Before online shopping was a thing, one had to do a number of tasks. One would need to dress-up, drive to the store, pass through a crowd, drag a cart around, stand the queue for billing, load items in the vehicle, and take them home. But now, all these tasks are replaced by a set of clicks—and the transaction is done. Well, that’s one way how mobile devices have affected the way people shop and the consumer behaviour.
Those who have lived that time will know I’m still being humble when describing offline shopping. Searching for the desired goods, comparing similar products, and keeping a track of your budget are some of the exhausting tasks customers have to take care of while shopping. But all this changed with the advent of online shopping. However, it was still limiting to an extent.
To further revolutionise it, the concept of shopping online through mobile devices came into existence. Since this trend developed, it only grew bigger.
Therefore, to strategize better for digital marketing, it becomes important to understand how mobile devices can affect consumer behaviour.
Ways that mobile devices affect consumer behaviour
# Customers have become researchers
In the current times, any and every information is just a few clicks away. What major winter sales are going on? Which are the best digital marketing agencies in Hyderabad? What is the best suited fabric for formal pants? You can find answers to all these questions easily and instantly though your mobile phone.
In fact there are many discussion forums online that are created by consumers for discussing various goods and services. It helps them better understand a product, its pros & cons, available alternatives, better options, opportunity costs, and so on. As a result, consumers are now more aware and educated.
# Shrinking window time for selling
A wide variety of alternatives for a single product are now easily available on mobile devices. Hence, customers don’t have too much time to spend on one business. In fact, digital marketing experts believe that when a visitor enters your website, he/she spends an average of just 8 seconds before deciding whether or not to engage with a business further.
As a result, the window time for selling is shrinking. Therefore, it is important to grab your visitor’s attention with these few seconds. Moreover, the buying process should also be quick. A lengthy buying process can discourage customers from converting. And hence, you may end up losing a quality lead. So, make sure that your buying process is quick.
# Expectation for a simplified process
Thanks to the increasing competition, online businesses and marketers are trying to give their consumers an experience as convenient as possible. Be it purchase, exchange, return, refund, or anything, customers shopping through mobile phones not only expect it to be quick but also simple.
As a result, businesses are now trying to simplify their processes to a maximum. In fact, you must have seen many ecommerce stores capitalising on this– “Easy returns”. And such practices do help companies improve their conversion rates. So, one take away for your online business is, to attract more mobile-using customers. It is important to keep your customer engagement processes as simple as possible.
# Consumers are spoilt with options
Earlier, one had to go to the store and request owners to stock a desired product. But now, you could be chilling on your couch wearing pyjamas and still shop with your smartphone. Moreover, you are no more at the mercy of your local store-owner. You can choose from a vast variety of products and buy whatever items you want.
One sees a product and searches for it on the internet. He/she will automatically find innumerable alternatives to choose from. Just like that, the advent of online shopping through mobile phones has spoilt consumers with options. This has made it further important for businesses to stand out with their offer. Hence, as an online business owner or marketer competing in the current eCommerce world, it is crucial to develop a unique product offering.
# Social media greatly influences customer behaviour
The idea that we are independent thinkers is comforting. However, it isn’t really true. Herd mentality is still a big influencing factor. That is how social media comes into play when we talk about customer behaviour.
Most people, when researching a brand, tend to go to social media to find out how other people view a brand. If they get a positive impression, they may further engage with that business and vice versa.
Moreover, people get encouraged to buy a particular product and engage with a particular business when they see their favourite social media influencers doing so. No wonder why online businesses are exceedingly investing in social media marketing.
With the access to various social media platforms just a few clicks away, your smartphone using prospects are likely to search your business there. Hence, make sure that your business has a solid social presence.
Smartphones have revolutionised the way people use to shop. As a result, it has made a great impact on consumer behaviour. We now have more aware and educated consumers. Moreover, as smartphones have simplified the process of shopping, consumer’s patience has shrunken. They have no more tolerance for complex and time taking buying processes. Furthermore, the availability of a vast ocean of choices in the ecommerce world has made consumers quite choosy. However, the herd mentality continues to exist as social image of a business plays a big role in buying decision. Thus, social media marketing has become more important than ever. Therefore, for fruitful digital marketing, it is crucial to understand consumer behaviour.
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