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How Mobile Apps Will Change ECommerce

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2016 has seen remarkable changes in how people view online shopping as a whole. In 2015, physical stores were full of people swarming to grab the lowest Black Friday deals, but in 2016, we’ve seen tides change as people now turn to online shopping because of its hassle-free benefits.

Even though sales were expected to go up, but that’s no longer the case. “In 2016, consumers can find most of those deals online over the course of a couple days, and they don’t have to brave massive crowds to do it,” Fortune concludes.

Online shopping has indeed reshaped people’s buying habits. Before, Black Friday sales were anticipated as its date comes near. However, in 2016, Amazon dared to change the status quo as they started their Black Friday deals as early as November 1.

TechCrunch has crunched the numbers for us, with a report on Adobe’s final numbers on Black Friday. They figured out that the year’s sales surpassed estimates, with $3.34 billion – 21.6 percent growth, year-over-year.

Thanksgiving and Black Friday mobiles sales were over the top, with top online retailers like Amazon, Target, and Walmart releasing numbers that mobile has opened a new era of online shopping, with its tumultuous contribution on their online sales via exclusive mobile app deals.

2016 was indeed the year of mobile ecommerce began taking over ecommerce websites.

They added that, “in 2020, mobile apps are projected to generate 188.9 billion U.S. dollars in revenues via app stores and in-app advertising.”

Moving app: from web to app

Binny Bansal’s gamble on going app-only earned mixed reactions. It did not take too long before Amazon India caught up with their growth.

Flipkart has dared to go where other sites won’t try; an app-only ecommerce store in India. Despite the revenue and its ruling power in India, this only gave Amazon India the asset it needed to get ahead of the competition. Perhaps it was too soon to leave the desktop-only audience, however, Flipkart paved the way that it is possible to run a store that would reach any user from any part of the country (or the world) via a mobile app.

While shutting down websites in favor of mobile apps hasn’t been a prerogative for most companies online, mobile apps has shown remarkable performance in this year’s sales report.

A mobile app only environment does wonders for an ecommerce site, but as we’ve seen with Flipkart’s current condition, it is without its own cons as well.

Data is consolidated in the app environment. We are used to tracking sales both in desktop and mobile. Through a mobile app, efforts are more targeted and user experience is consistent through and through. What you collect is raw data; no need to think of other common factors that are in conflict with desktop usage. Because people spend more time on apps than on a mobile website, you can learn more about their shopping behaviors; use this to your advantage.

In addition to that, consider your mobile app as a direct marketing channel for your brand. It does not create friction since you solely own your audience’s attention. There are no distractions that may pull him out of the sales funnel.

However, if a user cannot find what he’s looking for in your app, it is only natural that they shift their attention and use search engines to find other options aside from your own. Did you know that users browse 286% more products in apps than on the mobile web? A poorly designed mobile app can significantly reduce interest among its audience.

Perhaps one of the main benefits of mobile app usage is faster loading times. Because a mobile app is considerably lighter than a desktop website, user experience can be improved. However, if fast loading times are countered by a poor interface design, bounce rates are still expected to increase due to audience’s disinterest.

Why customers prefer mobile apps over mobile websites

One of the biggest considerations if you are panning on setting up a mobile app to complement your mobile website is your users. Studies have shown that customers prefer mobile apps over mobile websites. Some of the reasons are the following.

Using the features of smartphones, everything is almost automatic with mobile apps – especially with regards to payments and checkout. With mobile apps, it is much easier to pay whether it be by using mobile banking apps, scanning your credit card, or by digital wallets.

Mobile applications are truly dedicated to make things easier for consumers to do their transactions.

Mobile apps offer improved flexibility for its users. First of all, apps are way more responsive than mobile websites. Also, there are fewer connectivity issues – if you have a stable internet connection, your dedicated app would almost never have a problem working. Mobile apps can also make use of smartphones’ features such as Bluetooth, GPS, and the phone’s camera.

Aside from that, mobile apps for ecommerce sites are far easier to navigate than mobile websites on a phone’s browser. So even when the user is moving, he can comfortably use the app to shop!

Again, a lot of consumers are utilizing apps nowadays. They actually expect more known brands to have a dedicated app. That being the case, companies should see the need to come up with a mobile app to increase their reach and engagement, on a channel that is used by a lot of potential customers.

Another beauty of mobile apps is the personalization that it offers. Mobile apps personalize the shopping experience of customers by sending push notifications (whether it be for news, or promos).

With mobile apps, it will also be easier to collect data from the user for you to be able to understand their behavior better. With the help of mobile analytics tools, you can make use of these data to further personalize the shopping experience of mobile app users. ecommerce-aside, you can even use mobile apps for fundraising events, and more.

That’s why you should see it beyond its icon – this is the closest you can get to be in touch with your audience, and your customers.

Mobile apps will continue to change how shopping is done

True enough, these reasons are enticing consumers to utilize mobile apps instead of mobile websites. And this is not just a fad – it is seen as an actual change brought in by the development of mobile devices. And as we further dwell into the mobile era, it is expected that mobile apps will continue to change the way online shopping is done.

Businesses need not to look further if they want to have a mobile app of their business. Should they want to use it for lead generation or sales, there’s a wide range of mobile app builders that they can choose from. If you’re looking for an all-in-one solution, look no further – Bizness Apps can take care of the work for you!

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About the Author

This article is written by Andrew Gazdecki, the founder and CEO of BiznessApps.

Callum Connects

Agnes Yee, Legal & Compliance Recruiter of Space Executive

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Agnes Yee started Space Executive in Singapore, which is a hub for businesses in some of the world’s fastest growing economies.

What’s your story?
After graduation, I joined a design media company as a Business Development Executive, during the era when ‘reading a magazine online’ was unheard of. I believe that laid the foundation for being unfazed by rejections.

I fell into recruitment pre-GFC and rode the highs and lows in the early years. A decade later, I decided to set up my own recruitment company, partly because I could. I’m acutely aware of the face that being an Asian female in Singapore is sometimes a privilege, and that many women in the world are living a very different existence.
Thereafter, we joined Space Executive as part of a merger. I am currently the Partner of Space Executive, a recruitment company focused specialist disciplines, including Legal, Finance, Digital, Sales and Marketing and Change. We also run Space Ventures, a venture capital business, which invests in seed and pre-series A businesses.

What excites you most about your industry?
On a daily basis, we’re influencing how one spends a third of their day. It is interesting how the Internet has transformed the industry, and I’m excited to see how we can harness technology to bring us to the next phase of this business.

The VC is an extension of applying our skills and experience in reading people. We very much invest in the people as much as the idea. Being a native Singaporean, it’s been exhilarating watching Southeast Asia becoming a hotbed of ideas; and young entrepreneurs simply daring to dream.

What’s your connection to Asia?
I’m a born and bred Singaporean. I love that I speak both English and Mandarin, grew up playing with Indian friends and eating Malay food.

Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore for the low barriers of entry to set up a business, but has to be China (and Hong Kong) for their hunger and constant innovation.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
青春不要留白 which translates to ‘Don’t waste your youth.’

Who inspires you?
Anyone who has gone against the grain.

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
It wasn’t recent but reading the article on https://waitbutwhy.com/2015/12/the-tail-end.html never fails to blow my mind how little time we have left. Charting our lives in weeks, and realising I only have enough time left to enjoy 60 Christmas turkeys, read 300 books (all if I’m lucky); and mostly, I’m left with the last 5% of the time that I spend in-person with my parents.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I’m cognisant that every decision I made in life has brought me to where I am today, and I wouldn’t change one thing. But I’d really like to have had more time to travel.

How do you unwind?
Exercise and wine.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Trekking any mountain in Asia. It brings us back to the most basic. To overcome elements of nature and our own mind.

Everyone in business should read this book:
Start with Why, Simon Sinek

Shameless plug for your business:
Space Executive started in Singapore, a hub for businesses in some of the world’s fastest growing economies. We assist organisations in accessing a targeted and specialised, and often times transient talent pool.

Out of Singapore, we have recruited across 14 countries; and have embarked on our global expansion plans with offices in Hong Kong and London this year, and US, Japan and Europe in the following years.

Space Ventures provides funding, management and financial guidance to young businesses with original ideas. We have invested in peer to peer lending platforms, credit scoring, social media education, and other start-ups spanning diverse industries. We are always interested in hearing more about new ideas.

How can people connect with you?
https://www.linkedin.com/in/agnesyee/

This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews

Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.

Connect with Callum here:
twitter.com/laingcallum
linkedin.com/in/callumlaing
Download free copies of his books here: www.callumlaing.com

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Chrystie Dao-Szabo, Founder of iPayMy

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Chrystie Dao-Szabo founded iPaymy for Business – a secure and easy to use
platform enabling SMEs to pay rent, salaries, invoices, and even corporate tax using the credit cards they already have in their wallet today.

What’s your story?
I’m Chrystie Dao-Szabo, and I’ve worked as an international banker for over 22 years. During that time, I travelled through Asia, Australia and Europe, and everywhere I saw how my clients struggled with managing their finances and keeping cash around.

I wanted to use my experience to help them, but I also knew the solution they needed didn’t exist yet. This pushed me to give up on my secure career, and instead look into the innovative world of FinTech for an answer.

This is how I founded iPaymy – at its launch, a platform to help consumers pay their monthly expenses using their credit cards. We’ve grown a lot since, and today, iPaymy for Business is a platform that allows business owners to use their credit cards to pay for rent, salaries, invoices and taxes, freeing up their cash for business-critical operations.

What excites you most about your industry?
What excites me most about FinTech is it’s culture of constant disruption, thanks to cool and innovative products and services coming out every day.

What’s your connection to Asia?
I was born in Vietnam, grew up in Australia and worked in Asia, Europe and Australia. Being raised by traditional Vietnamese parents meant that deep down I was still an Asian at heart, so I have a strong connection with the region.

Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore of course. It’s easy to do business, English is the main language, and the infrastructures like public transportation are great. Also, the government supports local innovation in multiple ways, like giving grants for SMEs and FinTechs.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Keep giving, and one day you will receive.

Who inspires you?
My parents. My father had a successful business in Vietnam just before the fall of Saigon in 1975. After the war, my father was sent to a re-education camp for three years, which meant my mum had to bring up two young kids – a 3-year-old, me and my 4-year old brother on her own.

In 1980, we all fled Vietnam on a boat and arrived in Sydney, Australia via refugee camps in Indonesia and Singapore. There, my parents had to start over with nothing to their names and only AUD 50 given to them by the Australian government.
They went on to build several businesses in Australia!

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
The number of young and smart people who have carved out successful careers by founding their own startups (or joining really cool ones). When I was starting out my career, doing any of these was not a viable option; it was either working for an accounting firm, an insurance company or a bank.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
If I were starting out my career now, I would choose the path of joining a startup as you get to learn so much about running a business and how to assemble a winning team.

How do you unwind?
I like travelling to a beach or a resort destination and just relaxing by the pool or beach. I also like to unwind after work with a glass of champagne or wine, and a bowl of truffle fries.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Thailand. I love the people and the spicy Thai food.

Everyone in business should read this book:
The E-Myth. It’s a book series that dismantles common myths about entrepreneurship in different industries.

Shameless plug for your business:
With iPaymy for Business, SMEs can pay rent, salaries, invoices, and even corporate tax using the credit cards they already have in their wallet today. SMEs love iPaymy because it works like a credit card, but pays like cash.

iPaymy’s secure and easy to use platform reliably delivers payments to vendors while freeing up cash and providing access to interest free credit. Forget the delays and aggravations that come with traditional SME financing options. Schedule recurring payments, manage invoices, set payment reminders, and monitor payment status all from one dashboard.

It’s never been easier for SMEs to meet monthly payment obligations while keeping cash available to fuel growth, bridge receivable gaps, and make immediate investment in the supplies, services, and expertise needed to drive a growing business forward.

How can people connect with you?
You can find me on LinkedIn or contact me by email.
My LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/chrystiedaoszabo/
My email: [email protected]

Twitter handle?
https://twitter.com/ceedeees

This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews

Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.

Connect with Callum here:
twitter.com/laingcallum
linkedin.com/in/callumlaing
Download free copies of his books here: www.callumlaing.com

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