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A fifth of eTailers fail to engage mobile customers, finds Mastek study

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Research into how the top 50 online retailers are using mobile as part of a multichannel approach has found that more than a fifth – 22% to be precise – of eTailers do not have a mobile optimised website or an application available for smartphone users, meaning that many are missing a valuable opportunity to capture mobile customers and incentivise them to shop.

The study by Mastek, a global IT solutions provider for the retail sector, found that nearly one in three retailers (28%) have more than one mobile application available to engage with customers and 20% have developed loyalty apps that offer smartphone users special offers or link to incentive schemes.

However, with the growing imperative in the retail industry for integrated multi-channel campaigns that take advantage of the growth in mobile customers, few eTailers are putting it into practice with their m-commerce strategies. Whilst 95% of mobile websites are now transactional, a surprising 75% of mobile applications are still not able to accept or process customer orders meaning retailers risk losing customers at the point of sale or reducing competitive advantage by being unable to satisfy immediate buying needs.

Mark Williams, director of retail at Mastek, comments on what the results reveal: “Mobile services are continuing to boom and provide a great opportunity for retailers to develop new growth strategies. However, the results show that many eTailers fall short on developing mobile commerce campaigns designed to grow revenues. The rise of smartphone customers and the development of an omniscient internet means that today’s constantly-connected consumers are using mobile devices at all points in the shopping lifecycle, cementing its status as one of the most disruptive technologies on the high street.

With the quick-paced developments taking place in the mobile space including the rise of mobile payments and the take-up of near field communications, eTailers have to innovate and recognise that smartphones can be a valuable tool for capturing customer attention and boosting sales conversions.”

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