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FieldworkHave you gone mobile?  Chances are you have.  Smart phones, e-readers, and personal tablets are here to stay.  But I’m sure that’s old news to you.  You may even be reading this on your portable device right now.  But despite your familiarity with using and consuming information with your device, have you taken time to consider this phenomenon from a provider perspective?

Believe it or not, mobile users on average consume more media on their devices than they spend watching television, using their PC, or accessing any other information source (see statistics here). If you haven’t caught up with this trend, now is the time!

Research shows that greater than 1 in 5 consumers use their tablets or mobile devices on a daily basis for shopping. And while 69% of those buyers do so from the comfort of home, 27% shop while at work, and 31% do it while present in the actual store!

So why would someone go on their smart phone when already physically in the store?  Are we really that addicted to our devices?  Well, perhaps, but maybe not for what you may think. Smart consumers utilize their devices to make informed purchase decisions and receive the best value for their money. Buyers not only compare prices, look for promotions, and read reviews, but they also utilize data previously closed to external shoppers such as inventory levels and specific shipping information.

To make sure your business can meet the demands of this shift in consumption, optimize all of your platforms for the mobile user experience.

Create a responsive web page that will expand and collapse as a tablet user zooms in and out.  If you have a busy home page, forward your users to an alternate mobile site or landing page with simpler formatting.

Create buttons and touch features to facilitate an easy mobile user interface.  Don’t require a lot of data entry if you can help it – a lot of users steer away from heavy typing on their tiny phone keyboards.  If possible, pre-populate return user information for easy subsequent submissions.