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Opinion: Is your business mobile-optimised?

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online marketing
Graham van der Merwe, digital sales specialist at Outdoorphoto.

When was the last time you woke up without checking your phone first? Can’t remember? Exactly. Smartphones are our digital companions and like you, your customers are mobile which is why businesses must adapt the mobile-optimised approach to staying competitive.

As per the 2017 South Africa Mobile Report, nearly half of the respondents use their cellphones for 30 minutes to two hours per day, on average, of which 59% use it to make and receive phone calls and 40% for accessing the Internet. Even though 48% still don’t use their cellphones to purchase things, the most common transactions include common mobile transactions and paying bills, which mean that consumers are increasingly using their mobile devices to engage with products and services. Is your business ready?

PricewaterhouseCooper’s (PwC) Entertainment and media outlook: 2015-2019 report confirms that businesses are increasingly investing in mobile rather than desktop advertising and unsurprisingly mobile ad spend is on the increase. Mobile continues to change the business-to-consumer relationship. And with mobile, new opportunities arise to communicate with your customers – now is not the time for outdated marketing gimmicks, but for personalised information, products and services that add value to your customers’ lives. Captivate your audience by using mobile technology like location-tracking, live video, camera and touchscreen to your advantage.

1. It’s instant and constant
Thanks to mobile phones, online shops have direct access to their consumers 24/7. At any time anyone can access your online shop and it must be ready to engage them from the get-go. Nothing about the online shopping experience should leave a customer wondering how something really looks, works or fits into their lives – it must be a near-tangible experience.

With mobile, customers can also pick up where they left off a few hours ago and if your presence is static they will lose interest. Consumers place a high value on the information received from blogs and social media networks, whether they read every word or not. Give them that instant satisfaction with exciting, truthful content. Also, use this as an opportunity to keep customers updated on sales and promotions. Mobile marketing done right should constantly remind your customers of your brand as if a real presence in their lives.

2. It’s personalised
Technology has made customer personalisation the standard and with mobile so can you. Brands with content that enriches your life show that they understand you and often results in brand loyalty. The 2017 South Africa Mobile Report confirms this as 45% of mobile users will click on an advert if it was something that the needed or wanted.

3. It’s disruptive
With mobile, customers can make informed purchasing decisions through review and price checks. They can do this online too, but with mobile, they can do it whilst in your store. So while you’re consulting them on the product, they’re comparing your offering with others, possibly even making the purchase from another company. Mobile advertising and social media can be used to influence this decision-making process, so make sure you’re part of the online decision process by being mobile-friendly. It is a powerful tool for recommending products, a modern form of WOM and enjoys immense value when it comes to finalising a sale.

Mobile marketing is really about revamping the shopping experience across a multi-platform audience to enhance your brand’s position and presence. To compete in today’s world, you cannot only be online; you must be mobile too as consumers shop across devices, whether on their smartphones or tablets. All these channels influence consumer purchasing behaviour as is evident from online consumer behaviour data analytics which shows measurable ROI. In a nutshell, it allows for greater market penetration and attracts new potential customers to your brand.

By Graham van der Merwe, digital sales specialist at Outdoorphoto

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