Personally curated shopping experiences are helping unlock the power of mobile commerce
Whether you love it or hate it, shopping is a commitment. Even when you have a good idea of what you’re looking for, the process can involve time-consuming research and multiple store visits as you sort through the available choices to find the product that’s right for you. When that same experience gets translated to a mobile device, it can become even more of a chore.
The Mobile Commerce Playbook is a 12-week series from PSFK and Braintree exploring the key trends that are defining the future of mobile commerce. Be sure to check back often for more great articles here and on Braintree’s site, and don’t forget to download the full Mobile Commerce Playbook on our Slideshare page.
Limited screen real estate and temperamental load times mean that every click, pinch and zoom, or keystroke required to get customers to the perfect purchase option is another obstacle to overcome—one too many and you’ve lost a potential sale.
In instances where too much choice becomes overwhelming, companies need to provide filters that consider a person’s interests and needs to make the mobile shopping experience more visual, personal, and easy to navigate.
This shift toward curated mobile shopping experiences is part of a larger trend we’re calling “Personal Storefronts.” These services simplify the process of discovering and buying products on a mobile device using tailored recommendations, bolder imagery, and swipeable interfaces. Below, we highlight some of our favorite examples from the marketplace:
Spring is a New York City–based startup that is making impulse buying a swifter process for shoppers by adopting a familiar navigation model—a vertical feed somewhat similar to Instagram’s interface. Upon signing up, shoppers are given a scrollable list of retail brands and associated products, which they can add or remove based on preference. As the user begins to follow brands and expert-curated collections, and “like” individual items, the app’s algorithm gets better at suggesting a tailored list of recommendations through its “Discover” feature.
Spring has more than 100 major retail partners, including brands like Nicole Miller, Michael Kors, and Levi’s. When a shopper makes a purchase through the app, all fulfillment and customer service inquiries are handled by the brand. The goal of the platform is to create access to a direct-to-consumer model that allows brands to bypass department stores, while delivering a more intuitive mobile shopping experience to its users.
Kwoller is a personal shopping service that borrows user-interaction aspects from dating app Tinder, allowing shoppers to swipe through a series of products to quickly sort out what’s relevant.
The app lets the user swipe right if they like a suggestion—saving it to a love list for later purchase—and swipe left if they don’t, with an added upward swipe to share the product with friends. Based on these actions, the app learns the preferences of its user over time to further tailor its product suggestions. Its thoughtful social sharing integrations enable shoppers to easily get a second opinion from trusted friends or add suggested products to their personal Pinterest boards.
Similarly, Estée Lauder’s Clinique brand has developed a feature-rich mobile site that lets shoppers find the right color of makeup, watch informational videos, and live chat with online representatives. Created with a responsive web design, the site offers 70 interactive components that are intended to simplify decision making by offering tabs like “Personalized, Just for You” and “Your Info at Your Fingertips.” These features let customers quickly reference previous purchases, save consultation results, replenish their favorite products, and create shopping lists. If more assistance is needed, shoppers can consult with a representative for advice and tips.
These examples demonstrate how curated choice and smarter navigation can transform the mobile device into an even more powerful tool for commerce. In order to maximize the reach and effectiveness of these devices, merchants must take cues from other best-in-class mobile platforms, tailoring the experience to the specific needs and behaviors of its shoppers.
The Mobile Commerce Playbook is a 12-week series from PSFK and Braintree exploring the key trends that can help merchants take a forward-looking approach to refining their mobile offerings. Be sure to check back often as we continue to examine the future of mobile commerce. You can also download the full Mobile Commerce Playbook and check out the report on our Slideshare page. Don’t forget to head over to Braintree’s site for more great content!