TOP 2021 TRENDS IN MOBILE COMMERCE APPS TO WATCH OUT FOR
By JONATHAN FINLAY
It is already known that mobile devices account for the vast majority of internet traffic and online shoppers now. As per recent statistics, around 62% of smartphone users shop by using a mobile device. This clearly shows that the present and future of e-commerce are inseparable from smartphone apps.
Naturally, like every preceding year, in 2021 also we are going to see a massive increase in the influence of mobile apps in setting and shaping e-commerce trends, especially there is a significant demand in the European territory, and app development Ireland firms are leading the customized eCommerce mobile app development across the region.
Furthermore, E-commerce through mobile apps which is also called mobile commerce has already taken over all other e-commerce channels.
Let us have a closer look at the mobile commerce apps that are going to dominate 2021 and the years ahead.
Multi-channel retail which is basically about selling goods through different online channels such as the web store, social media or a standalone retail app is going to hold much more promise for the mobile commerce brands than ever before. Instead of focusing on segregated platforms individually, companies in the time to come will focus more on this consolidated approach.
A multi-channel approach will also ensure a better shopping experience as they can fluidly switch actions from one to the other with ease. One can just sign up on a web store and use the same login credentials while buying from the app. You can choose products and keep them saved in your cart and access them on another channel and make orders.
Progressive Web App (PWA)
Progressive Web App or PWA is basically a website that offers native app-like performance and features to ensure more ease of use, customer satisfaction and brand visibility. In the context of e-commerce stores, this can open up huge opportunities for delivering a sophisticated customer experience.
PWAs can be instantly saved on the Home Screen with the brand icon just like any native app and can be opened instantly with a single tap. They load instantly and can send push notifications. PWAs, being web apps do not consume device storage but thanks to powerful caching can be accessed offline as well. An e-commerce store by embracing PWA can turn their good old web interface into a powerful mobile app without making huge investments in native app projects.
Image search has already become popular as a key feature to transform the way customers in an e-commerce store search for products. Since people often look for products that they cannot properly name, a powerful Image Search function will help them tremendously by recognising objects in any captured picture and by generating related keywords for a more refined search.
This will definitely reduce the difficulties and time to search items and ensure greater customer satisfaction. This is going to be a game-changer for many e-commerce stores where designs, patterns, fabric and similar stuff often makes it difficult for customers to use the right keyword for search.
There is an overwhelming increase in the number of customers who prefer using their mobile devices to make purchases online. This has resulted in a sharp and steady decline in making payments for items with physical cards, net banking and other physical modes of payment. Almost all leading mobile platforms and leading brands have come with their mobile payment solutions or mobile wallets such as Amazon Pay, PayPal, Apple Pay, and Google Pay.
Even the e-commerce web stores that are now mostly opened through mobile browsers are increasingly relying on these mobile wallets for hassle-free, quick and smooth payment processing.
Earlier social media channels were mainly used by the e-commerce stores to get traffic to their e-commerce product pages. But things have changed with the emergence of social commerce. Now the mobile users can access the store and make orders directly from social media platforms.
Social commerce has fulfilled the gap between socialising and shopping experience. Customers now can make purchases, browse products, make inquiries, ask questions, post reviews, see the feedback of other customers and give suggestions through the social media platform itself. Both Instagram and Facebook are leading the pack in the social commerce space and any mobile commerce brand cannot undermine their influence and sales potential.
Voice commands for doing everything with the mobile device has already become a game-changer for many platforms. Voice search on Google, voice command to search and play video on YouTube, voice messaging through a chatbot and voice communication with the smart assistants like Apple Siri or Google Assistant to operate the device, all these have become part and parcel of regular mobile user activities.
By taking this trend further, voice shopping or voice interactions to make purchases through mobile commerce stores is also increasing. The ability to voice search products and make voice commands for purchases will enhance the shopping experience, make the process faster and reduce the friction for on-the-go shopping.
Rule-based chat-bots that can only allow you to choose between a few options while processing a request was just a kind of static tool for online customer support. Now chatbots are more dynamic and powerful thanks to the technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML). Intelligent chatbots empowered by these technologies can respond to queries more naturally based on data-driven inputs, make suggestions and recommendations based on customer preferences, and offer guidance to make customer journey smooth.
Mobile commerce stores with the huge promise unleashed by the intelligent chatbots in enhancing the shopping experience and business conversion have already incorporated these intelligent chatbots into their user experience and customer communication strategies. To ensure a streamlined customer journey, more business conversion through accurate intent-based recommendations and to ensure overall customer satisfaction through responsive support, intelligent chatbots will be very important tools for mobile commerce brands.
VR & AR
Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are two technologies that started their journey with amusing games and entertainment apps and further were embraced by businesses for serious use cases. Both now play crucial roles in delivering immersive shopping experiences for many e-commerce and mobile commerce stores.
The role of AR has been particularly impressive in extending the real-world shopping experience through digital means. Today a customer can digitally try a product on their body just by uploading their own images and seeing how the garments, eyewear and other items look on their body just by looking at their mobile screen. A virtual reality tour in a travel destination can help a customer decide about booking a vacation.
All these trends that we mentioned above are all game-changers for the mobile commerce stores in their own way. They can improve the shopping experience, push business conversion and ensure brand visibility and traction in never-before ways. As mobile commerce is continuing to push the limits for online retail, these tech-driven trends will be the competitive factors.