Retail has so far invested in creating a mobile presence, but it has yet to harness the huge potential the mobile platform offers, a recent report (PDF) by Plastic Mobile indicates.

Though that conclusion may be a surprise, it also offers savvy businesses the opportunity to get up to speed before their competitors catch up.

We need a rethink in the industry:

  • We need to understand that fusing offline and online isn't just about ensuring coherence between the two but also about recognizing that consumers have an integrated offline and digital experience in their day-to-day lives.
  • And we must do more to take advantage of that moment when a customer gets out her smartphone inside a store.

Interesting Stats

Nearly every customer will enter your store with a secret weapon in her pocket—a smartphone—and plenty of them will use that smartphone while shopping.

If you don't have a strategy in place to get them to interact with you while they are on their phone in your shop, then you're missing a fantastic opportunity—and most retailers are indeed missing that opportunity, according to a recent review of retailers' apps by Plastic Mobile. 

Customers, on the other hand, want to be able to integrate mobile experiences while they're inside a shop, according to a recent survey by Walker Sands: 

  • 64% of survey participants say they have used their mobile device to research products while in a brick-and-mortar store.
  • 52% say they would be more likely to shop at a retailer with an in-store navigation on a mobile.
  • 59% said they would be more likely to shop at a store offering self-checkout via a mobile device.

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image of Catherine Dickinson

Catherine Dickinson is a content strategist at wholesale fashion outlet Continental Textiles.