Study: Consumers’ adoption of retailer mobile apps surges

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Study: Consumers’ adoption of retailer mobile apps surges

By Marianne Wilson - 08/23/2018
More people are using retailers’ apps than ever before.

That’s according to a new study by Synchrony, which found that consumers are downloading retailers’ mobile apps at double the rate of years past. Also, more consumers are leveraging the apps to buy, browse, read product reviews, access coupons and find a local store.

The study revealed that 67% of consumers have downloaded a retailer’s app, and more than half of those did so specifically for a coupon or discount offer. Nearly half of consumers that have downloaded a retailer’s app use it for purchases.

“In today’s competitive landscape, a mobile application is not just another piece of technology for retailers, it is a vital tool to engage shoppers with their brand,” said Maya Mikhailov, senior VP, chief marketing officer, GPShopper, a developer of mobile apps that was acquired by Synchrony in 2017. “Done well, retail apps engage both in and out of stores with personalized experiences and easy credit solutions.”

Other findings from the “Synchrony 2018 Digital Study” include:

• Most shoppers think mobile wallets will replace physical ones by the year 2025. Sixty percent of U.S. consumers believe that by the year 2025, the average shopper will carry their phone and no physical wallet.

• Consumers feel very positive about credit card features within the retailer app. Fifty-three percent of consumers said they have card servicing features with the app. Of this group, 77% rated the features extremely/very valuable. As a result, retailers are quickly including payment features in their apps, and forward-looking companies are enabling these features.

• Smart speaker adoption has doubled since 2017. One-in-five consumers now say they own a smart speaker. Consumers aged 50 and under are driving usage, but all age groups showed significant growth since last year’s study. Smart speakers are still primarily used to answer routine search requests, but there is great potential for increased usage in shopping, purchasing and customer service

• Consumers that use retail mobile applications are a retailer’s top shoppers, Mikhailov added. And they want their apps to be tailored to their unique shopping experiences and preferences.

Synchrony recommends the following to help enhance the customer experience:

1. Provide a consistent customer experience across all channels – mobile is the driver to bring together all the user experience opportunities.

2. Engage with customers in a personalized manner by leveraging data and analytics -- provide unique offers and discounts via mobile to further extend brand loyalty.

3. Offer simple and easy payment solutions that are seamless and secure; create an in-app frictionless mobile commerce experience.

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