In light of the release of the Apple Watch, it is imperative to recognize the momentum and merit of digital technology. Whether it be wearable tech or the GPS programmed into your
Recently, Google worked with Ipsos and Sterling Brands to measure the influence of mobile technology on consumer shopping behavior and expectations. This research revealed that 71% of consumers cited the increasing importance of their smartphones to their in-store experience.
Perhaps one of the more prominent pieces of information drawn from this study (and one that we as marketers should draw from) is that the consumer experience begins well before the act of in-store shopping. In fact, 87% of shoppers look for information before going into any store. Whether to compare prices, diversity of goods, or user ratings of product value, consumers increasingly look toward their mobile devices to sway their decision of where, when, and how to shop.
The value in this information lies in the knowledge that consumers will avoid stores that lack searchable information on location and stock availability. Indeed, data shows that 3 in 4 shoppers who find local information via search results are more likely to visit stores.
But the necessity of mobile-compatible search and utility isn’t exclusive to the pre-shopping process. Consumption of online information also occurs during a shopper’s in-store visit, as well as afterwards. Whether for retail, technology, food or healthcare shoppers, the availability and accessibility of shopping information is evermore essential to the shopping—and marketing—landscape.
At the end of the day, mobile more than matters: it has become a lifeline between the consumer and the brand. As eMarketer predicted, smartphone usage worldwide would have grown 25% in 2014, with the number of smartphone owners totaling more than 1.76 billion by the end of last year. The merit of this is immense; shoppers today carry a communication channel in their pocket and are equipped with amounts of information unlike ever before. If we, as marketers, want to continue to enliven our brands in this digital age, we must embrace and optimize mobile utility for brands and respective consumers.