We know that the Academy Awards or The Oscars is considered the premier awards ceremony in the world and every actor, director and technician making films aspires to win at least once in his lifetime. What if we award Oscars to mobile commerce apps in the country? Which app do you think will win one for itself? So let’s humor ourselves and decide which app wins an Oscar for these categories – Design, User Experience, Time Taken to Launch Page, Features and Checkout Process. (Our lead designer cutely called them Moscars).
Without further ado, let’s dive right in! Oh wait! Time for a disclaimer – the following awards are just a personal opinion of the writer and he was not paid to include any names either.
Now we can start. Let’s just stick to the following e-commerce apps for the awards – Flipkart, Snapdeal, Amazon, Myntra, and Jabong.
Design is probably the most important aspect of an application that gives users the first impression if the app is good enough for them or not! (Well, they said don’t judge a book by its cover, but the cover matters a lot when it is a mobile app). So who wins the design battle? This one is simple. Myntra easily takes the cake without much effort. Even though Amazon, Flipkart and other apps are well designed, Myntra clearly stands out from the rest with its clean design and brilliant animations.
The User Experience is going to be the tricky one. Every user has their preference of using an application. So for this, we will look at the app ratings from the Play Store. Flipkart tops the list comfortably with an avg. rating of 4.3 and doesn’t look to come down anytime soon. But with improvements and updates to apps every day, this category is going to very volatile. Myntra seems to be hot on its heels to grab the award.
Time Taken to Launch Page
Speed is the soul of a mobile app. If you are waiting for more than a couple of seconds, then the app is just not good enough. In our list of apps, Myntra’s mobile shopping app is the Ferrari of shopping apps (or Mercedes, they won the F1 championship last year). Myntra takes less than three seconds to load, but the others aren’t very far behind. Jabong and Snapdeal both do pretty good taking less than four seconds from launch to load the landing page (on a high-end Android device).
Features are what differentiate one app from another and make shopping through the app easy. Flipkart’s new interactive search and combo offers allow them to stand out from the rest and gives its customers a more streamlined experience. Snapdeal’s shake to download offer is also a refreshing feature in an otherwise boring list of available features found commonly, so it definitely deserves a mention.
The most important step after choosing products is the checkout process. Checkout is also the primary culprit for most shopping cart abandonments. A good design and a detailed checkout process put customers at ease and avoids shopping cart abandonments. All e-commerce apps have a well-designed checkout process, but Amazon’s and Flipkart’s 2-step checkout process makes finishing purchases lightning fast. So for this one, we have to give it to both Amazon and Flipkart.
It’s all about marketing and generating leads/traffic. The more traffic you have, the more sales you will get (when you have merchandise of over a billion dollars in GMV, we will assume that there won’t be any compromise in quality of the goods). For e-commerce, external referrals holds the key in generating traffic to the app and Snapdeal looks to be ahead of the competition in this regard. More than 75% of the traffic leading to their app is generated from external sources while others are a bit behind in this regard.
One store can’t fulfill the needs of all online customers, it is simply not possible. The products are diversified, limited stocks and space for storage. At the end of the day, it is simply not economical. For a successful e-commerce store, the ability to satisfy each and every online customer is only possible with a marketplace, and Snapdeal understands this. They have over 100k sellers on their platform selling to customers every day and no other online store is even close to cracking that number. So the big bad marketplace champion is Snapdeal here.
On a serious note, 2014 was the year mobile commerce came of age. The growth seen in mobile commerce over the year far stripped all forecasts. People are now buying more from their mobile devices than they ever did on their PCs. A year ago, half the known e-commerce apps were still in development and the other half weren’t still looking to improve their app experience. Now, e-commerce companies are spending a good chunk of their budget on marketing trying to bolster their mobile user base.
With over 50% of the total sales coming from mobile devices, mobile looks to take the center stage in e-commerce in the coming years. It’s a complete app world out there, if e-commerce companies even stop for a second to catch their breath, their competitors will take advantage of that and just run over them.
With this, I now close this awards ceremony!
About the Author:
Satya Krishna Ganni, Founder and CEO – MartMobi