M-Commerce: Why going mobile is important for businesses

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In the conversation of eCommerce vs. mCommerce, we encounter two substantial though separate means of expanding one's business operations. But, while eCommerce has served businesses very well for decades now, it is no longer sufficient for entirely representing the needs of a thriving retail business.

Rather, a combination of eCommerce and mCommerce efforts may be required to ensure that businesses get the most mileage out of their digital presence. And while the broader eCommerce realm of this process may, at this point, be well understood, the somewhat newer mCommerce strategy remains mysterious to many. In this article, we explain why adapting a mCommerce approach may be very good for business.

What is mCommerce?

Let's start by defining our terms. mCommerce is any transaction that is performed on a mobile application. Technically, this is a form of eCommerce (in that it takes place on the world wide web) but differs by its specificity.

When your business develops an application with retail functions, it has officially entered the world of mCommerce.

Why is m-commerce important

Now that you know what mCommerce is, it's time to look at why it is so important!

Easy store Access

The primary benefit of a mCommerce platform is its user-friendly nature. While firing up a traditional eCommerce transaction can take a significant amount of time, mCommerce transactions can occur in seconds.

By using phone applications, customers can ostensibly browse your entire catalog from their pocket, find items they want, and purchase them with the push of a button.

New Marketing Channel

Once a customer downloads your application, you will reach them in ways never before possible through other channels of communication. Perhaps the most effective of these new methods come in the form of the "push notification."

Push notifications are messages sent directly to the mobile device's home screen—similar to how text messages are received. As a marketing channel, they boast an exceptionally high engagement rate of around 88%.

mCommerce applications have the additional benefit of integrating naturally with certain social media functions, allowing your customers to spread the word about your business.

Also bear in mind that more than half of all web traffic is mobile. By cultivating a mobile application presence, you are much better positioned to capitalize on the enormous portion of people that rely primarily on their cell phones for web searches. 

Geolocation

mCommerce apps also uniquely benefit stores that have physical locations, as well. Using geotracking technology, mCommerce apps can point customers in the direction of brick and mortar locations. In doing so, customers may be empowered to find and purchase items that they like online, and then pick them up for free at their convenience at one of your physical locations.

Sales Benefit

In keeping with our last point, mobile applications may create the benefit of a direct sale to your physical locations as well. While phone apps naturally allow customers to peruse your inventory from the comfort of their own home, they may ultimately prefer to pick up their purchases at the store.

While there, customers may wind up, leaving with additional items that they hadn't originally planned on buying. When your online and physical locations can feed one another, revenue is sure to increase.

 Cost Reduction

Though there is a front-end cost of developing an application, conventional wisdom indicates that adapting a mCommerce platform ultimately saves businesses a significant amount of money. The cost-saving benefit is mostly seen in the marketing budget.

As mentioned above, there is a wide range of ways to communicate with customers via phone applications; other marketing efforts require significantly less money and attention. It's pretty simple: when you can organically reach customers through push notifications and social media, other outreach forms slowly become superfluous.

Closing Remarks

A mCommerce presence is ultimately necessary for businesses that want to stay competitive. With major chains like Walmart investing heavily in mCommerce exclusively in the hopes of mitigating the amount of business that they lose to Amazon, it becomes clear what direction the global market is taking.

Mobile use has only increased in the last several years, which is sure to continue as time progresses. Even today, though, the mobile market is more than deserving of your attention. Presently, the average American spends an average of almost three hours on their phone. By positioning yourself where the average person is spending their time, you do well to capitalize on contemporary trends.