Mobile Shopping

How to Build a Stronger Mobile Purchasing Funnel

What was once a company-led mobile purchasing funnel is now a cartoonistic game of cat and mouse. As consumers weave throughout the mobile web, evading the notoriously simple ‘purchasing funnel’, marketers are forced to race just to stay on their heels. This shift away the linear path-to-purchase can confuse even the top mobile marketers. It’s become a high-speed chase regarding mobile shopping cart abandonment, and ironically, Google DoubleClick survey finds speed to be the primary factor.

Based on over 10,000 mobile web domains, this survey found that the average amount of time it took for a mobile web page to load was roughly the same amount it takes to sing the entire alphabet song. In the past, consumers waited for brands to lead them through the purchasing funnel, but this is no longer the case. An array of options create a variety of distractions for today’s mobile shopper, and challenges marketers to be more inventive in keeping consumers engaged. The purchasing funnel is completely customer-led, weaving throughout various mobile websites, and intentions change by the minute. Google’s summarised findings are below:

  • Average load times for mobile web pages on 3G are 19 seconds.
  • 77% of mobile sites took longer than 10 seconds to load on 3G networks.
  • 53% of mobile website visits are abandoned when the page takes longer than 3 seconds to load.
  • Mobile websites that loaded in 5 seconds (compared to 19 second-average) saw a 25% higher ad viewability, 35% lower bounce rates, and 70% longer average sessions.
  • Mobile sites that loaded within 5 seconds earned up to 2x more mobile ad revenue (compared to sites that took 19 seconds)

Google compares average load times to going up 60 floors in one of the world’s fastest elevators faster than you can load a single mobile web page. Where consumer electronics segments see higher cart abandonment rates, tech-related sites see a higher-than-average rate of repeat customers. Brands must adjust their strategy using first and third-party data to understand the motivators of their industry, whether it be customer affinity, price sensitivity, browsing propensity, or customisation options.

Mobile marketing tactics can stall shopping cart abandonment

In a recent IAB/Winterberry Group study, 57.1% of marketers said cross-channel measurement and attribution are their primary focuses this year. Tactics such as programmatic ad buying, predictive modeling, and general audience analytics also saw sharp increases compared to previous years.

This study encourages marketers to explore the use of cross-channel tactics, on- and offline efforts that correlate with mobile-friendly pages, and take a stronger ‘hands-on’ approach with what their shoppers see. Start first by allocating the mobile web traffic to your highest performing calls to action. Sending the majority of traffic to the strongest selling experiences helps A/B testing in the long run, which is where brands can drive high and low-ticket items and leverage social proof. Where desktop shoppers would multi-task between screens and inevitably return to the tab to finish the purchase, mobile shoppers consistently race time to perform tasks in between a slew of texts, notifications, and exterior distractions. Marketers who can navigate the cross-channel opportunities will have a better chance at minimising distractions, and providing better personalised offers.

Personalise to build better in-store and online shopping experiences

Channeling data into powerfully personalised experiences is just as important as mobile web page loading speeds. Not only does personalisation build better experiences, it also drives both high and low ticket items. Brands should also be aware of the efficacy of social proof, and its ability to do the convincing for them. If a mobile shopper views a specific item more than once, we can infer they already know exactly what they want. By showing this specific consumer how many other people have bought the item, the social proof creates a fear of missing out.

Brands that show users unrelated products will send them away from the mobile purchasing funnel, while those that pair down home pages to what’s relevant to their search will see higher return rates. Aside from applying the data, brands that accept mobile payments in-store, real-time inventory checks across locations, and customer shopping profiles will reduce churn – pulling revenue from the stores that ignore mobile-related and forward-thinking experiences.

Mobile optimisation narrows the mobile purchasing funnel

In addition to a speedy mobile website, brands must track each aspect of their mobile purchasing funnel to maintain pace. Mobile-first indexing is around the corner. Brands who want to reduce churn can’t afford to overlook their mobile purchasing funnel. Greater mobile optimisation makes that funnel narrower. Button sizes should be easy to tap, while marketers should break up walls of text into shorter paragraphs. Similarly, aligning images center and aligning text vertical makes mobile shopping simpler. With these tactics in place (and in a constant state of refinement), brands shouldn’t struggle as often with shopping cart abandonment.. or the mobile purchasing funnel.


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