Introduction to Mobile Commerce


Mobile Commerce, also called m-Commerce, is related to any transactions done using one of the most accessible devices nowadays — cellphones. This introduction to mobile commerce includes ways that users employ to do commercial activities using their mobile devices.

We hardly even notice how frequently we use mobile commerce in our day to day lives. Whether it’s for shopping, using a cash app, or paying bills, all of these constitute mobile commerce. You first need to be familiarized with your mobile users in order to provide the best mobile commerce experience. The variety of ways through which users can transact using their phones will be discussed here.

Introduction to Mobile Commerce and Shopping

Mobile devices became instantly popular because of their accessibility and flexibility in terms of function. Most mobile users use their devices to do shopping and they acquire goods by connecting to the mobile web. Through mobile commerce, people have the ability to compare the products and prices that they wish to purchase.

Simply put, mobile shopping includes anything that you shop using a mobile device. Mobile shopping might be someone’s pastime, like scrolling through a store and ordering books or other goods through their phones. Mobile shopping can also be a regular activity wherein you do weekly grocery shopping using your mobile device. Additionally, the most common items that people buy using mobile devices are music and applications because they are cheaper.

Different factors can affect the behavior of a mobile shopper. These are some of the examples:

  • Goal — People look into categories and know what to do.
  • Location — Advertisements should be appropriate to the area of the shopper.
  • Attentiveness — People pay close attention to an established system.
  • Pastime — People scroll to kill time.
  • Take time — Users consume time as long as they need.
  • Urgency — Users prioritize as they complete a task.
  • Routine — Consumers make use of a pattern for accessing information.
  • Passion — Users show a high likelihood of category information.
  • Trust — Consumers desire a source that is safe and trusted.

Introduction to Mobile Commerce — Wallets and NFC

Virtual wallets that allow you to store currency are called mobile wallets. You can make use of mobile wallets whenever you wish to purchase something via a mobile device. Mobile wallets offer consumers with a convenient and seamless experience. In addition, NFC is the technology that mobile wallets often use.

Near-Field Communication technology lets users transfer data in a short range. This is what we know of as scanning or swiping phones in order to pay for something. To use NFC, it requires a chip and equipment to scan the chip. Lastly, NFC technology has a huge potential that might go even beyond such simple payments.

Introduction to Mobile Commerce — Tickets and Coupons

This type of mobile commerce lets users purchase tickets using their phones. It is being used to purchase tickets for transportation, carpark, live shows, and other ticket-related activities, among other things. After buying a ticket, a scannable piece of data is sent to the phone and is presented to the station. The whole process behind mobile ticketing offers a fast and accessible administration.

Mobile coupons do not differ in a greater sense than tickets. Users can get coupons from a brand after adhering to a set of conditions including user subscription. This mobile commerce can retain customers and keep them engaged in your brand.

Mobile Currency

This type of mobile commerce allows users to purchase goods by using e-currency from their phones. Consider that this currency is managed by the governing banks of a country.

With mobile currency, a user can take money from the system. This is done by utilizing SMS to send money to others, which requires no internet connection. The users then can convert the e-currency to real money through an outlet or an ATM.

The benefit of this Mobile commerce is that it is highly accessible to people even without bank accounts and internet connections.

Mobile Banking

This mobile commerce uses mobile application, web, or text from a device to carry out financial transactions. Mobile banking offers seamless p2p transactions. These are the different channels of mobile banking:

  • Application — Users can have full access to the features of their account via mobile-friendly software.
  • Web — Mobile users have access to the web version of an online bank application. It is accessible from a browser and allows users to make transfers, payments, and more.
  • Text — Users can do simple mobile banking through SMS or USSD. This is accessible and efficient for users without smartphones. Text banking lets users receive alerts and updates and send transfers.

Best Practices for Mobile Commerce

The first thing to consider in mobile experience is prioritizing user experience. The characteristics of most mobile users are search oriented, driven by purpose, and clear. You need to adhere to these characteristics and provide the users with what they need in the best possible way. Use this practices for mobile commerce:

  1. Add a search bar with an auto suggestion for a quick and easy query.
  2. Add navigation buttons to keep it simple and easy to navigate.
  3. Limit the menu to being short and direct.
  4. Use the hierarchy of layouts, with decreasing importance from the top.
  5. Include a save button so that users can go back to it later. You can also include suggestions.
  6. Add images to represent your product and attract users.
  7. Add filters in search results with a purpose that users can instantly locate what they want.
  8. Avoid requiring people to register in order to buy something. Many users abandon products because of the lengthy process of registering on a phone screen.

These practices go to waste if the payment system has no optimal security. With that, ensure the users that their details are secure in order to keep them engaged with your brand.

Starting your mobile commerce platform, you need to promote it to other media platforms. Promoting your m-Commerce will further engage and heighten your interactions with other users. During the promotion, you may offer special coupons for mobile users and employ QR codes.

© Image credits to David Buchi

Posted in Mobile Marketing





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