In the wake of Covid-19 Pandemic, several shoppers are turning to online shopping not only because of the convenience it offers, but also to stay safe. Even the crowd that offline stores used to receive has receded, forcing businesses to establish bases online and start selling products.
Having a website for online retail is excellent, but it can never beat an application that users can use on the go. They are far better for engaging shoppers and a clear indication of a loyal customer base.
Moving a “brick and mortar” retail business online comes with hoards of benefits, and some of them are mentioned below.
1. Offering an experience to shoppers
Offering a mobile-compatible website is not the solution you are looking for in your business in the long run. If you want to provide an experience to the users with features they have never seen before, you should create a shopping app.
The interface’s functionalities allow you to use the full-screen of the cellphone to add value to an individual’s life. Your customers are likely to spend hours scrolling the app because it is just one click away; they wouldn’t have to visit a browser, especially for it. Now that you are getting extra hours for engaging a customer on the app, you should place your products in such a manner that your customers buy before they leave.
2. Enhanced Customer Base
When you invest in a shopping app, you display commitment towards the customer requirements, and customers will reward you with loyalty in return. The number of customers who are ready to commit to your brand is visible through the number of downloads and the hours they spend on scrolling through to place orders.
One unmatched strategy to retain customers through apps is to offer them exclusive content that is not made available on any website or store. This will strengthen the relationship between customers and your brand. If customers have been loyal to the offline store but cannot visit during the pandemic, you can get a chance to re-engage them through online shopping apps.
3. Better customer reach
Requesting customers to fill in their contact details in a register or the website so that they can receive newsletters is often s futile exercise. One, customers might just skip it, or they might never open the e-mails to see what you have in store for them. However, with a native app on their cellphones, they will have a chance to see the push notifications and might act upon them if they are attractive enough.
An added advantage of push notifications is that you can remind your customers about the products that are waiting for them in the shopping cart. In this way, they are likely to re-visit their decision to abandon the cart and might end up making a purchase.
If you have users who haven’t been active on the app for a while now, push notifications will help them know that you miss them. Such strategic notifications will entice them to see what’s new in the online store, and they are more likely to open the app again.
4. Offer Added Functionality
There is no service greater than customization for customers who are loyal to your brand, and apps allow you to offer that. You can send push-notifications and display products on the home-screen of customers according to their location. Also, you can encourage them to add their pictures in outfits from your store. The personalized experience will prompt customers to make more purchases than they were planning to.
Along with the mobile experience, the app promotes a better in-store experience too. For instance, push notifications can be used to prompt customers when they visit the store about the items in their wish list that are available. This allows customers to check stuff out for themselves and possibly make purchases that they could not do earlier.
5. Know the customers better
The usage habits of customers, their locations, the pattern of their movement on the app, etc. are detrimental sales data that might not be available elsewhere. This can be used to get valuable insights into customer behavior, essential for building a long-lasting relationship with them.
By allowing customers to create their profiles, you can customize notifications if they have been interested in a line of products for a long time. This will not only encourage conversions but also make customers feel wanted by the brand.
In the current market landscape, where customers’ mobility is limited due to the pandemic, more and more retailers are going online. While mobile websites work well, they cannot possibly beat the viability, customer engagement, and customized functionality offered by shopping apps. The more customers a brand retains and engages, the faster they are bound to grow.