Why retailers should integrate mobile device technology into their marketing strategy

Shoppers are using smartphones to access websites and apps more than ever before, according to a report by ForeSee. Of those surveyed, 33% have used their phone to access a retailer website, and an additional 26% plan to access retailer websites or mobile apps by phone in the future. Customers’ satisfaction with mobile websites and apps also impacts their future purchase intent, loyalty and recommendations across all channels. Kevin Ertell, vice president of retail strategy at ForeSee, said that “Any retailer not actively working to develop, measure and refine its mobile experience is leaving money on the table for competitors.”

One such retailer, Target, is taking the mobile experience very seriously and has implemented one of the best integrated marketing strategies that includes all social media channels as well as mobile device technology. Target is using every available communication channel to reach out to their customers and engage them in a meaningful and useful manner, and it all works very well together. Here’s a quick checklist of Target’s social media arsenal:

Light-hearted advice and calls to action on Facebook: Check

Clever voice, fun facts and customer interaction on Twitter: Check

Entertaining YouTube videos that promote their products and build a connection with their audience: Check

But what sets Target apart from its competition, and other companies in general, is its embrace and use of mobile device technology. According to Ertell, every customer touch point counts and retailers cannot afford to ignore the mobile experience. Good experiences with mobile sites and apps have critical cross-channel impact. Shoppers who are very satisfied with a mobile experience say they are 30% more likely to buy from that retailer online and 30% more likely to buy offline, as well as being far more likely to return to the main website, recommend it and be loyal to the brand.

It is all about creating a user-centric experience. Target makes it easier for their customers to buy from them by giving them every available resource and technology to improve their shopping experience. Since most shoppers use their smartphones to compare price information (56%), to compare different products (46%), to look up product specifications (35%) and to view product reviews (27%), Target addressed these customer needs with the following tools and apps:

1. Mobile Coupons
Customers get exclusive offers up to five times a month via text message and when they’re ready to redeem, they just show the coupon barcode on their smartphone for the cashier to scan.

2. Mobile Purchases
A mobile optimized checkout on the Target smartphone app allows customers to make purchases anywhere.

3. Barcode Scanner
If you’re at a Target store and want to learn more about a product or add it to a list, just scan the barcode with your built-in camera to view item details, read reviews, or reload your registry.

4. Shopping Lists
The Target app makes it easy to make a shopping list. Customers can drag products from the weekly ad or create their own custom items, then e-mail the list and shop from it on their smartphone.

5. Mobile GiftCards
Customers can save, gift or share their Target GiftCards, view card balances and use it to shop online or in stores.

Takeaway: Integrate mobile device technology into your marketing strategy and engage your audience across all social media channels in a meaningful and useful manner. Create a user-centric strategy to deliver an enriched communications experience to consumers and make it easier for them to purchase from you and be loyal to your brand.

This entry was posted in Integrated Marketing, Mobile Devices, Retail, Social Media and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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