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Retailers still need to strengthen their mobile offering

Retailers still need to strengthen their mobile offering
Monday February 20 2012

Pure play retailers Amazon and ASOS have topped the very first eChannel Retail Benchmark from eDigitalResearch after offering customers a clear and consistent experience across all of their online and mobile customer touchpoints.

Online and mobile eChannel’s are now playing a vital role in multichannel strategies. The latest eCustomerServiceIndex results shows that 51% of all UK consumers now own a smartphone and in a five month period last year, Marks and Spencer reported seeing 1.2 million visitors to their mobile site alone, leading to 13,000 orders.

Comparing top retailer’s performance across their website, mobile site and transactional mobile app, eDigitalResearch found that top performing pure play retailers are tailoring each of their eChannel’s accordingly but still applying the same recognisable and familiar branding and design.

Online favourite Amazon topped the overall league table with a customer satisfaction score of 86%. Results show that users liked the clear branding, similar format and consistency across all of Amazon’s eChannel’s, helping it to score top marks for both their online and mobile site offerings. Pure play fashion giant ASOS came second with an overall  score of 84% after providing the highest rated transactional mobile app. Next, Tesco and Asda make up the rest of the top five.

The results also found that eRetail websites continue to outperform their mobile counterparts. Users often became frustrated with keyword searches and product pages when using a mobile site or app due to the fiddly nature of a smaller screen and a lack of features, such as customer reviews and multiple images. To overcome these issues, retailers need to be implementing the latest features and technologies, such as predictive text in search bars, to make the entire customer journey as simple and easy as possible.

Derek Eccleston, Head of Research at eDigitalResearch, explained, “This is an important and exciting time for the retail industry. The dramatic rise of mobile has been customer led, with more and more people wanting to use their smartphones to shop and browse. It is important, therefore, for retailers to fully understand how their customers are shopping and what they expect from online, mobile sites and transactional apps.

By evaluating the customer experience both within and across each channel, our eChannel Retail Benchmark shows that retailers still need to strengthen their mobile offering in line with what consumers are telling us what they want. Our previous research suggests that customers gravitate towards a mobile site first, whereas a mobile app is used by more loyal and engaged customers and retailers need to bare this in mind when developing their multichannel strategies”.