Regardless of category, a vital app transcends basic functionality and user experience. It boils down to what makes an app something that a user doesn’t want to — or can’t — live without everyday. In our Designing for Place series, we define what it means to be a vital app, while also providing a formula that you can measure your app’s usage to understand if what features you consider to be vital in your app aligns with what your users are actually doing.
These findings can be applied to online retailer apps like Gilt, Wayfair, Zappos and Overstock.com to name a few. We’ll walk through some next-generation ideas we have for Internet Retailer apps, using data like location and context to help deploy appticipation. As a result, etail apps will be able to better personify their users, serve the right experience to the right user at the right time, and increase overall app engagement.
Internet Retailer Apps Today
The home screen of many Internet retailer apps allows users to select a city to find local offers that can be purchased right from the app. Depending on the type of Internet Retailer app, some menus might offer categories of sales by the type of room the user is shopping for, others offer sales categorized by gender or destination.
Regardless of the type of Internet Retailer app, most of them offer a section at the bottom of each item that shows users similar items they might love and want to purchase. Some apps even offer a separate wishlist section that enables the user to add items they wish to have but are not ready to purchase yet.
Internet Retailer Apps With Appticipation
We can’t help ourselves when it comes to imagining what the next generation of Internet Retailer apps look like with appticipation.
1. Automate Local Offers
Automatically know what city the user is located in so they do not have to manually select the city from the homescreen. The app can automatically populate the screen with local offers that can be easily purchased in-app. Encorporate geofencing so that offers are populated on the home screen as a user comes into vicinity of the location.
Knowing where a user is located also allows the app to offer opportunistic sales based on location and weather. If the app knows the user is in California, it will not offer sales for winter boots.
2. Shopping Mode
In order to increase engagement and keep users shopping in the app, Internet Retailers can use geofencing to geo-conquest competitor brick-and-mortar locations. The app can know a user walks into a store and can automatically prompt the home screen to change to “Shopping Mode”. “Shopping Mode” includes a “Find It Cheaper!” button that automatically pre-load the app’s product scanner and prompts users to check the app for price comparisons. The App can also prompt customers to re-visit their abandoned carts, encourage browsing, or deliver exclusive deals on slow-moving inventory while customers are in the shopping mindset.
3. Opportunistic Sales Based on Past Location Behavior
The app knows the content each customer consumes and the customers’ online purchase history. With location history and Personas, Skyhook can complete the customer view by knowing the customers’ demographics and offline shopping behavior and lifestyle.
Skyhook’s Personas anonymously categorize customers based on real-world behavior. These Personas allow you to offer tailored content and deals that increase conversions--even those with limited purchase history.
For example, an Internet Retailer app knows a user has been to Nordstrom recently and suggests similar items on sale: “We noticed you like to shop at Nordstrom, we have some items on sale that might interest you.” Knowing location behavior would allow the app to personalize product recommendations. The app can even create a new feed of sales based on stores you like to shop in and items you have previously purchased.
The Bottom Line:
With appticipation, Internet Retailer apps can add context to their app to anticipate what their users are looking for and make their lives easier. These location-based features would also make their app more vital to their users’ shopping experience.