Mobile is the dominant digital touchpoint in retail, and mobile apps play critical role in it: Consumers who download a retailer’s app are likely to be more loyal, but that doesn’t mean they won’t uninstall the app if it doesn’t meet their expectations!

To help retailers benchmark and prioritize improvements in their apps to meet customer expectations, we evaluated 15 retailer mobile apps in Europe and the US to find the best features, functionality, and user experiences.

These are just a few of the best practices that we suggest for improving retail mobile app experiences:

  • Personalize the experience to enhance product relevance between visits. In 2018, 22% of US online adults wanted retailers to do more to offer them personalized experiences, and 29% of UK online adults were willing to let retailers use their personal information to personalize their shopping experience. Why? Done right, personalization makes the customer experience more relevant. In your mobile app, show your customers both relevant home page recommendations and recent search history so they don’t have to start their browsing from scratch.

Find more best practices on search and navigation.

  • Fine-tune product details and content to convert browsers to buyers. The challenge for retailers is to create simple yet enjoyable digital experiences, with multiple sources of information and content, on a screen that’s one-quarter the size of a desktop screen — or less. Savvy retailers have mastered the art of clearly and succinctly fitting this information and content on mobile product detail pages.

Find more best practices on browsing and merchandising.

  • Reduce the effort required of customers during checkout. Effective digital experience design uses visual cues, content and functionality placement, and streamlined workflows to keep customers motivated and on track to complete the task. When customers instead have to trudge through unnecessary steps, abandonment rates soar. Retailers risk sales when they force customers to navigate through unwieldy checkouts, fill out unnecessary form fields, and work around the wrong keyboard (e.g., showing QWERTY keyboards for numeric fields).

Find more best practices on checkout and payments.

  • Quickly connect customers to digital product insights in-store. Customers rely on many digital sources to make purchase decisions from customer ratings and reviews to digital comparison tools. Retailers can provide the same information in-store through their apps in addition to — or in place of — in-store associates. This is a smart move: While just 6% of US online adults consulted a store associate for information about recent clothing, footwear, or accessories purchases, 30% have used their mobile phone to look up product information while shopping in a physical store.

Find more best practices on mobile apps in-store.

If you would like to discuss these issues further, please feel free to set up an inquiry!