Mobile First: The Key to Customer Engagement

We have become perpetually connected to our mobile devices. They are readily available and easily accessible, and we turn to our mobile phones first for just about everything. They are the preferred method of interaction, for uses ranging from social to business to entertainment. And the mass adoption of these devices is bound to continue.

According to the International Data Corporation Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, vendors shipped a total of 1,004.2 million smartphones worldwide in 2013, up 38.4 percent from the 725.3 million units they shipped in 2012.

Given these findings, companies should rethink how customers want to engage with them using their mobile devices. Customers use their mobile phones first to interact with a company (Web, app, or phone) and then as a remote control to all the channels with which they have interacted. Many options are available today for customer service, however, only a handful address the true omnichannel experience that today's customers demand. Customers want the ability to resolve issues quickly, no matter the method of interaction.

Customer engagement in a mobile world must be:

Intelligent. Consumers want companies to know what they want. Businesses must be able to do this based on data regarding consumers' real-time interactions, history, and many other sources. Sophisticated predictive analytics is what is really needed to be smart about consumer demand.

Contextually Relevant. Consumers may interact in different channels, but to them, all their interactions make up one continuous conversation. Content from prior channels must be available at all touch points.

Proactive. Consumers want companies to offer them what they need before they even think of it. Businesses must be able to provide service in real time when they know that consumers need it. They must offer the service in the form that users want to consume it as well.

Having these solutions in mind, it is important to understand that consumers want to have an experience that is intelligent, contextually relevant, and proactive. The 2014 Internet Trends Report further expressed the need for this interactive experience as consumers themselves are actively engaging with their providers. Consumers particularly prefer such interactions to take place on their mobile devices, seeing that:

  • people spend 20 percent of their media time on mobile devices;
  • mobile devices now account for 25 percent of all Web usage, up 14 percent from a year ago; and
  • mobile Internet traffic is increasing by 1.5 times per year to serve this need.

Therefore, it is essential that companies provide a better omnichannel experience for their consumers. They can enhance their customers' experiences in various ways—through the usage of predictive analytics, mobile IVR, and via mobile and Web chat.

As the growth and use of mobile devices continues to expand, companies need to predict what customers want and be able to provide a great customer experience across multiple channels. Companies that surpass customer expectations will ultimately increase their customer loyalty in this new world of mobile first.

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Posted November 10, 2014