Track mobile consumers’ habits for market research

SEPTEMBER 27, 2011 – Businesses may be able to design smarter, more intuitive mobile marketing campaigns and websites tailored to being viewed on a mobile device or smartphone with the help of market research that analyzes consumers’ phone habits and preferences.

According to a study from RSR Research, a retail technology analyst firm, retailers in particular want to engage with their customers through mobile channels, but some are at a loss on how to do so.

“We’re in early days here, and most retailers are vaguely ambivalent as to what a strong mobile offering even looks like,” stated Steve Rowen, the co-author of the report. He noted that more than three-quarters – 79 percent – of respondents are fully aware that simply mimicking their ecommerce websites in a mobile page is not a “viable” approach, but he acknowledged it would take some time to achieve mobile optimization.

“There’s going to be a lot of trial and error, and even though not all new endeavors will be successful, it’s important to remember that the consumer already wants to use the device she has in her purse; even if a new tactic falls short, she’ll be eager to try it, and she’ll likely reward you for trying,” Rowen added.

The study found that 42 percent of retailers expect some growth in their mobile sales over the course of the next three years, and another 51 percent plan to see significant growth in the channel over that period.

It’s not just consumers who have an eye on how retailers are addressing mobile commerce capabilities. The analysis arm of Keynote Systems and Internet Retailer recently collaborated on the 2012 Mobile Commerce Top 300, a study that grades how those in the retail, travel and ticket industries perform in terms of mobile commerce sales in 2011.

Bill Siwicki, the managing editor of mobile commerce at Internet Retailer, said in a statement that there was more of a focus on making the user experience better on mobile devices, largely because more people are using smartphones and tablet computers. He said that in order to grow, companies would need to start analyzing their mobile businesses and should seek to improve their tools and performance.