How big data can optimize mobile experience

The unceasing growth of mobile adoption should be good news for many retail businesses both large and small.

Truth is, majority of these consumers tend to leave without making any purchase using their mobile devices. Most of the transactions are conducted over a desktop PC or laptop.

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However, big data analytics may be able to help retail organizations up their mobile-based revenues.

Big data marketing application firm BloomReach Inc., believes big data analytics can help retails enhance a customer’s mobile experience by providing more relevant product choices when they do their mobile browsing.

Creating an excellent mobile experience and following up on a transaction from mobile to desktop is critical because customers use mobile devices extensively while browsing but use another device to close the transaction, according to Joelle Kaufman, head of marketing for BloomReach.

The mobile channel, she said, is “almost insignificant from a commercial perspective” because it is not a “direct channel.”

Another problem is that many retail mobile Web sites offer very poor customer experience and tend to turn off potential buyers.

BloomReach offers a cloud-based big data application that optimizes the content map of mobile Web site to match the characteristics of a particular shopper and the device that individual is using. The app uses a combination of social data, natural-language processing and machine learning technology.

For example, if a shopper were looking for a blue striped shirt, the app will serve up search results of blue striped shirts even if the retailer’s Web site is not configured with such a category. The app can also use past search preference to further tailor the results. For example is the shopper had previously indicated a preference for long sleeved shirts, the results will include long sleeved, blue striped shirts.

The technology uses cross-channel optimization to enable the app to work across different devices even if the customer never authenticates himself. This helps BloomReach determine what a mobile customer bought using their desktop computer.

BloomReach found that more than 50 per cent of people go to the same Web site category page using different devices and more than 30 per cent go to the same product.

The technology helps BloomReach develop personalized categories that group products relevant to a specific shopper based on colour, style, brand and other factors.


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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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