Mobile Commerce

Mcommerce and How It Works: a Guide for Businesses

read 5 min

Mobile commerce (mcommerce) is on the rise—dramatically. This is primarily down to one factor: the stupefying increase in mobile phone ownership. According to Statista, the total number of mobile devices worldwide is set to reach 18.22 billion by 2025—a rise of four billion compared to 2020 numbers. 

That’s 2.5 phones for every man, woman, and child on the planet. 

People inevitably want to use them for various activities, including mcommerce. We’ll take a look at what characterizes mcommerce and see how it works and what it can do for your business.

Mcommerce – what is it?

The rise in m-commerce has been remarkable.

Image sourced from oberlo.com

But how do we define mcommerce? Mcommerce is any transaction conducted with the use of a smartphone, tablet, or any other handheld device. Anything can be bought like this—from holidays to cars to phone answering systems for small business organizations. 

What mcommerce represents beyond argument is a terrific commercial opportunity. One thing to note right now, before we move on, is that mcommerce isn’t necessarily a straight alternative to a brick-and-mortar store. Some of the best mcommerce apps work in conjunction with traditional shops. It’s in this omnichannel approach that mcommerce can really excel. 

Varieties of mcommerce

1 – Mobile payment apps

By downloading apps to their phones, smartphone users are able to send money to commercial entities in return for goods and services rendered. 

The development of near-field communication (NFC) has made the card storage facility on a smartphone supremely useful—they can be used just like contactless debit and credit cards. This is a rapidly growing area, with mobile wallet use expected to hit $350 billion by 2026

2 – Mobile banking

Free-to-use image sourced from Unsplash

Pretty much every service that was once the preserve of the bank teller can now be conducted via smartphone. This has liberated the consumer from the necessity to punctuate trips to the shops with trips to the bank in order to spend a good portion of the day in a queue. 

3 – Mcommerce apps

Again, the user downloads an app, but this time the app is all about a particular business that the user wants to buy from. 

Whatever it is, from a pizza outlet to a business selling hosted cloud PBX, this is a big jump in convenience from the need to search for the business on a browser. The app is ready to leap into action with a single press. When activated, the app can give push notifications too. 

4 – Social commerce

This is the commerce that’s driven by social media use. You’d be forgiven for thinking that social media’s just for keeping up with your friends and watching mildly diverting videos. Well, there’s a very real commercial side to it— for instance, global spending via TikTok in 2021 Q4 was $824million.

How does this work? Some social media entities have introduced a shopping facet to their brand, like Facebook Marketplace. 

5 – QR codes

These are square patterns that smartphones can scan in order to be taken to a specific part of the company’s site. They can be used to give more information about a product or service or can take a customer to the checkout stage, as well as capture that person’s details for future marketing and sales activities. 

Benefits of mcommerce

There are several reasons why mcommerce has had such an impact on ecommerce

1 – Audience size

Ignoring this growing market is a questionable economic strategy. 

There’s something else to factor in too; 15% of Americans only use a smartphone to access the internet. So it’s no use trying other means of engagement with this lot; if you’re not talking mcommerce you’ve lost them. 

2 – User experience

There are some great examples out there of sites that have been designed to give great mobile UX, including Etsy, AliExpress and Amazon, which incorporates clear and attractive layouts. This is so important when operating a device with a reduced screen size. 

Image sourced from hubspot.com

3 – Better customer support

The 24/7 convenience of smartphone-enabled shopping needs a similar level of support to ensure it runs smoothly. Now that chatbots are commonplace, they can be paired with mcommerce sites to give customers invaluable and instant assistance on their journey. 

4 – Widening payment methods

Mcommerce sites can be designed to accept a wealth of different payment methods, which, of course, makes for an easier life for the customer and results in higher sales. 

1 – One-click checkout

Say “goodbye” to those abandoned cart blues by making it as quick and easy as possible to checkout. Remember that a mcommerce user may be multitasking, so the slightest inconvenience or delay at the checkout stage can result in that cart making its forlorn way to the corner of the store. 

2 – Boost loading speed

Get the loading speed down. If that means simplifying parts of the site, so be it. Make it simple, and make it speedy. 

3 – Responsive branding

Look into the whole field of design and responsive branding. Redesign certain elements of your ecommerce profile so that they work better with smartphones, especially in terms of image size. That 3D hologram logo might look great on the big screen but makes a marginal impact on a smartphone display (and takes an epoch to load). 

4 – Get that data

With the imminent twilight of cookies and increased attention being paid to privacy protection, it seems like it’s game over for customer data. Not so! Use zero party techniques instead, wherein the customer willingly hands over their details in the interests of enhanced personalized service. So, prioritize this aspect of your mcommerce app. 

5 – Think omnichannel

Get that clicks-to-bricks (and back again) facility super-smooth so that you’re maximizing your chance of making the sale in the manner that best suits the customer at that point in time. 

6 – Inventory solutions

Developments helping a business owner to keep track of stock are always coming on stream. For instance, there’s one that allows you to track inventory on Shopify.

7 – Augmented reality (AR)

This is an area that lends itself very well to mcommerce. Ikea, for instance, allows you to superimpose images of its products on your home’s interior as you see it through your smartphone. 

Before hanging up

So, the future’s bright. The future’s mobile. Mcommerce represents a collection of very exciting possibilities for businesses that can seize them. Whether your business is one of them is down to you. Handheld e-commerce success is in your hands. 

Jessica Day – Senior Director, Marketing Strategy, Dialpad

Jessica Day is the Senior Director for Marketing Strategy at Dialpad, a modern business communications platform that offers the best business VoIP and elevates every kind of conversation to the next level—turning conversations into opportunities. She is an expert in collaborating with multifunctional teams to execute and optimize marketing efforts, for both company and client campaigns. Jessica has also written for other domains such as Getsitecontrol and HeyCarson. Here is her LinkedIn.

Written by Jessica Day

Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed here by Fashinnovation’s columnists are their own, not those of Fashinnovation.

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