What's Your Mobile Mojo?

by Jeannie Walters

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mobile for the masses

Mobile is the new black.

We are learning that more customers (your customers) are using mobile than ever before. Mobile apps help us verify we’re getting the best deal, finding the best option, and otherwise enhancing (and controlling) the experience with brands.

So what is your strategy around mobile?

When I ask this question, typically I hear these answers:

“We are creating an app! It’s really cool.”

“We want to create an app. But we don’t know what it would do.”

“Our site isn’t very mobile-friendly.”

Do you see what’s missing?

Strategy. Not technology. Not desire. Simple strategy. Customer experience strategy, to be exact.

Before jumping into the mobile morass, I propose asking the following questions:

1. What do our customers do with our products? What can we help them do via mobile devices?

For example, Redbox offers customers a way to reserve and rent a movie from their mobile device.

2. What are most of our web site visitors looking for? What should we serve up via mobile immediately?

Many of us, myself included, turn to our mobile devices when we have that thought – I need a manicure, I need an oil change, I need a library book – and find ourself with 3 minutes and our phone. Using a mobile web browser, we search and find our preferred vendor site, simply because we want the phone number. And guess what? It’s not on the freaking home page! You know what that means? We have to search in the itty-bitty navigation for “Contact Us” or something. Please, for the love of all that is holy in customer experience, put your phone number in regular font on your home page if you are any type of business that requires customers to call you for appointments!

3. Why do we need an app?

Yes, there is probably an app for that. But we may not need it. Take care to create an app that customers will appreciate. My recent favorite was the Disneyland line wait time app we used on our recent trip there. Brilliant!

4. How will this experience connect with our web and offline experiences?

I recently evaluated the mobile experience of an established technology product. It worked fine. The only problem was that the Android, iPhone and iPad apps all worked slightly differently. They didn’t mirror the online experience in ways they should have – like using the same icons. When you send 4 different teams out to design 4 different apps, consistency is hard to achieve.

Mobile is here to stay, and with good reason. Using a creative mobile experience can absolutely enhance your customers’ experiences. Just think first, develop second.

What apps do you love?

Photo credit: Kabra Vaibhav via Creative Commons license

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Jeannie Walters

Jeannie Walters is the CEO/Founder of Experience Investigators, a global Customer Experience consulting firm. She has 20 years of experience helping companies improve loyalty and retention, employee engagement, and overall customer experience. Jeannie is a Certified Customer Experience Professional (CCXP,) a charter member of the Customer Experience Professionals Association (CXPA,) a Professional Member of the National Speakers Association, LinkedIn Learning instructor, TEDx speaker, and President-Elect of the National Speakers Association Illinois chapter. Learn more here.

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