Consumer expectations of mobile commerce are getting higher every year. We're looking at more reports from the 2011 Holiday season in our quest for the best website recommendations for this coming season.
Rarely do we find published studies specific to the jewelry industry, so we occasionally take a close look at what's available from other industries and try to relate them to ours.
We recently looked at the company Tealeaf.com which provides comprehensive customer behavior analysis to some very large companies. During the 2011 Holiday Season, Tealeaf commissioned an analysis of mobile commerce website from what they designated as the top 35 mobile retailers worldwide.
We've taken their findings and tried to relate them to the jewelry industry.
In 2011 mobile technology was easily available to holiday shoppers, and those shoppers assumed every retailer was prepared and ready with mobile websites or a mobile app.
Both BlueNile and JamesAllen rose to the challenge with both mobile websites and iPhone apps. Those websites and apps are easy to use and visually pleasing. We assume a lot of money was spent on development so the customers would have a good mobile shopping experience. We also assume a lot of money continues to be spent since applications always need to be tweaked for the platforms they use as those technologies change frequently.
Well designed mobile commerce websites would allow users to secretly shop for the person they are sitting or standing next to. The husband who is never without his cell phone in his hand could actually be browsing the local jeweler's website while his wife is naming the type of jewelry or gemstones she likes. Perhaps she's used to him texting or Facebooking all the time and would never suspect that he's actually shopping.
Another mobile finding from Tealeaf indicates that users are looking for shopping sales or updates. This matches our own data which says that more than 16% of mobile users are looking at your current events or sales announcements pages.
On the other hand, many jewelry retailers haven't yet invested mobile websites, which leads to frustrating user experiences. Tealeaf found similar situations with unprepared retailers and customers who sounded off with comments like "Lord, shopping on their website is painful. And the app is even worse."
If you don't want to invest in your own mobile site then you need to at least design your PC website with navigation that's easy to use. Test the website yourself. If you find it frustrating to use on your smartphone don't just call yourself "a computer neophyte" and forget about it! If you get frustrated then your customers will too.
One of the key lessons learned from the Tealeaf study was that "85 percent of adults who have completed a transaction using a mobile device expect the experience to be better than when using a desktop computer."
That quote alone shows the importance of mobile for the upcoming 2012 holiday season. Get started now.
To find out more about Tealeaf, you can visit their website at www.tealeaf.com. We are not related to them, nor do we receive any commission or recognition for mentioning them in this Daily Golden Nugget.