Recent research from application intelligence company AppDynamics show that for today’s always-on consumers, the performance of retail websites and mobile applications is strongly linked to customer satisfaction, loyalty and spend.
The findings, titled ‘An App Is Not Enough’, explore how technology is changing shopper behaviour and what the implications are for retailers.
Mobile apps play an increasingly important role in consumers’ lives with 70% of those surveyed making more than a quarter of purchases online. In fact, 20% admitted to making purchases on their phone whilst at work in front of their computer.
- Almost a third of Brits use mobile shopping apps to compare prices to ensure they get the best deals
- A fifth of Brits use mobile shopping apps to pass the time when they are bored or for retail therapy to cheer them up
- Over a quarter of UK respondents use shopping apps when they cannot find what they are looking for in store
The report indicates that expectations of retail apps are evolving “fast as demanding, digitally native customers dictate how, when and where they purchase from their chosen brands.”
It also found that 67% of consumers would be put off shopping with a retailer if they had a negative experience with its app, and over two thirds of consumers stated that the performance of a mobile app impacts their perception of a retailer. This therefore puts the onus on brands to deliver flawless application performance if they want to protect mobile revenue streams.
Jyoti Bansal, Founder and CEO of AppDynamics said: “As the lines between work and personal, digital and physical, continue to blur, retailers must ensure their apps function at all times across multiple platforms in order to retain and nurture always-on consumers.
Technology has transformed the retail landscape significantly over the past decade, and now more than ever, software plays a key role in defining business success – with revenue and reputation often hinging upon customer interactions with apps,”
Apps revolutionising brick-and-mortar stores
While digital technologies have provided people with an increasing amount of choice in how and where they shop, consumers have never been so time-poor.
The study showed that over a third of consumers would trial a new retailer’s app if it promised to deliver a more “convenient shopping experience.”
Here’s how apps could help brick-and-mortar stores improve:
- Almost two thirds of consumers want mobile apps that allow them to purchase products in store rather than queuing for a sales assistant
- Almost half of British consumers would like retail apps to provide store assistants with details of past purchases for a tailored omni-channel experience
- Over half would be encouraged to visit bricks and mortar stores if apps provided them with personalised offers when they were close by
- If unable to complete a purchase, 70% of consumers claimed that a prompt, personal apology or discount code would persuade them to revisit the retailer
Sam Barton, Head of User Experience at Shop Direct said: “Today’s consumers expect a seamless shopping experience with minimal friction. This puts increased pressure on retailers to innovate and use the latest technologies to improve and augment the online journey so it delivers the thrill of visiting the high street in a more convenient way.
As an example, Very.co.uk has recently introduced image recognition technology that allows shoppers to take photos of the clothes they like and search for similar styles across our product range. At the same time, mobile continues to play an integral role in increasing online sales, allowing consumers to shop when they want, how they want and on any device. With retailers using a combination of technologies to deliver a competitive and flawless experience to shoppers, ensuring the performance of these applications is mission critical.”