Although there are a variety of ways for shoppers to experience poor customer service (see our recent blog “The Worst Shopping Experience Ever”), it’s costing companies more than just lost revenues when it happens within their apps.
In order to make mobile shopping apps as successful as possible there are some simple facts to consider. Online shopping is widespread – 75 percent of shoppers shop online and one out of 10 shoppers already prefer mobile apps exclusively for their online shopping. Yet more than half (55 percent) of consumers say they struggle at least once every five visits.
Mobile-First Customer Care
The most successful apps are easy to navigate, and have a clear, concise user interface. These apps are designed for the mobile experience and the mobile lifestyle, which is different from shopping on the web. Today most apps are missing the opportunity to create a mobile-first customer care experience, instead trying to make mobile shopping like online shopping. Shoppers are disappointed by this.
It’s tough enough to get a shopper’s attention, and it’s even tougher to get a mobile shopper’s attention because they’re already on the go. So it’s critical that when you have a shopper’s attention and they have a question, you don’t fracture the moment and send them down a different path to get assistance like having them call an 800 number or send an email. You would never do that in a store, so why would you think of doing that in a mobile app and expect it to be fine with consumers?
The biggest misstep in creating mobile retail apps is overlooking the right way to offer customer care. Whenever a shopper is confused or needs help, they often have to close the app and open up their email or make a phone call. That leads to a fractured brand experience and suddenly, the app is abandoned altogether. More than a third of shoppers say they are disappointed with the inability to get help within a mobile app, and 51 percent of shoppers will abandon the cart and close the app (causing lost purchases) when they struggle in a retail app. 20 percent of shoppers will stop using the app entirely.
Seamless Transition to Live Assistance
Abandoned shopping carts are one thing, but if a consumer deletes your app... you’ve lost them forever. One of the most important things you can do to keep your customers happy is to provide a seamless transition to live assistance within your app. Once you make a commitment to be at least as helpful to customers in your mobile app as you would be in a store, the pieces all fall into place.
Research by Forrester (Mulpuru, Sucharita “The New Paradigm of Retail” Forrester – July 24, 2014) suggests that U.S. online sales will top $400 billion in 2018, and nearly $1 trillion worldwide. With online sales expected to grow and the already growing proliferation of mobile shopping adoption, those retailers who can provide the best mobile customer care for their customers will likely benefit most in terms of expanding bottom lines and brand loyalty among shoppers. Do your company a favor – unchain it from archaic customer service offerings in order to capitalize on these new opportunities.
Download our full white paper report on mobile consumer shopping trends to learn more about why mobile shoppers need to have access to better mobile customer care.