Since its introduction, mobile commerce or m-commerce app development has been a profitable business avenue. The number of mobile commerce users is constantly growing thanks to the pandemic and the number of people being able to afford mobile internet services is increasing with each passing day. According to the statistics by OuterBox, 79% of the total smartphone users in the United States have bought products online using their smartphones. This means, in the United States alone, 230 million smartphone users, 182 million users purchase using their smartphones. These numbers are proof enough to determine the credibility and acceptance of m-commerce app development in this day and age.
Ever heard about Progressive Web Apps? Well, Progressive Web Apps are websites that look and feel like mobile applications. If you already have an existing e-commerce website and are getting recommendations to proceed with a PWA development, then it is important to keep in mind the following points before making any decisions. If you have determined that m-commerce app development is your idea of boosting your retail business, then there are a few features that you must think about to make your business stand out.
What is M-Commerce?
M-Commerce is another name of mobile commerce and is often called m-commerce. Mobile commerce shows commercial transactions that are performed on a mobile device. It is not really a new trend or technology but it is a natural progression of technology as users are spending more time on mobile devices instead of computers and laptops.
Different Types of Mobile Commerce
Typically, mobile commerce is divided into three segments:
a) Mobile Shopping:
Mobile Shopping is all about allowing a better shopping experience on mobile devices. Whether it is shopping from a Shopify store or subscription to Amazon Prime on mobile, it is a part of m-commerce.
b) Mobile Banking:
We are way past that age where the shoppers needed to stand in a queue at banks or ATM’s for their deposits or withdrawals. Today most banks provide mobile phone banking around the world, where users can pay bills, transfer money, and transactions with a few clicks.
c) Digital Payments:
QR code, NFC, and improving mobile security has made it possible for users to replace cash with digital payments. Apple Pay and Google Pay are widely used in the western world, while apps like Paytm and PhonePe dominate digital payments in India.
Conventional approaches to connect with users like social media platforms, television advertisements etc are in use but m-commerce applications are different. First, let us understand the difference between m-commerce and e-commerce.
Difference between E-commerce and M-commerce?
Let us understand how m-commerce differs from traditional e-commerce.
1. M-Commerce is always accessible:
E-commerce is an electronic commerce and m-commerce is about mobile commerce and m-commerce app development. The names are self-explanatory that e-commerce means the activities taking place using desktops, computers, laptops and web browsers. Whereas, m-commerce refers to activities that can take place using phones and tablets.
Instead of using laptops and desktops, users find it easier to use their mobile devices. This is the main reason why m-commerce is getting widely popular in today’s world because smartphones are actually smart and accessible for most users. Even though e-commerce brings traffic, it is still not as convenient when compared to mobile phones. So, m-commerce is a clear winner here.
2. M-Commerce is focused on users:
A smartphone is a better option to understand the preferences and interests of the users when compared to desktops/laptops. By leveraging Artificial Intelligence, it is easy to get an in-depth understanding of users and mobile phones. This will make it easier to customize promotions and recommend solutions that the user is asking for. As the user starts getting the right information, he will stay for a long time.
3. M-Commerce interacts every time:
With the help of beacon technology, a mobile app can inform users to visit the store as soon as he/she passes near a shop. It allows brands to send m-commerce push notifications to the users. Time-specific and location-specific content provide enhanced user engagement. Similarly, e-commerce comes with certain limitations, like they cannot reach the user when required.
This allows the shift from a conventional to a modern approach with the introduction of m-commerce. It is safe to say that m-commerce is definitely revolutionizing the shopping experience for all users.
Ultimate Guide to Build an M-commerce Website:
1. Go with better Cryptography –
It is always confirmed that single broken cryptography can be the biggest reason for a data breach in application security. To secure the application from a further data breach, it is important that at the time of development, each and every app development algorithm is designed to keep third parties and other concerned parties away from the app.
2. Binary Protection –
For the stable development of an m-commerce app, binary protection must be considered. On the other hand, you must ensure that advanced technologies are susceptible to hackers. They are always on the lookout for the smallest error on your part to steal your data. So, binary protection is perfect for your peace of mind.
3. Authentication –
One time authentication of user information is simply not enough to secure their data from data breaches and thefts. To secure this data, it is important to redo the authentication process again when the user is making changes to his or her profile. Moreover, monetary transactions or personal data changes need authentication too. Make sure you are not losing the grip on them. But, when handling the authentication process, make sure that you are not overdoing it. It is important to strike a balance between what should be asked and what can offend users.
4. Patches –
App security is a never-ending process even if you follow the mobile app launch checklist. So, security patches should be done from time to time. Moreover, make sure you are updating security patches as per the requirements to secure the m-commerce from future problems and threats.
5. Code Review –
Each and every m-commerce application element must be tested thoroughly. When it comes to code reviews, make sure that the review process is done by experienced professionals. It is better if the experts analyze and figure out the issues if any. The experts can easily figure out the vulnerabilities of code like authentications, authorization, cryptography, database access and more. Follow a prominent mobile application performance testing guide to make your app robust and error-free.
6. Injecting Attacks –
Account duplication on the same device can also create troubles for the mobile app. Moreover, it is essential not to completely trust inputs shared by users. To secure that, it is important to filter the user data and inputs shared by them. Hence, you can simply use different levels of cross authentication and filtration. This is the best way to develop a secure m-commerce application or any type of application.
Important Features of M-Commerce Application Development:
Now, let us understand the features that need to be added to an m-commerce application.
1. Personalization –
Mobile users love personalization in their m-commerce applications. Once they download the app, provide them with different social media integration sign-up options for a smooth app onboarding process. It is possible to gain their usage information even if they are signing up from other social media platforms. As you gain insights like gender, location, preference etc, you can provide them with a custom experience. To do so, you can provide them with suggestions and recommendations as well. It will lift the user experience and brand loyalty.
2. Bug elimination –
Even a single error or crash in the application can impact user experience and force them to switch to your rival app. So, for an enhanced experience, make sure your app is error and bug-free. It is important to see that this feature is executed properly. As you have spent a lot of time, money and effort, make sure you are providing the best m-commerce experience to the users.
3. Offer Discount –
Who doesn’t love discounts? Introduce discounts to the users on the very first step of the app. You can later send push notifications regarding further discounts and deals on their favorite products or services using AI. This strategy is bound to work and increase your sales too.
4. Product Descriptions –
The product description is more important than the credit it gets. Users often read the description first or search about it before actually making a purchase. Now, as you are selling products using m-commerce apps, make sure you are not using real estate to add too much information. It is best to remove excessive information and use bullet points for better clarity.
5. Product Images –
Images are the first thing that grabs a user’s attention. So, make sure that you display product images in an aesthetically pleasing way. It is best to include large and clear product images. Blurred images will turn off the users and let them question the quality of the product. As it is not possible to touch or check the quality, it is best to provide a zoom-in feature in the image.
6. Customer Service –
Users always face an issue while making a purchase and it is your responsibility to solve them. Do not force them to leave your site to get these answers. Have a well-trained customer service team to resolve these customer issues. You can do this by offering live chat, chatbots or calls.
7. Mode of Payment –
By saving the details of the users and other transactional information, you can provide them with an easy and quick payment gateway. As it is an m-commerce app, small buttons and other parameters could be quite frustrating. So, for a smooth and easy experience, make sure you are securely saving their payment information and allowing them to complete the purchase with multiple payment options.
8. Order Tracking –
Once the order is processed, allow the users to track their delivery too as it reduces their anxiety. Provide them with different types of messages or mails to remind them that you are also updating and tracking the delivery status. Apart from these, you can also include features like barcode scanning, loyalty programs, product rating and reviews, membership options, wishlist etc.
The features mentioned above are very important to offer a good m-commerce app experience. Though, if you want to achieve success using m-commerce app development, you need to leverage the data to determine the features lacking in your app. Add those features in an update and repeat the same at fixed intervals. This can be done in a month, a quarter, or every six months. Do you have an m-commerce app development requirement? Then get in touch with Nimblechapps today to get a free quote.
Keval Padia is the founder & CEO of Nimblechapps, a fast-growing mobile app development company. The current innovation and updates of the field lures him to express his views and thoughts on certain topics.