Upsetting the Apple Cart - Medallion Retail
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Strategy, Creativity, Shopper Moments, Social Media Integration, Brand Building

Upsetting the Apple Cart

POSTED ON: 01/07/16 Retail Apps

It hurts to get dumped. You think everything is going great. You’re communicating, paying attention, anticipating needs, proffering little gifts for no reason. Then “click!” You’ve been deleted.

And this time, it is you. Well, it’s your app. Shoppers are extremely choosy about which retail apps will be granted precious real estate on their smartphones.

Native retail apps must offer real value, not empty declarations of affection. Consumers are not going to become brand advocates just because they try an app. They’re simply giving you a chance. But if the infatuation doesn’t quickly bloom into true love, it’s over.

Historically, it’s been difficult to get shoppers to commit to a retail app. However, marketers are realizing that an app can be more than a PR tool. When used right, high-functioning apps serve as an extension of the brick-and-mortar store. They offer more intuitive, interactive browsing and more omnichannel functions than the mobile web can, and therefore have the potential to deliver the best possible experience for mobile shoppers.

According to a report by Sensor Tower, an app marketing intelligence firm, the number of iOS shopping app downloads during Black Friday week increased by 17 percent, to 5.82 million, over the same timeframe last year. That’s up significantly from last year’s growth rate of just two percent for that week.

The shopper is opening her heart to retail apps. So these apps better deliver. That means an attractive interface and intuitive user experience. That means great features and content that is relevant, timely and motivational. That means an experience that feels personalized. Most importantly, great retail apps will enhance and extend the in-store experience.

Who’s doing retail apps well?  Below are my picks for the best of 2015; take a look and be inspired.

IKEA

Futuristic, entertaining and always inspiring, this brand’s augmented reality app is like nothing seen before.

Urban Outfitters

Called Urban On, this app interacts with shoppers as they browse.  It offers special deals in real time, and integrates social media so shopper can share the experience – and brand messaging.

Wal-Mart

This old-school retailer is getting modern digital technology right. The app has a simple, functional interface, and allows cost-sensitive shoppers to get the very best price on items.

Best Buy

A great execution of IFTTT (If This Then That) functionality makes this app a standout. Users are able to construct a personalized in-store experience that is truly interactive.

Walgreens

Well-known and highly rated, this app used 3D view maps to drive shoppers to relevant shelves. Contextual discount enhance the experience (and the sales numbers).

Starbucks

This brand has mastered red cup scandals and the retail mobile app. It powers an efficient and highly personalized experience, from a tailored loyalty program to in-store perks (so to speak) to pre-order options that truly delight shoppers.

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