How do you include mobile in your business flow?

Posted on February 15, 2012

As more and more customers or potential customers have mobile devices, there are an increasing number of opportunities to engage with them on their device.

Yet, it’s not simply a question of putting information on a smartphone, and expecting a customer to engage. Mobile is a new way of interacting, it’s more personal, location aware and much more social and interactive. This whole new paradigm introduces many more opportunities for engaging on a whole different level and depth with customers.

The next level of value then comes from integrating mobile and social with information and interactions from within your business flows.

How can one of your customers help themselves by preparing their visit to you? Is there information they can give you? Would you like them to review some information before they arrive? Can you tell them how long they need to wait in different locations around them?

Let a customer indicate their preferences for a good; and you can show them where it’s in stock in different locations, and let them reserve it. You can even indicate how long it would take them to get there. Having a customer arriving at one of your places? Have them take a photo so they can be recognized; and send them a photo of who will be meeting them. Engage with customers who have indicated through social media that they have been in your location.

What are the things that are very specific to your business where a customer can perform an action that will help them and help you? For example, can they order their morning coffee and donut on their mobile phone, send it to the nearest Drive Thru and then pick it up at an express window without a long delay?

The more personal nature of mobile devices can also increase the quality of interactions with customers. For example, rather than showing a customer a traditional paper based catalog, why not interact with them while they search through an electronic one, stating their preferred material, colour and size? You can then send them their choices by email so they have a record. Mobile increases customer satisfaction and can make business processes run smoothly.

There are many ways in which mobile can make your customers’ lives easier, and your processes flow more smoothly with an increased flow of information.

Integrating mobile technologies into your business flow though can be rather complicated. It is important to understand how mobile can fit in, make improvements to the process without diminishing it and deliver a great experience for customers and staff. In addition, integration with business systems can be complex, and it’s important to ensure that data integrity is maintained and all technical parties are fully and correctly connected.

Yet although it’s not a simple processes, the benefits of including mobile in your business can be huge.