This month our focus is on customer experience and we’ve looked at the latest industry research. In particular, our focus has been on app best practice retailers should follow to resolve issues created in the traditional shopping journey, in order to create a successful retail app in time for peak trading.
The growth of app commerce is often attributed to millennials, however, Gen Z, 23% of whom spend a staggering 7 hours a day on their phones, look to have an even bigger impact on this growth. Unsurprisingly, Gen Z have the shortest attention span and tend to juggle as many as 5 screens at once when browsing online. The way we shop, and the way retail are apps are used is continuously changing and retailers need to keep up with these changing customer expectations and behaviours. With children more engrossed in the internet than ever before and nearly half of 10-12 year olds having smartphones, it’s not surprising that 95% of teens in the US have access to a smartphone and app shopping is becoming an expectation for Gen Z.
Now we’ve established that significance of how quickly app commerce is growing, what can retailers do to ensure they remain relevant to their changing buyer?
As Ben Perkins, Clients & Markets Director, Consumer & Industrial Products at Deloitte explained at our App Commerce event this June in order to gain and retain users, retailers apps need to prioritise solving the problems their customers have in their shopping journeys.
Stock availability is a must-have feature of retail apps, so much so that 75% of consumers feel frustrated by the lack of real-time stock visibility and 42% of shoppers saying they would like to be notified when a selected item becomes available. Imagine finding a product you love for it to be out of stock when you checkout. In order to reduce this frustration and manage customer expectations, we’ve introduced a low stock indicator on our platform.
The impact of recommended products on shopping experiences is often underestimated, so much so that poor product recommendations actually caused 65% of UK shoppers asked to feel stressed. Considering product recommendations can generate 33% higher average order values when done right, showing relevant suggestions has never been more important to the shopping experience.
Users have come to expect parity across all apps, if they can perform one task like using a screenshot of a dress they have seen on Instagram to search for similar items on Pinterest, they expect to be able to do the same on their favourite retailers’ app. Consumers now expect to use their mobile camera to snap pictures or upload saved images and immediately receive suggestions of similar shoppable products. We tend to consume visual content and making products discoverable using images has removed the frustration of not being able to find a product through traditional search. Retailers are quickly picking up on the demand and racing to embrace the technology, most recently by the likes of Forever 21 and H&M.
The checkout is arguably the most crucial part of any shopping journey, one study found that 87% of shoppers will abandon the checkout if it is too complicated or too long and 55% will go as far as to never return to that retailer’s site, although millennials are a little more forgiving than the over 55s when it comes to giving a retailer a second chance. Removing friction at this stage with the inclusion of payment options like PayPal, Apple Pay or Klarna can drive checkout conversion.
The summer is starting to come to a close, and shoppers are now looking towards the Christmas season. Retailers will need to make sure they remove the pains consumers are caused in the shopping journey in order to maximise conversion, provide an exceptional shopping experience and grow their relationships with their customers.
Reported by Samantha Rigg