Your Goal: Make Mobile Habits Happen
E-commerce conversions via mobile rates are up 64% compared to average desktop conversion rates. In the United States, smartphone adoption hovers around 81%. And with this increased penetration and increased engagement, mobile gives you the opportunity for more dimensional customer relationships — when you know where customers are in real time and what their immediate intentions are, you can deliver higher-value experiences.
That’s the ever-growing power of mobile — and that theme was central to the Email and Omnichannel Marketing track at Adobe Summit. During deep dives on this topic, Adobe experts and customers unpacked tools, trends, and techniques you can use to elevate mobile experiences.
Harnessing the power of mobile activation
The first step, said Roger Woods, director of mobile product and strategy for Adobe Experience Cloud, is understanding the personal nature of the mobile platform. Within a mobile environment, customers have deeper and, in some cases, different expectations. For starters, they have higher expectations of trust.
That’s why, he said in his Summit session “Mobile Moments and Engagement,” activation is such a critical mobile metric. Activation is getting users to experience your mobile app’s core value and then help users build a habit around that value. The majority of people download an app and never even open it. By understanding and driving to activation, you can make your mobile experience a habit, increasing mutual value and deepening your customer relationships.
With mobile, Roger said, “You’re getting people to more frequently experience the core value of whatever you’re trying to deliver to them.” Activation, he said, adds lift to key experience metrics. “It helps with net promoter score, retention, and conversion to paid. These metrics drive the actions that we need to take so people form a habit of using the app and stay retained.”
Increasing activation, though, means changing the way brands engage customers. “We’re thinking about this from a life cycle perspective. We’re thinking about how we’re acquiring users and understanding what they’re doing, then optimizing that engagement over time.”
Creating this life cycle of ongoing engagement can make your mobile experience value so high it becomes a habit. Roger explained a three-phase process for activation:
1. Setup: When a customer first performs an action to be set up for your core value proposition.
Looking at the mobile activation life cycle for Adobe Lightroom mobile, for example, the team focuses on getting a customer to import a photo on day one — that, Roger said, is the setup stage.
2. Aha: When the customer first experiences that core value proposition.
With Lightroom, the “aha moment” is when they use color correction, ideally within the first week of download.
3. Habit: When the customer establishes ongoing use around your core value proposition.
For Lightroom, the “habit” is seen as the customer making 10 or more photo edits in the first 28 days.
Following this approach to mobile engagement, Lightroom experienced a 3.3% increase in weekly average users (WAUs) over a four-week period. “It’s a big number on a big installed base,” Roger said.
Personalizing the mobile journey for greater relevance
As you pull customers through your activation funnel, it’s essential to provide relevant touchpoints every step of the way. In his Summit session, “Personalizing Mobile Journeys with Adobe Experience Cloud,” Russell Lewis, Adobe senior product manager for mobile, talked about the added complexities that come as customers leverage a variety of channels and devices during their journeys.
“People interact with you across multiple devices,” Russell said. “To understand who it is you’re [engaging] with on your mobile app, you need to sync that identity.”
Too often, he added, brands forget this. “It’s a simple thing,” he said. “In SDK it’s a method call to set your visitor IDs to say, ‘Here’s my CRM ID’ after they log in, then match it to that anonymous ID from Adobe. Then you have a complete picture in Adobe of who that person is, along with all that other data you have.”
Once you know who a person is, the next step is understanding what they’re trying to do and where they are in their journey. “It adds more context if you know where they are — they’re in an airport and late for their flight, for example,” Russell said. By connecting that complete picture — something you can easily do with your existing identity system — you can see this customer has a flight booking, and that it’s soon. Then, you can roll out reminders and alerts, helping to keep them on track and moving toward their gate.
Also valuable is using Cohort Tables in Adobe Analytics to see customer conversions over time. This feature lets you review who downloaded your app and how many of them made a purchase, and then track back to see the time between install and conversion.
“One in five users will never open your app again — so [it’s] important to nail [your] first impression with customers,” Russell said. After analyzing Cohort Tables, marketers can know more about when customers convert and establish strategies to shorten the download-to-convert timeline.
A simple strategy, he noted, is using Adobe Campaign to create compelling in-app messaging. This can be a picture, a series of pictures, a text, or other targeted content that opens when a customer takes some specified in-app action. Done right, this can drive greater interaction and greater sales, all while creating that all-important activation “habit.”
“A very simple application of in-app messaging is permission priming,” Russell said. “To say, ‘Hey, here’s what I’m going to do with your information to enhance the experience.’” Increasingly, privacy-conscious customers won’t just agree to get alerts, share their location, or turn over their information — they need to understand the value you’ll provide in exchange.
“You need to explain what you’ll do with it,” he said. But if the value is high enough — if that “aha moment” is truly compelling — they’ll agree, and the results can be staggering. “One plumbing company increased opt-ins to 41% from 17% using this strategy.”