Mobile content covers the gamut, from the implementation of mobile apps and mobile web sites to in-store mobile technology. A fast-changing industry segment, mobile presents unique challenges to today's retail organizations. This section will help retail executives stay on top of the latest news, insights and information to help solidify cross-channel strategies and draw traffic into stores.

Apple Looks To India As Next Frontier For Retail Stores

  • Published in News Briefs
When Amazon decided to invest in additional $3 billion in India in June, they sent a clear message to every other retailer that the country was a high-priority destination going forward. Apple appears to have caught onto this trend as well, with CEO Tim Cook announcing that the tech giant will open retail stores in India. The announcement comes after Apple’s quarterly earnings report revealed that the retailer’s profit dipped 27% to $7.80 billion, largely due to a saturated market for iPhones.

PayPal-Visa Deal Signals Some Agreement Within Fragmented Mobile Payments Industry

The longstanding rivalry between PayPal and Visa appears to have been quelled, with the companies striking a deal designed to make it easier for Visa cardholders to use the online payments system. With mobile payment transactions expected to reach $27 billion in 2016, many companies are seeking a place at the table. As mobile payments overall continue to grow, PayPal and Visa are essentially bending to consumers’ will, with an understanding that a more open, inclusive payments platform will reel in more transactions for everyone. But more importantly, they’re showing that two major payments businesses can play nice in an environment that often has been characterized more by exclusion than cooperation.

Mastercard Masterpass Will Serve 5M Stores In 77 Countries

Mastercard has introduced the global digital Masterpass solution, which allows consumers to pay online, through mobile apps or in brick-and-mortar stores. Currently available at hundreds of thousands of merchants online or in-app, Masterpass contactless payments will soon expand to more than five million physical locations in 77 countries, with 1.8 million merchant locations in the U.S. alone. "Easy and intuitive payment methods have become table stakes," said Craig Vosburg, President of North America Mastercard at an event introducing the new service on July 14. "We've evolved our network to enable connections, security, ubiquity and interoperability. We want to enable our customers to pay anywhere, anytime, any way they want."

New Ways Tech Can Reinvent The Shopping Experience

To some degree, there’s no need to visit a brick-and-mortar store in 2016. In sections of New York City, for instance, you can get everything you need from Amazon, from trampolines to  a T-bone steak for dinner. And yet, late last year the online retailing giant began expanding into brick-and-mortar with a bookstore in Seattle’s University Village. With headlines proclaiming brick-and-mortar stores heading rapidly towards obsolescence, Amazon’s move may seem puzzling.

Only 17% Of Mobile Apps Display Local In-Store Inventory Levels Featured

  • Published in Mobile
While buy online/pick up in-store is becoming a more common strategy among retailers seeking to up their omnichannel fulfillment game, many still have a ways to go before they can say they’re doing it right.   Despite consumer demand for inventory visibility prior to walking in a store, only 17% of retailer mobile apps display in-store inventory quantities for local stores, according to data from Kibo.

American Express Named Top Finance Brand For Mobile Experiences

  • Published in News Briefs
American Express was voted the best financial services brand for mobile experiences, according to Future of Finance, a report from digital experience consultancy Episerver. The report analyzed the mobile sites, Android, iPhone and tablet apps of 40 top UK and U.S. financial service providers. American Express took the lead in both UK and U.S. benchmarks, scoring high marks for its seamless design and usability across all platforms, regions and mobile devices. Though available on all platforms, AMEX scored particularly high on both Android mobiles and tablets for its use of location services and the latest "Touch ID" security features. Here are the UK’s top five financial mobile experiences: American Express The AA Hargreaves Lansdown PayPal Barclaycard Overall, the mobile experience scores were lower for the financial sector than they were in Episerver’s cross-market retail benchmark, which launched in November 2015. “For traditional brick-and-mortar retailers, a mobile-first approach has generally been…

Pokémon Go Showcases Potential Of Augmented Reality In Retail Featured

The Pokémon Go smartphone app has created plenty of buzz since its release in the U.S. and Australia on July 6, with more than 15 million people having downloaded the app from the Apple Store. From a retailer’s perspective, that’s 15 million case studies for how potential shoppers are getting used to and using augmented reality-based apps within their daily life. This could be great news for brick-and-mortar stores and malls, which have been seeking out ways to increase store traffic. Niantic, the developer behind Pokémon Go, revealed that the app would include “sponsored locations” which would enable businesses to sponsor stops within the game, including “Pokéstops” and “Pokégyms” designed to help users collect items and stage battles with other opponents.

UK Startup Bridges Store And Mobile With Real-Time Inventory Data

  • Published in News Briefs
Although all Brexit-related news continues to stay top-of-mind for UK retailers and consumers, one startup is going full speed ahead to ensure that local stores throughout the nation can continue to connect with shoppers. Retail tech startup NearSt is aiming to bridge the in-store and mobile experiences with the launch of its NearLive platform, as well as its web site and mobile app. The platform, which has already partnered with local bookstores in London, is expanding its retail partnerships to more sellers including consumer electronics, DIY goods, health and beauty products, sportswear, stationery and gift shop services.

4 (Surprisingly Human) Mobile Advertising Tactics For Driving Foot Traffic To Your Retail Location

With retail browsing rapidly shifting to mobile, the choice facing retailers is simple and stark: adapt and reap the benefits, or don’t and suffer the consequences. People now spend more digital media time on their mobile phones than they do on desktop computers. For retailers, that could be a good thing. Mobile phones afford immediate and intimate communication that can help marketers achieve impressive, and specific, results. Marketers use mobile advertising to drive mobile purchases and other digital KPIs, but they can also use it to drive people to brick-and-mortar locations, and with growing effectiveness. Sophisticated technology facilitates mobile targeting based on location, time of day, behavioral profiles and even intent. But no matter how cutting-edge your approach, you’ll gain the best results if you bear in mind an important advertising best practice: Be human.

49% Of College Freshmen's Parents Already Spending Generously On Back-To-School Featured

While 34% of all parents have already begun their back-to-school shopping, one particular group of parents have been especially eager to splurge on their children before sending them away to school. Nearly half (49%) of parents of college-bound freshmen have started shopping, according to advertising platform Rubicon Project. This demographic certainly isn’t holding back when it comes to supplying their children’s needs; they spend $1,378 per person, almost double the $684 average that K-12 parents plan to spend.

MasterCard Woos Retailers With Technology Innovation

Samsung Fridge Demo - Photo by Bryan Bedder, Getty Images for MasterCard The last several years have seen lots of non-payment players invade the payments space. Companies ranging from retailers themselves to technology and hardware companies (Google, Apple, Samsung, etc.) all have staked a claim to their slice of the payments pie. So doesn't it make sense that an organization like MasterCard, which is already known for payments, offer other retailing and customer-facing functionalities?

34% Rise In Ad Blocking Forces Retailers To Seek Marketing Alternatives Featured

Retail brands need to step up their search for additional ways to reach consumers online, as there is strong evidence that more shoppers have grown tired of seeing advertisements. Ad blocking is becoming more commonplace among American web users, with almost 70 million people using ad blocking services in 2016, a 34.4% increase above last year’s totals. Various estimates show that these services can put a huge dent in potential revenue for businesses around the globe; companies publishing ads online stand to lose anywhere from $27 billion to $35 billion by 2020.

Fender Uses Visual Tools To Facilitate Custom-Designed Guitar Sales Featured

Unless you happen to be a guitar-smashing heavy metal rock star, it's unlikely you'll be buying multiple guitars from 70-year-old instrument maker Fender. So the company has a strong incentive to ensure that customers love the purchases they make, and also that they get exactly the guitar that they want — down to the tiniest detail. This is a particular challenge in serving the shoppers who choose to customize their Fender guitars. With options ranging from the materials used to make various parts of the instrument to color choices for the body, fingerboard and pickguard, the number of possible combinations quickly mushrooms. (For the iconic Fender Stratocaster alone there are more than 50,000.)

The Gift (Card) That Keeps On Giving

For a long time, pre-paid gift cards have presented retailers with a prime awareness-building opportunity for both existing and new customers. Gift cards encourage consumers to interact with a business and purchase its goods or services. Whether gifted as a birthday present, a thank you, or just for a friend to try a new experience, consumers’ demand for pre-paid gift cards offers retailers plenty of opportunities for business growth. Traditional gift cards, while helping facilitate an increase in both brick-and-mortar and online store traffic, have one major downfall — they only encourage a one-time use. Consumers will either spend it and forget it, or throw it away when their $20 purchase amounts to $18.95. Retailers that rely on pre-paid, one-time use cards miss out on an enormous opportunity to establish a more dynamic relationship with increasingly fickle consumers whose shopping experiences evolve with technology.

How 3 Retailers Are Breaking Through The Mobile And Online Satisfaction Barrier

Even though acronyms like IoT and AI may create excitement and draw crowds at trade show booths, the real thrill in retail is winning sales and delighting loyal customers by getting the basics right. Many of the conversations and demos at the recent IRCE event centered around those key business goals for retailers looking to improve the online and mobile experience. With technology upgrades and advancements, retailers can more effectively satisfy consumers who are demanding ultimate satisfaction at every step of the shopper journey.
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