Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Facebook and Mobile Retailing Applications

For about a month my Facebook wall was invaded by friends involved in raising money for their schools.  It seems Kohls' retail stores were running a program that would award a few schools with $500,000 each toward projects if their schools were able to get the most people to visit Kohl's website and "check in."

I most often browse Facebook from my iPhone or iPad.  By simply clicking on the Facebook link I would be sent to Kohl's website and encouraged to browse.  The browsing, however, was for a good cause.  The students, parents, families and friends all encouraged their networks of contacts to visit Kohls website and browse.  Although it got kind of old after receiving the 133rd Facebook message reminding me to visit Kohl's website to benefit the school, it was effective in getting thousands to visit.  I found the approach and program interesting. 

There are an amazing variety of mobile retailing programs and solutions.  Coupons, loyalty programs, 2D QR barcodes solutions, in store barcode scanning applications, location based services, etc.  The internet is fast approaching the point where people will access the internet more from their smartphones than from desktops and laptops.  Smartphones will soon be our means of payment.  They will be our navigation systems.  Our product catalogs and our style guides.

The most intriguing mobile retailing applications will benefit both the buyer and seller by closely matching our preferences and styles with available inventories, attractive prices and locations near us.

For more information on mobile retailing applications read Ben Lee's latest blog article, Best Practices: Defining Mobile ROI in Retailing.

Kevin Benedict, SAP Mentor, SAP Top Contributor, Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst
Phone +1 208-991-4410
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Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.