Mobile shopping may be key to reaching affluent individuals

Customer Management

When it comes to raising revenue, targeting the right consumers helps. For many retailers, affluent demographics are ideal – because they earn more annually, they also tend to have larger disposable incomes and can likely spend more at stores.

So, what is the most effective way for retailers to actively engage these high-value prospects? According to a recent mobile commerce report from BBC World News, which polled people from the United States, Sweden, Hong Kong, Germany and other regions, mobile shopping may play a pivotal role in engaging affluent individuals.

Well-off customers show a higher usage of smartphone devices for various tasks than less-affluent individuals. For example, 51 percent of high earners use their smartphones for business purposes, whereas only 40 percent of the general population do. This extends to Internet usage, which includes activities such as mobile commerce, with 39 percent of affluent respondents using their smartphones in this way compared to 18 percent of the general population.

Moreover, well-off customers are more likely to be influenced mobile devices. For example, 15 percent of affluent respondents said they agree that brands need to be available on mobile devices if they want to be “modern and dynamic.”

If retailers want to gain momentum with high-value customers, they need to make mobile shopping a pillar of their eCommerce operations.

Additionally, they are more likely to be affected by mobile advertising and branding efforts. For retailers, the takeaway should be clear: If they want to gain momentum with high-value customers, they need to make mobile shopping a pillar of their eCommerce operations.

Making mobile shopping a priority

Although retailers often like targeting affluent individuals, it’s also worth noting that mobile shopping isn’t something that only the well-to-do actively participate in. Although the general population may not be quite so quick on the uptake of relatively expensive smartphone and tablet devices, those who do have them are still likely to leverage them for shopping as well.

In fact, one report from comScore found that approximately half of all time spent with online retail by Americans in 2013 was done on mobile devices.

“Since U.S. consumers now spend more than half of their time on retailers’ web sites using their smartphones and tablets, mobile can’t be viewed simply as an ancillary device or action, it now epitomizes how consumers think and act when they interact with retailers,” says Shop.org executive director Vicki Cantrell.

“Retailers have to continue to invest to make sure they get their mobile offerings right, or will increasingly risk alienating customers and leaving significant money on the table,” Cantrell added.

Retailers that want to make mobile commerce a focus of their efforts need to ensure that everything ranging from front-end design to back-end eCommerce operations are accounted for.

If customers are shopping on mobile devices, merchants should be able to tell whether it’s the same person who looked at an item online or made a purchase at a brick-and-mortar store.

Having a well-designed website that makes the mobile shopping experience seamless and easy is one step in the right direction, but mobile commerce efforts shouldn’t stop there either.

For example, retailers need to be able to manage their customer information and inventory across channels as well. If customers are shopping on mobile devices, merchants should be able to tell whether it’s the same person who looked at an item online or made a purchase at a brick-and-mortar store. Their preferences and past behaviors should be accounted for to deliver the best mobile shopping experience possible.

The same goes for inventory management. If merchants want to maximize sales from their mobile commerce efforts, they should be able to quickly shift inventory channels to meet the demand of their customers.

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