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Top 10 mobile commerce apps of Q1By Rimma Kats
These days brands and retailers are constantly rolling out mobile applications to keep up with tech-savvy consumers. However, only a slight few have really stepped up their game and incorporated the key features needed to have users coming back.
In the past few months, many marketers rolled out mobile apps for a variety of platforms including iOS, Android and Windows Phone. Mobile apps are a great way for marketers to drive sales for their products and create an ongoing relationship with consumers.
Here are the top 10 mobile commerce apps of the first-quarter, in alphabetical order. The campaigns were judged on creative, form of engagement and execution. Results for the apps were not provided.
Baked by Melissa
Baked by Melissa decided to roll out an iPad application instead of going the iPhone app route.
The company realized that Apple’s iPad provided a larger canvas and consumers were able to customize their own cupcake creations via the device’s larger screen.
Through the iPad app consumers are also able to post their cupcake to the Baked by Melissa public gallery, share it on Facebook with friends and family and buy the cupcakes for orders of 300 or more.
What is great about the app is that it is interactive. Not only can users order their favorite cupcakes, but they can customize them and play around with different flavors and icings.
Making a mobile app fun is a good way to have users coming back to the app.
Citi is one of the few financial institutions in the mobile space that is always thinking ahead of the curve.
Earlier this year, the company expanded its mobile repertoire with a Kindle Fire application that lets consumers track, analyze and plan their finances.
Citi was one of the first financial institutions to roll out an app specifically for Amazon’s tablet.
Via the app, consumers can access their finances, analyze personal spending habits, customizable charts of payee spending and compare personal spending habits with general consumer data, filtering by location, age group, income bracket and purchase category.
Citi is smart to make sure that its presence is known on almost any device in the mobile space.
It is always important for companies to make sure that their customers are able to reach them no matter what device they are carrying.
When it comes to mobile ordering, Domino’s is leading the pack.
In the first-quarter of 2012, Domino’s not only rolled out a mobile app for Android devices, but for Windows Phone 7 as well.
Pizza lovers can browse the company’s menu items and view any ongoing deals.
Two weeks after its Windows Phone 7 launch, Domino’s rolled out its Android app that also lets consumers customize and order their favorite pies.
Currently, Domino’s now offers its mobile ordering app to more than 80 percent of smartphones.
As of March, Domino’s has exceeded 140,000 downloads for its Android mobile ordering app.
Many marketers are taking a tablet-first approach now when it comes to their mobile strategies. Home Depot is no exception.
Earlier this month, Home Depot created a digital style guide for do-it-yourself home remodelers and introduced the
Home Depot Style Guide Spring 2012 app designed specifically for Pad devices.
The app showcases interactive content which lets users view top design trends.
Through the app users can browse a series of articles that were created from scratch for the app.
When marketers create apps specifically for tablets, it shows that they are taking advantage of the device’s larger real estate.
An app such as this lets consumers accomplish a lot more tasks then if Home Depot rolled out the same app for a smaller screen.
Similar to Home Depot, Lowe’s took a tablet-first approach for its Creative Ideas magazine iPad app.
Through the mobile app, consumers are able to browse exclusive content and products that are found at the retailer in-store and online locations.
Consumers can also learn how to use the products via the app.
Over the past few months, Rite Aid has been steadily building up its mobile presence.
It’s new mobile app strategy centers around loyalty.
The company decided to finally develop a mobile app after it saw a vast amount of consumers accessing its mobile site.
Rite Aid aimed to make the app easy to use and incorporated a one-click prescription refill function that lets users refill a prescription by using a smartphone’s camera to snap a picture of the barcode on the prescription bottle.
It is always important to keep users top of mind when developing a mobile app.
If a mobile app is difficult or challenging to use, consumers are less inclined to use it again.
Seamless has attracted a huge following since it made its debut in the mobile space.
Seamless already had an iPhone and Android application and earlier this year the company built on its mobile repertoire by debuting an iPad app.
Although the iPad app is the first Seamless tablet app, the company is also looking to develop for other tablet platforms in the near future.
The app is similar to the company’s Web site and lets consumers order their favorite food from nearby restaurants.
Additionally, consumers can then change their tips or add items to get their order as close as possible to the delivery minimum. This is a feature that Seamless integrated from its Web site to the iPad app as a way to make mobile ordering more similar to the desktop experience.
By seeing what worked on its Web site, Seamless was able to integrate the same functionality on its tablet app to make sure users are getting the best experience possible.
Ticketmaster finally rolled out an iPhone application this year after much consumer demand.
The mobile app is a great way for on-the-go consumers to browse and search for concerts and games in their area.
The app takes advantage of the iPhone’s device capabilities and sends out mobile alerts to consumers about current sales and last-minute tickets for their favorite events.
The app also integrates social media. Users can share their plans with friends and family through social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and foursquare.
By incorporating social, Ticketmaster is not only letting users spread the word out about the app, but also ramping up its multichannel strategy.
T.G.I. Friday’s has been increasing its mobile presence by implementing QR codes on its menus earlier this year and now the company aims to reach a broader audience through its new mobile app.
The iPhone app lets consumers place an order and pay their bill.
What is great about the app is the ability for consumers to pay their bills.
The mobile payments space is growing and consumers are becoming increasingly educated on using their mobile devices to pay for goods and services.
Many companies roll out a mobile app and its stays the same for many years.
However, Urbanspoon is the exception. Earlier this month the company redesigned its iPhone application that now lets diners discover restaurants based on the elements most important to them.
The new app provides a comprehensive view of the restaurant experience based on percentage of likes, expert content and visual elements, including an emphasis on user photos.
It is always important to listen to consumers and make sure that they are satisfied with the application.
If they are not, marketers should go back to the drawing table and see how they can fix it.
Rimma Kats is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York
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