Tuesday, November 02, 2010

What Do Customers Want from a Mobile Retailing Application?

I came across a interesting report today about mobile retail applications.  This report came from the EDI/B2B company, Sterling Commerce.  You may not expect an EDI/B2B company to be conducting research on mobility, but they provide web portals and other solutions that are now accessed by mobile devices.  As a result, it makes sense to conduct research on why customers are accessing portals on mobile devices.

The Sterling Commerce report indicates that product availability is becoming a necessity for impatient shoppers. Nearly two thirds (66 percent) of consumers surveyed considered it important to very important to be able to conveniently determine in-stock availability before visiting a store.  It was significantly more popular than store locators and even the ability to read product reviews while in the store.

This kind of product and inventory information is invaluable to retail companies developing mobile retail solutions.  However, providing this information may be difficult.  It means your inventory and POS systems must all be integrated efficiently to be able to provide this kind of information fast enough to keep a mobile user happy.

Smartsoft Mobile Solutions is one enterprise mobility vendor that is focused on the mobile retailing category, or what they call business to everyone category.

Kevin Benedict, SAP Mentor, SAP Top Contributor, Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst
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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.