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Grow Your Business Technology

4 Ways to Make Mobile Work for Your Customers

4 Ways to Make Mobile Work for Your Customers
Credit: Peshkova/Shutterstock

The fact that your business needs a mobile presence is by no means news. Brands today know that being accessible to the increasing number of smartphones and tablet users is a must — now, the goal is to provide a top-notch user experience.

"Mobile is opening the door for designing new experiences that complement a brand's physical presence," Young Pham, chief strategy officer at design and strategy agency Comrade, said in a statement. "The context of when, where and what a customer is doing during their day allows companies to enhance a person's interaction and customize device-specific experiences."

Comrade recently conducted a survey of 225 mobile users to delve further into the relationship between consumers and their devices. Based on the results, the company predicted that brands will need to meet the following mobile experience expectations in 2015. [5 Trends That Are Shaping Mobile Commerce]

Mobile apps and mobile Web. Got a mobile app but not a mobile-friendly website, or vice versa? You might want to put your energy into leveling out your mobile presence. Consumers are about equally split when it comes to their preference of app versus browser: The percentage of users who prefer their mobile browser when completing a task (28 percent) is only slightly higher than the 23 percent that prefer to use an app. Both app and Web designs are critical for businesses in the mobile space, so it pays to do them right.

CRM through mobile marketing. Mobile marketing isn't just for acquisition anymore. Today, it's about boosting loyalty by using mobile for customer relationship management (CRM). According to Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers's 2013 Annual Internet Trends Report, consumers always have their mobile device on them and check it more than 150 times a day. Businesses can communicate with their existing customers through alert notifications, in-app, email and mobile Web. But don't overdo it — the Comrade study said that key to maintaining an effective relationship is doing so in a complementary way, giving users what they need when they need it.

Combating fraud through mobile. This past year has seen a lot of high-profile corporate data breaches, and 2015 will likely see some as well. Mobile users want to safeguard themselves against fraud, and 56 percent are willing to deal with a slightly more complex user experience if it means greater protection, according to Comrade. Businesses can provide an intuitive, high-quality mobile experience that also protects against fraud by offering to validate transactions, set fraud controls and generate unique payment IDs through the user's mobile device.

Complement, not copy. E-commerce providers must leverage mobile to complement the user experience, rather than provide a replica of what users get through a Web browser. Comrade's survey found that nearly 4 in 10 mobile users are most likely to use their mobile phone for shopping, so businesses need to ensure that those customers are getting something unique from their mobile interaction.

Nicole Fallon

Nicole Fallon received her Bachelor's degree in Media, Culture and Communication from New York University. She began freelancing for Business News Daily in 2010 and joined the team as a staff writer three years later. She currently serves as the assistant editor. Reach her by email, or follow her on Twitter.