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Consumers criticise shopping apps

02 February 2016 - 13:50 by Graham Miller

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Although many of the UK’s biggest retailers have created mobile apps as a companion to their existing in-store and online shopping platforms, the majority of people are not satisfied with the cohesiveness of the user experience.

This is according to a report from Apadmi, in which 59 per cent of respondents were found to be avoiding the use of retail apps because they do not offer features and functions which can be used to enhance high street shopping.

Retailers are regularly advised of the need to embrace an omnichannel approach to offering their services, but it seems like hastily designed apps are souring things for consumers. Many people want to be able to carry out safe shopping online when they are out and about, on the sofa and even in bricks and mortar stores themselves.

Eleven per cent of those questioned said that they make use of every platform on which their favourite retailers operate, while just one per cent said that they only make use of a mobile app offered by popular outlets and shun their presence elsewhere.

Conversely, two thirds of respondents said that they often resort to using a retailer’s mobile app to carry out safe shopping online when they are at home. Thirty one per cent said that they tend to use apps while they are visiting the high street itself, indicating that there is a major slice of the population engaging with apps even if the experience is, ultimately, unsatisfactory.

In the past few months, mobile apps have become more closely ingrained with the web thanks to updates to Google’s search engine, so retailers have never had more reason to invest in the development of apps that are truly useful, whether someone is sitting at home shopping from the sofa, or visiting a store in person.