The Shop by Text revolution in mobile commerce – Part One

BY Blu Atwood

In recent months, we’ve seen multiple technology platforms or brands announce their own version of text message based payments.  

  • Podium Payments
  • Iris Nova – DirtyLemon (Text based Shopping Cart seems precocious?)
  • WineText.com and Yummytext.com
  • PopSugar Must Have It
  • Verb Energy Bars (reference) (reference)

Why are these companies moving towards text based ordering or invoicing?  What market forces are pushing companies into a text based payment solution?

In this three part series, we will explore the question:  Why is text message marketing organically transforming into a text message shopping channel?

The primary goal for ecommerce companies is conversions and revenue, and increasingly they are seeking conversions from mobile devices as their audience has increased mobile usage.  Engage your audience where they reside not where you want them to be.

What options do you have as a merchant aspiring for more revenue from mobile users?

Option # 1 – Your Mobile Site. The No Brainer. (Or is it?)

One of the first solutions to consider is the mobile website.  Why not drive traffic to your mobile site to increase mobile conversions?  

There are several reasons why an ecommerce merchant wants to drive traffic to the mobile site. 

The benefits of mobile site traffic include behavior tracking, a channel to communicate new programs and discounts, a contact portal with Customer service and access to a full range of account services, and most importantly increasing mobile revenue using your existing online presence.  

If they are not making mobile purchases with you, they might be making them with someone else. (Hint: innovation is key!)

But what about the drawbacks to driving traffic to your mobile site?  There are many inherent challenges with mobile site usage for ecommerce companies.  

The problems of mobile traffic to your site include low mobile conversion rates, non-optimized mobile websites, slow mobile site speed, complicated checkouts with too many steps, poorly designed product pages, and lastly a User that is on the go and distracted by a dozen other notifications and apps.

The number one solution that every merchant should be pursuing is implementing mobile payments which could increase your mobile conversion rate dramatically.  This is a must pursue mobile site optimization that needs to be implemented on the product page, if possible.

However if you are like most merchants your mobile conversion rate is 3x to 4x lower than your desktop conversion rate.  

How do we make up for the rest of the mobile conversion gap?  Or even beat desktop conversion rates?

The cost of mobile advertising is a disadvantage that cuts directly against the challenges of mobile sites and compounds the issues.  Spending advertising dollars against mobile sites on Google and Facebook platforms is expensive and does not see the same ROI as desktop advertising dollars.  It’s a multifaceted problem.    

These factors contribute to the mobile conversion gap.

In the next part of this blog series, we will explore off property product merchandizing through Social Media and 3rd party marketplaces like Amazon.

Blu Atwood

Marina Strongs

Marketing Director / FlowerFix

“We like the direct and immediate results using Textual. We've generated Shop by Text subscribers quickly, and the conversion rate is unbeatable. The majority of orders come in right away with just a few tricklers!”

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