Is Your Retail Strategy Strong Enough to Survive the Digital Transformation?
By Aaron Rudger | January 13, 2015
Today, it is necessary to create a solid mobile strategy to drive e-commerce success. Many retailers are already embarking on strategies to continuously keep customers engaged as they journey across Main Street brick-and-mortar stores to the web and mobile. With this shift, retailers must decide how to best balance the rise of consumer expectations against the risk of exposure to IT failures. As more business processes are interconnected and automated across the digital experience—brick and mortar stores, the web and mobile—the potential points of failure have vastly increased.
Retailers are gathering in force this week at the annual National Retail Federation conference in New York to talk about trends impacting revenue in the retail business and how to approach it. Mobile will be at the forefront of many discussions because it’s creating incredible new ways to integrate in-store, online, consumer, and employee experiences.
To understand the impact mobile has on e-commerce, let’s first look back at this past holiday season where Amazon reported that they received about 426 orders per second. According to Internet Retailer, Amazon’s average order value is about $82, which suggests that each second could be worth at least $34,932 to the company. Knowing this, retailers are implementing projects to evolve with the transformation of the digital experience to ensure they take advantage of each mobile moment.
Beyond direct commerce, two popular programs being implemented across many retailers today include, (1) Curb Side Pick Up, which is a same-day delivery service which allows shoppers who are on-the-go to browse a participating store on their mobile app, make a purchase, and have the option of picking up items within a fairly short amount of time at curbside; and (2) In-Store Experience, which enables users to use geolocation for store specific deals and maps, with an easy-to-use list-building interface and ready to access inventory.
Mobile-First Philosophy Involves Mobile Testing and Monitoring—Before, During and After LaunchIn both cases, the performance and quality of mobile app and web are at the heart of successful digital transformation. To mobilize opportune touch points of the customer journey such as checkout, pick-up, and geolocation deals, retailers must design an interactive experience to keep customers engaged. This can only happen with an app that performs and is reliable every moment customers are engaged. By using real time monitoring, businesses can track and analyze the experience of consumers across their web and mobile digital journey. They can identify improvement opportunities by the location of their consumers and what devices they are using. To ensure their mobile app is functioning and high quality, it’s important for businesses to launch mobile app testing before, during, and after launch. This kind of proactive quality testing often makes the difference in an app's success or failure with customers.
Consumers are living a digital lifestyle and their expectations are at an all-time high. This new reality requires retailers to continually evolve their mobile philosophy so that it delivers engaging customer experiences before competitors do so. But in this transformation, it’s paramount to not fall short of meeting customers’ expectations. Make sure your apps perform and function optimally through mobile testing and performance monitoring.