When it comes to reducing clutter, our closet is the first place that comes to mind, and it’s the starting point that decluttering gurus recommend.
Overflowing closets illustrate the 80:20 principle: that we only wear 20% of our clothes 80% of the time. We may fill our closets with options, but it’s our trusted favorites that we keep coming back to.
The same principle applies to the mobile apps on our smartphones; more than half of the installed apps remain unused. The average person has 40 apps installed on their phone. However, users split a whopping 89% of their time across just 18 apps. Like the leopard print pants we were sure we’d wear someday, our smartphones are a digital closet that needs cleaning out.
While branded apps were all the rage five years ago, the fad has proven to be a flash in the pan. Gartner predicts that by 2025, 80% of customer service organizations will have abandoned their native mobile apps in favor of omnichannel messaging to provide a better customer experience.
Customers who take an encapsulated approach to apps
Consumers seem to suffer from decision fatigue and reduce the time they spend on different apps. People prefer a small selection of quality items in their wardrobe, and they’re taking the same approach with their apps.
Taking a holistic approach to fighting clutter, Marie Kondo inspires thousands of people to discover the joy of less with her minimalist approach.
“We can discover joy by containing chaos and freeing ourselves from excess,” says Marie.
People take notice. Every second app is uninstalled within just 30 days of download. As a result, companies are losing around $57,000 a month. Trying to distract customers from their preferred channels is a costly business. Add in the investments required to maintain apps, and the appeal of a branded app diminishes even further.
Now more than ever, delivering customer communications through popular existing channels is a must. Rather than trying to lure users away from their favorite apps, it’s time to meet them where they are – branded apps need to be the perfect accessory, rather than trying to be a fashion statement that doesn’t last.
While the most coveted properties reside on customers’ smartphones, businesses must look through the lens of individual customers to decide what is appealing and convenient. Just like fashion, what suits one customer may not suit another.
For example, research shows that the majority of users prefer WhatsApp and chat apps as their preferred communication channels compared to social media or in-app messaging. For Xennials (ages 35 to 44) and Gen Xers (ages 45 to 54), email remains the preferred choice. This trend towards digitally-led communication will continue to gather pace, and brands must prioritize an omnichannel strategy that embraces all applicable channels and allows them to create an enduring connection.
For the perfect ensemble – vertically and horizontally
Moving away from apps doesn’t mean giving up innovation or giving up digital transformation—quite the opposite. No two clients are exactly alike; In order to meet the increased expectations, we cannot take a one-size-fits-all approach. To create great experiences, you need a clear picture of your customers. You need to know who they are, how they have interacted with you in the past, and what they are interested in right now.
The future of retail is in conversation. We’re moving into an environment called conversational commerce, where you can do anything with a brand in one conversation. Armed with the memory of every interaction and the ability to use AI to learn over time, conversational commerce can help businesses create exceptional personalized customer experiences.
We are on the cusp of the conversational commerce movement, which could evolve in two ways: through digitally advanced industries and customer journeys. Dior’s recent launch of a WhatsApp chatbot is an example of how one industry – in this case, luxury cosmetics – has leveraged technology and conversational commerce to deliver innovative experiences across channels.
The next wave would be creating memorable experiences throughout the customer journey, from authentication and activation to purchase, to provide the end customer with a seamless end-to-end experience.
Simplify consumer conversations
To gain loyal, long-term customers, you need to capture consumers’ attention and serve them in places that are convenient for them. Apps were all the rage five years ago, but a simple conversation is now much more engaging for customers and more sustainable for brands.
Companies looking to embark on this journey have the first-mover advantage on their side. By starting to experiment now, they can take the time to figure out what works best for their business and adapt as they go.