Mobile retail moves fast, so to help you keep up, we’ve got a roundup of mobile e-commerce and retail news. The National Retail Federation predicts online sales will grow up to 12% in 2017 including mobile. Mobile phone shopping now surpasses desktop or tablet, and on the weekends can make up half of all purchases according to new research from Criteo which also found the average shopping basket during Super Bowl week was $150.
At Starbird’s first chicken fast food outlet in Sunnyvale, CA, consumers can dine-in or “drive-thru” via their mobile curbside delivery service. Forrester predicts China’s mobile sales will reach $1 trillion by 2020, a sign of things to come in the US. One-third of retail web traffic comes from mobile devices, only 11% of sales come from mobile, according to Forrester. Mobile sales bottlenecks created challenges for Starbucks and other retailers, forcing some rethinking of new retail strategies and implementation.
India’s Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM) app now has more than 14 million registered users and plans to launch cashback and referral programs soon. A new Aadhaar Pay app will allow consumers to pay even though they don’t and debit cards, mobile phones or e-wallets. The US the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has warned consumers about fake apps which recently included Dollar General and Salvatore Ferragamo. The new retail Square Retail app adds backend tools that include inventory management, CRM and employee tools.
Mobile retail now a “thing”
In Seattle, Amazon is testing its mobile Treasure Truck, which sells products through flash sales powered by mobile in a local neighborhood. US mobile food trucks served $1.2 billion in business in 2015 and service companies are adopting mobile delivery as well, including: a financial planner in Charlotte and full-service grocery in St. Louis. Even in the Middle East, mobile is popping up where a Saudi woman launched a mobile retail truck to sell her abayas to busy, housebound moms.
National Retail Federation predicts online sales will grow 8% to 12% in 2017
According to 2017 sales forecasts from the National Retail Federation (NRF), online and other non-store online sales are expected to grow between 8 percent and 12 percent over last year’s sales numbers.
In a statement announcing the agency’s 2017 predictions, NRF chief economist Jack Kleinhenz said it was clear online sales will continue to increase this year, driving retail industry growth.
“It is important to realize that virtually every major retailer sells online and many of those sales will be made by discount stores, department stores and other traditional retailers,” said Kleinhenz. “Retailers sell to consumers however they want to buy, whether it’s in-store, online or mobile.” Via marketingland.com
Mobile searches often lead to in-store purchases: report
A new report from Criteo looks at the many transactions made during the Super Bowl, what categories dominated and how customers made those purchases.
The most important factor to note is that food and groceries was far and away the dominant category when it come to the week of the Super Bowl. Criteo found that the average online shopping cart at a grocery retailer was over $150 for that week.
What is more is that Criteo routinely finds that mobile dominates when it comes to these types of purchases. Via mobilecommercedaily.com
Mobile ordering is reinventing the drive-thru experience
At Starbird’s first outlet in Sunnyvale, California, consumers can dine-in or “drive-thru” via their mobile-based curbside delivery service. If choosing the latter, customers can download Starbird’s proprietary app, which allows them to view the men”taht’u, make selections, and pay for their meal, all ahead of time.
After arriving at the outlet, customers alert restaurant employees by selecting an “I’m here” button in the app that kicks off their order’s preparation. While Starbird did consider using proximity technology to begin order preparation before customers actually arrived, according to President Aaron Noveshen, the method was too inconsistent to effectively minimise wait times. Instead, the restaurant created a simple, easy-to-assemble menu, designed to ensure orders could be made to order and fulfilled as quickly as possible. Starbird promises mobile orders will be delivered to cars within 3-5 minutes of pressing the “I’m here” button. Via mobilepaymentstoday.com
Mobile shopping sales in China tipped to reach $1 trillion by 2020
Chinese online retail sales via a mobile phone are expected to reach $1 trillion in 2020, according to new data from Forrester.
Chinese consumers spent $681 billion on online retail in 2016, with online sales accounting for more than 19% of all retail sales. Forrester expects this share will increase to 24% by 2021.
China accounts for nearly 80% of online retail sales in Asia-Pacific, followed by Japan with $93 billion, South Korea with $46 billion, Australia with $25 billion, and India with $16 billion. However, India is expected to overtake Australia in 2019 when its online retail market hits $64 billion in 2020 – almost twice the size of Australia’s at $38 billion. Via thedrum.com
IBMVoice: How Artificial Intelligence Can Help To Jumpstart The Retail Industry’s Mobile Strategy
Mobile has become an integral part of the shopping experience. As consumers spend more time with their mobile devices than with desktop and notebook computers combined, they’re looking to their smartphones and tablets to complete more complex transactions.
Yet, there is still room to grow for the retail industry’s mobile experiences. While nearly one-third of retailer web traffic is from mobile devices, only 11 percent of sales come from mobile, according to Forrester’s U.S. Mobile Phone and Tablet Commerce Forecast, 2015 – 2020.
Mobile gives retailers opportunities to entice new customers, and retain returning customers, by allowing them to shop on their own terms. Retailers can engage customers across touchpoints that include the point-of-sale, checkout, and by means of multi-channel customer relationship management (CRM) engagement. Via forbes.com
A digital bottleneck: Mobile payments breed new challenges for to-go retailers
Starbucks is addressing the digital bottleneck phenomenon with additional staff and in-store kiosks completely dedicated to the filling of digital orders. Starbucks recently added a text-messaging feature that notifies customers when their orders are ready and last week introduced voice-activated orders through its mobile app and Amazon’s Alexa artificial-intelligence platform.
Amazon itself is experimenting with Amazon Go convenience stores, which eschew checkout lines and cash registers in favor of a mobile-payment system that can automatically scans items and charge customers as they leave the store. This suggests that it might not be long before cash registers at many retail outlets become obsolete.
Matthew Katz, CEO of Los Angeles-based payment-services provider Verifi, said the growth in mobile payments in the U.S. will inevitably lead retailers to rethink how stores are laid out and modify employee training to focus more on the order-fulfillment process and less on using point-of-sale terminals. Via salon.com
BHIM App Registration Has Crossed 14 Million, Says IT Minister
The recently launched Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM) app has seen more than 140 lakh (14 million) registrations, IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said in New Delhi on Friday. “The recently launched BHIM app by the government of India will unleash the power of mobile phones for digital payments and financial inclusion. So far, over 140 lakh people have adopted the BHIM app,” Prasad said.
He added that the government will launch two new schemes to promote the usage of BHIM – Referral Bonus Scheme for individuals and a Cashback Scheme for merchants.
Aadhaar Pay, a merchant version of Aadhaar Enabled Payment System, will also be launched shortly. This will be specifically beneficial for those who do not have debit cards, mobile wallets and mobile phones. Via gadgets.ndtv.com
Fake Apps on Rise: How to Protect Your Brand in App Store
As if the rise of fake news wasn’t disturbing enough, the “fake trend” is now turning to a new target: brands.
While the National Retail Federation and others boasted about solid consumer spending during the holiday season, the Federal Trade Commission urged shoppers to be vigilant. The FTC just issued a warning to consumers to check apps carefully before handing over personal information and making purchases, thanks to spike in imposter apps looking to install malware or steal financial data.
“Fake apps” first emerged a couple of years ago, when illegitimate antivirus apps successfully scammed users into spending a lot of money to, ironically, try and keep their computers safe. The issue is now cropping up again on a far larger scale. During the most recent holiday shopping season, dozens of brands were targeted, with fake apps appearing for brands ranging from the Dollar Store to Salvatore Ferragamo. Via adage.com
Square for Retail aims to be the only store software most shop owners need
Square has a new approach to retail customers it’s launching today, with a brand new Square Retail app that complements a comprehensive backend package of tools that include complete coverage of inventory management, customer relationship management and employee tools.
The new offering is designed to really provide a next-level retail solution for merchants and shop owners who need more than just the Square Reader and basic square mobile app. Square’s Point of Sale Lead Matthew O’Connor explained to me that the solution can and does scale depending on the needs of their clients, but can serve any customers from a one-location shop to a merchant with multiple storefronts and lots of inventory to track.
“We’re mostly targeting folks where it’s generally what we call ‘owner-led,’ so it’s usually one decision maker who’s making a decision for how they run their business. It will scale to hundreds of locations, it will scale to hundreds of thousands of SKUs and items.” Via techcrunch.com
Amazon’s Living Lab: Reimagining Retail on Seattle Streets
One of Amazon’s more puzzling retail experiments in Seattle is the Treasure Truck, a roaming delivery truck retrofitted with carnival-style lights and signs, from which customers can pick up items offered during flash sales through the Amazon mobile app. The truck, which seems like the offspring of a billboard and an ice cream truck, has sold wild mahi-mahi steaks, paddle boards and Nintendo game consoles.
Adam Croft, an audio producer for Microsoft, described the Treasure Truck as a “party bus” and said he had bought a drone and a “Star Wars” BB-8 droid toy from it. He has also patronized Amazon’s bookstore in Seattle and thought it was clever of the company to require customers to scan bar codes on books with their phones to get prices, which can fluctuate.
“Seattleites will say they hate Amazon taking over downtown, but at the same time when Amazon rolls out something special, after everyone complains about it, the first thing people want to do is go check it out,” said Mr. Croft, who says his employment with another technology company doesn’t color his views of Amazon…. Via nytimes.com
Deals on Wheels: Why More Retailers Are Taking to the Streets
Many of us have experienced grabbing a quick bite to eat from a food truck, one of the original forms of a mobile business.
And it’s no wonder — food trucks have taken on a pervasive role in pop culture. That, and more and more food businesses are opting to serve their meals on wheels. In 2015, annual revenue from food trucks in the U.S. reached $1.2 billion, a steady 12.4% increase over the previous five years.
And while many of us are familiar food trucks, the idea of a mobile business is spreading to non-food industries. Over the last few years, businesses of all kinds have hit the road, from a financial planner in Charlotte to a full-service grocery store in St. Louis. Even Amazon launched its Treasure Truck in Seattle that connects digital mobile with physical mobile.
According to the American Mobile Retail Association (AMRA), the mobile business industry has grown to nearly 1,000 trucks across the U.S.. Established brands and retail hopefuls are outfitting trucks, trailers, buses, and recreational vehicles as a more cost-effective solution to launching a traditional (and stationery) retail storefront. Via shopify.com
Saudi designer launches mobile retail truck
A Saudi woman designer has made a breakthrough in the retail business by launching a mobile retail truck to sell her abayas, the loose over-garment worn by most women across the Arabian Gulf countries.
Manar Al Rawi said that her decision to move from the traditional retail space to the mobile truck was essentially driven by the wish to overcome two major challenges that women usually faced.
“Women have often to deal with difficulties to move and reach traditional shops and boutiques and they also have an issue with not having enough time,” Manar said, quoted by Saudi daily Okaz on Thursday. Via gulfnews.com
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