December 12, 2018 by Siobhan Climer
How long is 12 minutes? About as long as the first spacewalk, a quarter of a basketball game, and the amount of time the average American can go without checking their phone. A recent study found Americans check their phones 80 times a day, with 10% of those surveyed checking their phones every four minutes. The reality is that people are using their smartphones for EVERYTHING today. Communication, research, social media, entertainment, and retail top the list. With numbers like that, can your businesses afford to ignore the mobile channel?
As you look forward to the new year, are you prepared to implement a mobile strategy for 2019?
Growth Of Mobile Channels
It wasn’t that long ago that desktops and laptops were the primary arbitrators of online business. As recently as the summer of September of 2016, these primarily-stationary devices dominated internet traffic. That changed in October of 2016, when mobile channels crept slightly above desktop numbers. And mobile hasn’t looked back. You can see – via this nifty real-time infographic by Play Mobi – that the numbers of mobile users are growing, literally every second.
Whether its social media, search engines, email, or apps, mobile devices are one of the primary ways customers interact with brands. E-commerce sales grew 16.4% in the first quarter of 2018 alone. Though some industries remain resilient – gas stations and the auto sector top the list – others have been decimated by the change in buying habits. Blockbuster? Taxi services? Kodak? Sears? Each of these businesses lost their edge – and some lost everything – due to the growth of mobile channels. Developing a mobile strategy for 2019 is essential if your business will continue to thrive in the Age of Convenience.
Your Mobile Strategy For 2019
So how do you do it? Creating and implementing a mobile strategy for 2019 isn’t something you can do overnight, especially if you have not previously invested in multichannel. But it IS possible.
Step 1: Research
The first step is to create a contact center roadmap. Success in business – and, let’s face it, life – is built on goals. And aligning those goals to your strategy is essential. We wrote an eBook on the subject, so if you want to know more, be sure to read Customers Drive, You Navigate: Your Contact Center Roadmap to Customer Care Success.
As part of your roadmap, you should also perform customer journey mapping. That will give you insight into where within the customer journey mobile could be most strategically implemented. A team like Mindsight can also help you with the core research pieces needed: baseline best practices, resource and budget documentation, technology stack research, and success metric definitions. Plus, we have the expertise with the solutions to ensure you have the right solution for your roadmap.
Once you have a plan in place, you’ll have a better sense of where your customers are interacting with your brand, how you can support your customers in every stage of their journey, and the various components of your mobile strategy for 2019. But what do you do with those pieces?
Step 2: Prioritize
You won’t be able to do it all at once. Often referred to as the “low-hanging fruit”, figure out which investments will give you the biggest return and start there. By focusing on those initiatives – for example, vetting and implementing omnichannel solutions – you’ll encourage buy-in from the rest of the business and find the momentum to push forward the next item on the agenda.
Step 3: Team Up
Many businesses today employ a partner to provide the expertise around implementation. This frees up your IT department to focus on training, strategy, and integration. This is especially true for SMBs or businesses that do not yet have an implemented mobile strategy. A partner who specializes in the technology behind a mobile strategy and other contact center solutions has the research, best practices, and use cases at their fingertips.
Step 4: Build, Deploy, And Act
Whether you add your mobile touchpoints in house or with a partner, the actual process of defining project management, roadmap milestones, and building and/or deploying your chosen tools is the most important step. Sometimes we get so focused on planning, the action takes a back seat! Take the time to set the goals, define team responsibilities, ensure communication channels are up and running, and time is allocated for your mobile strategy for 2019.
Step 5: Define Viability
When it comes to deploying any solution, it is vital to have minimum viability standards. What is your beta version? No mobile touchpoint is perfect on first deployment. Understanding this component of touchpoint implementation is necessary, as it ensures you know what the release will look like and how your marketing efforts can tie to the reality of your mobile strategy.
Step 6: Test
If you own a smartphone, you know that apps update (it seems) once a week. Your perception isn’t wrong. Developers of mobile contact center touchpoint tools are constantly identifying and fixing bugs, adding new features, and improving functionality. To ensure you are matching the competition – and that your mobile strategy for 2019 doesn’t become your downfall – add regular testing and validation protocols to your mobile strategy.
Step 7: Do It Again
Multichannel. Omnichannel. Channel-less. These aren’t things you do once and forget. Mobile touchpoints are based on technology, and if there is one truism we subscribe to, it’s that technology is always changing. Don’t get left in the dust. While it is important to stop and take stock of your current strategy, and celebrate your successful implementations, those moments are only worth it if you use it as momentum for action.
Has it been 12 minutes yet? You should probably check your phone now.
Like what you read?
Contact us today to discuss a mobile strategy for 2019.
Mindsight, a Chicago IT services provider, is an extension of your team. Our culture is built on transparency and trust, and our team is made up of extraordinary people – the kinds of people you would hire. We have one of the largest expert-level engineering teams delivering the full spectrum of IT services and solutions, from cloud to infrastructure, collaboration to contact center. Our highly-certified engineers and process-oriented excellence have certainly been key to our success. But what really sets us apart is our straightforward and honest approach to every conversation, whether it is for an emerging business or global enterprise. Our customers rely on our thought leadership, responsiveness, and dedication to solving their toughest technology challenges.
About The Author
Siobhan Climer, Science and Technology Writer for Mindsight, writes about technology trends in education, healthcare, and business. She previously taught STEM programs in elementary classrooms and museums, and writes extensively about cybersecurity, disaster recovery, cloud services, backups, data storage, network infrastructure, and the contact center. When she’s not writing tech, she’s writing fantasy, gardening, and exploring the world with her twin two-year old daughters. Find her on twitter @techtalksio.