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The future of sales promotion is targeted content delivered by flawless responsive design

Responsive Web Design

Don't stay plugged into the past - the future is mobile

Every day we marketeers see the latest report or finding telling us that consumers are increasingly web browsing, social-media interacting and above all purchasing on their mobile phones or tablets. We, as a species, are at the point of no return where the physical limitations of desks and cables, let alone actually visiting a bricks and mortar high street retailer, are rapidly becoming, if not obsolete, certainly far from a necessity.

Here are just a few articles validating Mashable's assertion that 2013 is the year of Responsive Design:

If you're already concerned that you're a bit late joining the responsive design party, data is now starting to emerge which suggests that your content also needs to be tailored to the type of device consumers are using. One standout stat is that 63% of tablet users will make a purchase online compared with only 39% of mobile users. Whilst the findings of this particular report might be a little bit woolly, it does lead to the obvious conclusion that not only is the depth and breadth of your content extremely important, but increasingly we need to present content that is relevant to the typical behaviour on that device.

Targeted content

There may not be enough conclusive data to provide a clear indication of how best to treat a smartphone user differently from a tablet user. As smartphones are usually more portable and can surf beyond the reach of wi-fi signals alone they are really the browse everywhere device. Tablets tend to be wi-fi only (of course, not exclusively) and so surfing is by its nature going to be within the home - within easy reach of wallets, comfort and refreshment, or in hotels, restaurants or other public places where you can sit down and whip out your tablet. Therefore tablet users, with the benefit of better usability are bound to be more comfortable with doing the so-called kick-back activities e.g. watching a video or making a purchase. Whereas the smaller smartphone canvas / interface is perhaps more fiddly for entering payment details and passwords (and potentially on a data limit) thus lending themselves better to simple, easily digested information, special offers and, some reports have suggested, even adverts driving people into their nearby bricks and mortar retailer - whatever next?

From a sales promotion point of view, marketeers need to allow for the possibility that mobile users could literally buy a product after seeing a sales promotion message in-store and wish to engage in the promotion there and then. This eventuality and the above considerations prompts us to recommend the following considerations for your targeted mobile content:

  • The ultimate smart move to make with a smartphone user is to (non-invasively) target your message based on their current location. If you request the user's permission to reveal their location at the outset and can then go on to tell them that their nearest store is only a block away, present this phone to get an extra 10% off today only etc then that's going to be pretty compelling.
  • Try and simplify promotion entry methods for smartphone users - avoid them having to key in too much information. Utilise fields that can be autofilled by clever browsers.
  • Recognise that a mobile user is not (easily) going to be able to print off a pdf voucher or proof of entitlement for presentation to a 3rd party. Consider a redemption mechanic which stays on the phone, e.g. a barcode, or an alternative secure method.*
  • Avoid lengthy videos or complicated animation based games (particularly Flash which is not compatible with IOS) or at least give smartphone users the option to proceed at their discretion.
  • Consider a custom app which can provide much of the functionality off-line yet still give that eye-popping impact of a well thought out game or animation.
  • Recognise that any engagement with your brand is welcome and every effort should be made to sustain their interest. If your initial sales promotion message prompted them to visit your site, what else can you tell them? Would a complimentary offer or a few well chosen facts that could cement a purchase decision help sweeten the deal?

Responsive Design

Thinking about delivering targeted content is all rather redundant if your website shows the same site to everyone regardless of their device. Any developer worth their salt will tell you that they can build in responsive design to your existing site, but:

  • It won't come cheap
  • You'll be charged per device (manufacturer and / or OS)
  • The scope of response will always be limited to known devices at the time of development

Our recommended solution is a platform which is not only future-proof in terms of catering for any and all devices, but it will also provide the following killer benefits for a modest monthly fee:

  • Ultra-fast to deploy saving up to 90% on development time
  • Built-in Content Management System allowing multiple users to keep the site current and relevant
  • Single url for all devices - a solution Google will reward you for in your SEO efforts
  • Ability to handle complex structure data
  • Bootstrap compatible for easy migration from services like Wordpress
  • Flexible, unlimited hosting included

If you want to find out more about the ultimate responsive design solution, why not get in touch?

* We can help with this too!

Posted by Adam Miller at 19:00
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