What Mobile Commerce is Missing

Mobile commerce is a booming industry. In fact a recent article by Forbes predicts that mobile commerce will account for 50% of all digital commerce in the United States by the end of 2017. In our previous post, we mentioned the top five mobile commerce apps, and while they’re doing a lot right, there are still a few things missing from mobile commerce.

Take a look:

A Connection Between Mobile and Desktop


Information courtesy of Business Insider
Information courtesy of Business Insider


According to a recent Business Insider article, companies should be urged to provide both desktop and mobile options seeing as adults spend only 15% of their money on mobile, and a whopping 85% on desktop.

There are a few reasons why mobile commerce remains at such a low adoption rate. One is ease of payment. Consumers are still hesitant to pay with mobile due to security concerns, and setting up mobile payment will remain moderately difficult until Android and Apple Pay reach more critical iterations. But once consumers get over that hurdle, mobile commerce is a reliable, and efficient service–think Starbucks or Panera.

Second, most mobile commerce deployment is focused on mobile native apps, and is entirely separate to their desktop experience. That means for the same brand, a user could have a different login, and a different order history on mobile versus desktop. Acquiring users to download a native app is costly, it would be best to provide a more seamless mobile experience that allows users to make their first purchase without downloading the app.

For example, you can have a mobile web experience that allows users to make their first purchase without logging in, and leverage new web payment options, which are already deeply imbedded online. As the users try new mobile commerce platforms, they’re more likely to download the app, and the app is likely to stay longer on the user’s home screen. This is currently a missing piece in the mobile commerce puzzle. One possible solution is the latest web technology, Progressive Web Apps, which offer a more immersive mobile web experience with the ability to add to the home screen later.

Future-proof features

Mobile commerce is a burgeoning trend, which means to do it well, you have to anticipate what features will best accommodate the needs of users. Apps like Domino’s, which offer voice ordering, or Chop, which is integrated with Facebook Messenger, give consumers additional options that can fit easily into their day-to-day.

The key to future-proof features is being thoughtful about each page and process of the application. With Chop, during the initial launch in San Francisco, we found that the high rises in the city provided sporadic connectivity—meaning a customer could be mid-way through an order, pop onto Bart and lose their order. To solve this issue, we redesigned how far a user could get while offline—all the way to the payment page—and offered more informative error messages to better direct the users. Visit our previous post here, to learn more about how we redesigned for accidental disconnects.  

Seamless Integration With Brick and Mortar Stores

All m-commerce requires backend diligence, whether that’s in site and app maintenance, or more importantly in the employees who fill, ship, and correct all submitted orders. The most prevalent customer complaint we found when it comes to m-commerce, is a disconnect between the physical store and the mobile platform. Customers can place special instructions, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they will be followed.

Companies are scurrying to deploy mobile commerce options, but are failing to align their new technology with their existing stores. To counteract this, it’s important to teach all employees how to use and interact with any mobile commerce platforms. This can be tricky as retail has such a high turnover rate, but mobile commerce training can be implemented in a similar way as customer service, POS, or security training.. The key is to build a workable guide for mastery over mobile commerce. Improvement should be measurable, just as it would be for any other training involved with retail.

What do you think mobile commerce is missing? Let us know by commenting below or commenting on our Facebook or Twitter. As always, stay up to date with all Chop news by following us here or on any of the social media outlets.

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