Sales of mobile devices worldwide overtook traditional computers quite some time ago, but many high street retailers are failing to create useful mobile experiences for the shopper

The greatest potential is to attract customers for future sales in-store and not just to lead them to purchase online. Users are regularly using their devices to research, rate and engage with high street retailers, so these businesses must consider a targeted mobile and social strategy. This is vital as many users now share details of shopping offers and post photographs of their latest ‘bargain’ purchase to their friends and family on social networks

The key here is to make the most of mobile to enhance the customer experience and to develop a relationship encouraging follow up sales. Recent statistics from Vision Critical showed that 40% of social media users purchased a product after sharing or ‘liking’ it on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest. The data also showed that we are not just purchasing online too. Users of Facebook drive the most in-store buying at an equal rate as online buying.

We have seen that many shopping destinations fail to understand the direct business benefits of social media campaigns and these stats clearly show a link between social sharing leading to purchase. The technology to tap into shoppers via their devices is readily available, such as our own platform which brings together retail offers and shoppers via social media channels in an immediate solution to people who already have their smartphones in their hands.

Of course, retailers need to understand how to reward people who share and promote products to others in their social circles and there is some work to be done here. However, there has been an increase in the use of mobile coupons and redemptions by some stores which add extra benefits to users when they tell their friends through social channels.

Keeping the customer and encouraging loyalty hasn’t changed with the increase in technology and word-of-mouth is just as powerful as it always was, but the new word-of-mouth is social sharing, which drives post-purchase engagement. For the retailer it’s now about the reach and data, so we can gather what the modern shopper wants from their favourite stores.

Whilst we may not be directly purchasing from our smartphones, a combined social and mobile strategy is essential to stay ahead in the retail marketplace.