Which tech brands rate highly for their mobile offering?

Technology and telecoms brands O2, Sky, EE, Three, ADT and HP have all rated highly in a new survey gauging companies' customer mobile offerings.

According to the UK's Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB), the six businesses were all deemed to have a mobile-friendly site – defined as either mobile optimised or responsive web design – as well as a mobile and tablet app.

IAB's research also revealed that 62% of the 50 companies analysed, in total, had a mobile site and an app, with 80% of the brands offering customers at least an app. Businesses seemed to favour developing mobile solutions for the Google Play store over the Apple App store, with 72% opting for the former and 58% choosing the latter.

And although 76% of the 50 technology and telecoms brands have mobile-optimised websites, some 6% were still found to have no presence on mobile at all, prompting the IAB to warn of the potential pitfalls for brands that do not offer customers an opportunity to engage with them on tablets and smartphones.

Alex Kozloff, IAB's head of mobile, said his organisation's mantra for 2014 is "to make mobile mandatory", which will involve a series of different sector audits over the coming months.

"It's no longer OK to ignore mobile – if you're looking at engaging, selling or even driving awareness for your brand amongst your consumers, then you need to be embracing this medium," he explained.

Recent research from e-tail trade body IMRG and professional services firm Capgemini suggested that the investment made by multichannel retailers in mobile optimisation and personalisation is paying off, with data showing that a growing number of smartphone and tablet users are converting from browsers into buyers.

During the first half of 2014, multichannel merchants reportedly saw a 79% year-on-year increase in sales via smartphones and tablet devices, while online-only and catalogue retailers grew mCommerce sales by 59%. Multichannel retailers apparently reported that their browsing-to-purchase conversion rate rose by an average of 33%.

According to the study, mobile shoppers spent slightly more with pureplay online retailers than they did with companies that had a store presence – £82 per transaction versus £80, respectively.

Paul Crutchley, strategic engagement director at the mobile operators network GSMA, told Essential Retail recently that retailers and merchants cannot afford to ignore mobile, advising them to integrate it into their business planning.

He said: "In order for retailers, no matter what size, to take steps toward enticing customers in-store they need to understand the current options within the mobile landscape, technologies available to them and the elements that will enable them to enhance their relationships with customers."

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