Something's Happening Here
Jennifer Markse, Editor-in-Chief -- Home Textiles Today, 7/6/2009 12:00:00 AM
A mobile phone marketing strategy looks to be the new must-have arrow in the retail quiver. News of such strategies has recently been on the rise.
Sears, Target, Amazon and Overstock late last month were named Overall Best in Class for their mobile commerce programs by Acquity Group, a California digital marketing firm that audited more than 500 businesses to identify companies that are taking the lead in developing mobile commerce.
No shocker, the audit concluded that adoption rates were lower than expected — across all categories, the company said.
"It was surprising to see the lack of marketing in place around many websites' mobile offerings," said project manager Adam Boysen.
In many instances, according to Acquity's Boysen, "in order to access a website's mobile interface you had to assume they were implementing an 'm.' subdomain. The lack of marketing around mobile offerings was much more common among middle-tier online retailers. In contrast, a few larger retailers utilized device detection techniques on their desktop site in order to present the user with an interface that's optimized for their specific device."
Confused? Me, too. Clearly, I am not in the target demo. I tried to bone up on the latest in smart phone technology by combing through Twice, the consumer electronics news weekly owned by HTT's parent company, and I quickly abandoned the search. It was like reading Swahili.
But this is why we have web savants, IT people and Search Engine Optimization experts.
But here are related headlines from retail news feeds that crossed my desk last week:
"Best Buy to Open 400 Mobile Phone Stores;""Hardees Goes Mobile with New Campaign;""Barnes & Noble Develops M-Commerce App for iPhone;""Urban Outfitters Launches Mobile E-Commerce;""You Can't Jam an E-Commerce Site into a Web Commerce Site;""Slew of Mobile PCs Giving Marketers Branding Headaches;""Mobile Phone Can Lead a Shopper Out of One Store and Into Another."
The good news is that there appears to be some time to sort out these strategies. As was the case in the early e-commerce years, adoption rates in the United States are still fairly low. A Neilson Mobile poll fielded last year found only about 9.2 million mobile subscribers were using their handsets to make purchases. That means about 96% of us haven't gone there yet.
But as the technology becomes more standardized (and less confusing), those numbers are likely to grow.
We would love your feedback!
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