Mobile application developmentCustomer satisfaction and retention is the underlying goal of most businesses.  A happy customer that buys repeatedly from you and perhaps even acts as a reference or ambassador on your behalf is invaluable.  How do you effectively monitor or stimulate this behavior?

While there are a number of traditional methods to reward and retain customers, new technology is providing a number of innovative formats.  Mobile applications and even web compliant websites can be a powerful way of monitoring and rewarding loyal customers.  Imagine pushing highly targeted specials or promotions to regional customers based on their location or buying patterns?  Companies right here in Buffalo are embracing new technology as effective branding and marketing tools.

This trend is influenced by the escalating statistics of smartphone users who are the target of mobile marketing. Digital advertising is projected to reach the $1.1 billion mark by the end of the year and over $2.5 billion by 2014. This is an opportunity for businesses to reach a much more diverse demographic audience and influence their purchasing decisions, all happening in real time.

According to Gartner, by the end of 2013, 12.5% of all ecommerce transactions will be undertaken from mobile devices and context-aware data based on location or personal user profiles will be used to validate 90% of them.

William Clark, a research vice president at the firm, said: “Enterprises that want to remain competitive in electronic commerce over the next five years should begin exploring context-aware applications by year-end 2011 for both fraud detection and later on for customer acquisition and retention activities afforded by personalized and customized marketing and advertising information.”

For both small and large businesses the challenge is implementing an effective strategy to compete in this mobile space.  Since many small businesses rely on regional customers, GPS and other social networking tools are available to help identify and reach prospects.  Voice of the customer (VOC) is a powerful vehicle to gain valuable feedback on your products and services which can directly lead to quality improvements and enhanced features.  These types of customer satisfaction surveys and suggestion features can all be deployed through a custom mobile application.  These are immediate ways to capture and analyze essential information.  More importantly this data can be harnessed to better serve and reward customers.

According to the JiWire Mobile Audience Insight Report, location-based ads and marketing are soaring, and it’s also the key factor that’s compelling people to shop online with their mobile phones. This is why many large companies are jumping onboard to take advantage of the trend.  Facebook, for example is a recent supporter of location-based mobile marketing. However, a recent Microsoft survey sees that a part of the location-based trend is an opening to several forms of private data exploitation such as identity theft.

Early adopters of mobile technology are seeing immediate results.  Furthermore, they are providing convenient methods for customers and prospects to express themselves and stay connected.  As companies discover innovative uses of mobile technology, they can help differentiate their services, reinforce corporate culture, and build long-term customer loyalty.