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Friction is probably the most under discussed issue in business. It’s the difficulty customers face when they try to buy your products. And if friction is high, it can ruin the entire customer experience.
The canonical example is in the realm of ecommerce. Ecommerce customers have traditionally faced high frictions when making purchases. Not only do they have to spend ages clicking boxes telling ecommerce businesses which products they want, but they also have to fill out forms with perhaps a dozen fields. It’s not something customers like. In fact, customers hate it so much that the industry estimates that around 40 percent of people who would have bought in a frictionless online environment end up abandoning their carts.
When it comes to shopping, customers want buying to be easy. And they’re usually unwilling to put up with any level of convenience. Sellers should take notice.
So what can you do to reduce friction in your business and get customers to buy from you?
Invest In Apps
Most companies would like to provide customers with easier ways of buying. But the problem is that they are straight-jacketed by the technology at their disposal. Because of the way that browsers operate, it’s hard, if not impossible to make the online shopping experience pain free, even with options like “auto-fill fields.”
So what should companies do? One thing that is becoming increasingly popular is the mobile app. Apps give companies a way to customise the customer environment, making it as pain-free as possible. Apps give you the opportunity to save customer details and add things, like one-click purchases. Even businesses based entirely in the physical world can make use of apps by sending customers reminders for when a service is complete (like a dry cleaning service) or when their meal is ready to be collected.
But what about the expense? Aren’t apps expensive? It depends on what you need your app to do. But thanks to growing app builder platforms, they’re getting cheaper all the time. There’s no need to spend tens of thousands – a simple monthly subscription will suffice.
Getting a contactless card reader is probably the single biggest difference your business can make to the customer buying experience. Instead of having to tap in their PIN every time, contactless payment allows customers to quickly pay for services and then get on with the rest of their day.
Statistics from industry suggest that people love contactless payment. Over 70 percent of people in the 20 to 34 age group are already using the technology, compared to just under half of the general population.
Amazon wants to make a store where people don’t even have to go to the checkout. They can just walk in, take what they want, and their bank account will be debited for the value of the good. Not all small businesses are able to implement a system like Amazon just yet, but with mobile wallets, the ease at which consumers can make purchases is improving. Regular companies can begin accepting digital payment methods provided by the big tech and improve customer experience.