We all recognize mobile devices and applications can improve business, I mean, that’s what we’re all trying to do here, isn’t it? Accelerate the speed at which we conduct business through faster decision making. Developing mobility to conduct thorough research and cloud storage management will better equip executives to make well-informed decisions.
Forbes Insights has just released their latest research, “The Connected Executive, Mobilizing the Path to Purchase.” Simply click on the title to follow a link to a downloadable PDF. Here, I take you through what this research asserts.
As professionals we are aware that mobile devices are ubiquitous. We are also aware that business is moving away from convoluted ordering and purchasing. Even in my own life I find myself shying away from any website that isn’t mobile phone compatible. It’s almost archaic to use two fingers to zoom in and scroll … who has time for that? All jokes aside, businesses are sweeping over websites if they aren’t optimized for mobile devices. In the executive summary of the complementary research, Forbes writes,
“Executives are already highly mobilized, and it’s up to B2B services and vendors to meet this opportunity with mobile apps and websites that enable simple and seamless business transactions.”
The key findings in this report are astounding. Despite the increase of mobile devices in the office, executives are using phones and tablets as research tools, up-to-date reference guides and for mobile file management. More than 25% of the executives interviewed for Forbes’ report are already purchasing directly from a phone or tablet.
Realize your Weaknesses and Make them Strengths
Imagine, you’re an executive and a new product, Product Z, has just come on the market. You remove your tablet from your briefcase you instantly look up Product Z, read reviews and check out all the bells and whistles. You realize that Product Z could dramatically increase the efficiency of your supply chain. You flip over to look at your budget, conveniently saved as an updated Excel file in your cloud storage application. Also, you pull up the profit and loss statement showing how Product Z will save money in the short-term and long-run. A half a second later you’ve moved back to the mobile website, where you make the purchase. In about thirty minutes you’ve set your business in the right direction… all on a tablet.
Forbes Insights, Figure 2. Reprinted from “The Connected Executive,” by Joe McKendrick, 2013, p. 7.
Forbes shows that in 3 years, mobile devices are forecasted to increase 39% as executives’ primary business platform and PCs to decrease 47%. This makes mobile applications not only a priority, but a necessity. Syncing and sharing files across mobile device platforms is a must, and only achievable through cloud infrastructure.
Gain the Competitive Edge
How is this happening? Denis O’Dwyer, CEO of Wide Open Spaces opened up to Forbes Insights stating, “We’ve made supply purchases. We’ve paid vendors via PayPal, right off the tablet. When they send us an invoice, it’s just a one-click pay affair.” These aren’t simple purchases either, Figure 5 shows mobile purchasing is occurring at the hundreds of thousands of dollars level. Just 4% in 2013, but likely to rise as we find increased collaboration between vendors and businesses.
Forbes Insights, Figure 5. Reprinted from “The Connected Executive,” by Joe McKendrick, 2013, p. 8.
Figure 6 shows key reasons why mobile websites or apps are not used to make purchases. To sum it up, these mobile apps were too slow, not user friendly, not optimized for mobile use and require additional confirmation from another party.
Forbes Insights, Figure 6. Reprinted from “The Connected Executive,” by Joe McKendrick, 2013, p. 9.
Cindy Rakowitz, CEO of Blackman Rackowitz Public Relations, another Forbes interviewee puts our reservations in black and white,
“The purchases I make for my office are usually while I’m at my office, where I use the PC. This is probably psychological. Now that I’m feeling more confident doing business in the cloud — I will probably replace my PC with something more modern.”
Here we gain our competitive edge. Whether we are the buyer or the supplier, mobile optimization is key as we move into the future. Professionals need to have all their resources in one place — in one hand.
McKendrick, Joe. The Connected Executive: Mobilizing the Path to Purchasing. In Forbes Insights. July 2013, from http://www.forbes.com/forbesinsights/google_mobility_2013/index.html.