Web & Mobile saving Retail
As per the recent study done, the current pandemic covid19 has expedited the digital initiatives in several retail companies globally, resulting in convergence i.e. web & mobile.
Web & mobile are converging to provide useful insights and are proving to be essential tools in the digital age marketing mix.
The convergence of mobile and web has brought in a revolution in the retail experience.
Companies have realized that they can woo many customers by offering mobile-savvy stores, and are making their stores truly mobile & web-ready.
There are many other applications of m-commerce like Mobile Banking, Mobile Entertainment, and Mobile Marketing which brands and retailers are using to drive footfalls into their stores.
The simplest of all mobile initiatives is SMS.
Web & Mobile – Eye-opening statistics.
- SMS messages have a whopping 98% open rate.
- Text messages have a 209% higher response rate than a phone, email, or Facebook.
- 90% of SMS messages are read within 3 minutes
It is in our human nature to embrace complicated tools in our lives and yet we forget to utilize the simplest & effective tools that life has to offer.
Retailers have still not optimized this tool i.e. SMS as yet to their advantage.
Read the impact of covid19 on retail, click here
Need of the hour- web & mobile.
The need of the hour both for retailers and brands is to embrace technology to their advantage.
This article may provide some interesting insights as to how brands are engaging in technology.
Visual merchandising to go tech-driven
Retailers can explore installing digital screens placed next to the real products which will offer the consumer loads of information, comparisons, and stories.
Encourage shoppers to engage with product tags like QR codes (signage’s like “scan here”) that consumers can scan with their smartphones, to obtain further information, or see videos of the product in use.
Visual merchandising in store-front windows will also go down this path, with touch-screen displays and digital mannequins. (holographic mannequins)
Embrace Digital payments.
In the current Pandemic, digital payments will get more traction as the customers will prefer contactless payment options.
As retailers, we need to embrace this mode of payment by engaging various payment integrators like Paypal, Apple pay, Samsung pay, Jiopay, Paytm, (in India) and most of the banking payment apps should be integrated into the point of sales system.
Recently whatsapp has started its payment module as well in some countries in order to speed up the digital payments initiatives. (Rolled out in the Indian subcontinent).
Learn about digital receipts, click here.
“The End” to Long check-out queues:
One of the reasons as stated in a study, most consumers hate to stand in never-ending long check-out queues.
Retailers can reinvent the check-out process completely by:
- By placing check-out terminal i-pads, wherein the customer can scan purchased goods and make digital payment and go.
- Click and collect – wherein the shopper can place an order prior to arriving at the store and collect it at a pre-assigned time from their convenient location.
Watch how lulu hypermarkets have innovated the “click & collect” initiative in our home ground.
Rise of social commerce:
Brands are embracing the social selling tools like Shopify tag enabled Instagram pages.
Marketers are exploring tools of digitally engaging their customers, building trust, and then finally prompting them to buy.
Luxury brands are too using Augmented reality for giving complete see-through of their stores and products virtually.
Mont Blanc (luxury writing instruments brand) came up with augmented paper. Unique innovation to make taking notes easier and engaging experience.
New Emerging social channels.
Brands have endless creative options to reach their audiences (or new audiences) more now than ever before.
An app like TikTok although new to the advertising space is one of the fastest-growing and most popular digital platforms.
30 million active users every single month (in the U.S.) and more than 150 million users worldwide.
How digital media is going to disrupt Retail?
This question has been asked and answered zillion times.
I can simply sum-up by stating:
“Digital media is now a cost of sales and Rent is now a cost of customer acquisition.”
Retailers that miss or ignore this shift will do so at their peril.
My readers may point out that all these cases are for retail brands (physical brick & mortar), how can FMCG brand integrate with the simplest technology to reach its target audience.
In order to answer, let me present you an award-winning case study wherein the HUL used a simple Missed call format to engage and promote their products innovatively in the Indian market.
Case study: Kan Khajura Tesan
The case example will resonate with my Indian readers.
The innovative Hindustan Unilever (HUL’s) stunning mobile marketing initiative that has taken rural Bihar and Jharkhand by storm. (Bihar and Jharkhand are the Indian states).
Concept – Give a miss call to 180030000123 & get entertained.
That’s the number Hindustan Unilever (HUL) uses to inject a dose of entertainment into the lives of millions of rural Indians and up its business in these areas.
Give a missed call and get your daily dose of entertainment.
KKT claims to have over 12 million users (source: Ozonetel Systems, HUL’s cloud telephony platform for KKT).
New users are being added at a staggering rate of 45,000-50,000 people a day, which is roughly over 1,800 new users every hour and
800,000 to 1 million unique consumers every three weeks.
Awards – Cannes Lion’s Effie’s won four Lions (three Gold, one Bronze).
Watch the video to understand the mechanics of this innovative initiative by an FMCG group.
Those who embrace technology will emerge as the winner.
There is a whole world outside to embrace and conquer.
Well, its time to decide…
Who are you – a winner or a loser?
References: Book-The mobile marketing revolution by Jed Alpert; livemint.com; retailnext.com; & other various publications and research notes.
About the author:
Ritesh Mohan is a passionate retail professional with over 20 years in the Retail sector, handling some of the biggest brands in beauty, fashion, and fragrances retail & FMCG sector. He has been instrumental in the growth of some of the regional brands as well in the Middle East region. Ritesh specializes in Retail management, Product development, and Brand Management, Retail Operations, Sales Management and Franchising & Business Management. He strongly believes in empowering business owners with his wisdom & experience of around two decades in the industry.