, making the offers more relevant and appealing. For instance, someone passing by a store might receive a notification about a special offer available in that specific store.
In-Store: Shopping at a Physical Store
Traditionally, physical stores were seen as a disadvantage compared to online-only retailers. However, with mobile technology, physical stores can leverage this platform to engage with shoppers.
Marketers can use mobile apps or technologies to interact with customers while they are inside the store. This interaction could involve providing additional product information, exclusive in-store discounts, or guiding customers to relevant sections within the store using their mobile devices.
Picking Products: Deciding What to Buy
This stage involves consumers being near or considering specific products. Marketers can utilize proximity-based marketing, which involves using technologies that interact with consumers in real-time.
For example, as customers approach a particular product, they might receive instant offers or discounts on their mobile devices.
These offers can be adjusted based on factors like available inventory management or the number of customers interested, making the offers more dynamic and relevant.
Checkout Time: Making the Purchase
As mobile technology becomes more integrated into the checkout process, marketers have an additional opportunity to engage with customers. This could involve providing last-minute deals or suggestions during the checkout process.
With the rise of mobile payment options and self-checkout systems, marketers can offer incentives or recommendations at the point of purchase, enhancing the overall shopping experience.
At each of these stages, mobile technology provides unique opportunities for marketers to engage with consumers, making the shopping experience more convenient, personalized, and engaging.
Final Stage After Buying
Once a purchase is made, customers often share their experience using photos, videos, and details about their new purchase through their mobile devices, seeking opinions and comments from friends and acquaintances. For marketers, the challenge lies in being actively involved in these discussions.
Mobile involvement in each of these six stages will keep growing as more people use smartphones and tablets for shopping. As the mobile shopping process takes shape, brands and marketers who understand and adapt to these changes will be better equipped to harness the power of mobile influence and evolve alongside these shifts.