At the start of September, IMRG reported that 23.2% of online sales in Q2 of 2013 were completed through a mobile or tablet device, double the figure in 2012. As the fastest-growing web design agency in Surrey, we recommend businesses on mobile optimisation and app development. Here are our top five tips for planning a revenue-making strategy for mobile:
1. Work out how you want to engage your customers
Think carefully about how your customers will use your business on their mobiles. This is the best way to see quick returns on minimal investment and effort. How will your customers consume your business on the move? It could be through location-based deals, such as special offers on Foursquare, making reservations and orders on their phone, or simply reading product information and reviews. Will you need a payment platform? Once you have the answers to these questions, you can take the next step towards development.
2. Understand the best payment option for you and your customers
The next step is to decide the correct mobile payment option for your business. There are four main approaches to this:
- Direct Operator payments: This is where the consumer pays for your product directly from their mobile bill, normally using their mobile operator PIN number. Whilst requiring a commission payment on transactions to the operator (Apple for iPhone apps for instance), this does create a seamless payment process. After Google Play implemented ‘Direct Operator ‘ transactions, their payments trebled between 2011 and 2013.
- Premium SMS Billing: Paying via a premium charge through SMS is still useful in the correct context. It could be useful for events or location-based deals or perhaps where customers are requesting a voucher code which can be texted back to them.
- Straight credit card payments: The advantage is your business doesn’t have to pay commission to a mobile operator but conversion can be affected by people having to enter their card details. If your process is compliant, you can create one-click payments after their initial payment.
- You can use an ‘Online Wallet’: Use an ‘Online Wallet’ such as PayPal. This is very simple in terms of integration but again, conversion might be affected amongst users who do not have a PayPal account.
3. Get HTML5 savvy
Building mobile-hosted web pages in the language HTML5 will allow you build a web platform that can take payments and will also make it easy to optimise for different sizes of device. You can also use HTML5 to create rich-media adverts for mobile advertising channels and create simple but effective landing pages which take people directly into the payment process. These pages can then be embedded as links into SMS for instance.
4. Create push notifications for apps
Once your mobile web platform has been developed, it’s time to think about how to push people to use it. If you have an app and the correct permission opt-ins for your subscriber base, you can use timely push notifications straight to people’s smart phones to drive them into your app. This could be useful for contacting customers when they’ve abandoned your shopping basket for instance.
5. Understand your mobile marketing mix
You can use a variety of channels to drive purchases and engagement on mobile. Social channels, email and SMS can all be combined to great effect. With 71% of people using their mobiles to access social networks, consider time-sensitive Facebook and Twitter offers, particularly after 5pm when people are on the move. Current sharing research shows that these deals can be quickly spread across social networks on mobile devices. And don’t forget that email marketing can still be a fantastic channel for pushing direct response and more people than ever read emails on their mobile. For shops, restaurants and bars, SMS can be useful in promoting special deals, particularly if you have data on when consumers shop most regularly.
For more advice on social marketing on mobile, read our blog post on five ways that consumers are sharing content.
For help with your content marketing, social media strategy and Search Engine Optimisation, give us a call on 01252 413757. We are a full-service digital agency based in Surrey, specialising in web design and online marketing. We love to help local businesses thrive so get in touch!