If we look at trends and reconnaissance for the following years, I think we will see several extensive B2B sites where the goal is to become just as good and easy to use as corresponding B2C sites. There is probably a lot of revenue for those who get there first. The one who wait longer will probably end up having to do the work, but as a consequence of that the competitors already have done it, and therefore not as much profit as being first, but more of a survival thing.
I think that challenges to handle large load and be scalable globally will be high on the agenda. Technical solutions around caching in different ways, good base technology, and cloud solutions will have a crucial significance.
I believe that we can see a “second wave” of mobile apps. It was very trendy a few years ago, but slowed down to the benefit of mobile adjusted and responsive sites. It is now starting to come real apps that really contribute to more value for the customer and use the technology that isn’t accessible in a united way with a mobile adjusted web.
Here are a few interesting examples:
Select colours: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CqcF6WZlbv4
Adjusted to pros: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A1xgDssvmrs
Get product information: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=10cx2aCIGAg
Use the chat in the store: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B17Gj7WNi2A
It is exactly these kind of apps that blend the store and e-commerce that I believe will increase a lot in the coming years. Why not use the mobile for self-scanning at ICA, Coop, and others, with a better interface with more product information, recommendations and such. You could alse after checking out in the grocery store get the question if you want the same items delivered to your home next week instead of heading to the store. Why not have a shopping list in the grocery store app where you can check meanwhile you shop, and you could also change store and receive a map of the shelves in a store where you normally don’t shop. Another way to use the app to communicate with your customers both with information and offers. Have in mind if you use the GPS/positioning you can act based on where your customers are.
I think only the imagination will set the boundaries, and you should find relevant values for your target group, and really think of which customer problems you can find by everything you can do with a phone with a microphone, speakers, camera, GPs, and compass, and others.
Technically you need to build the solutions in a way that makes it possible to maintain them over time, and not just have a “dead” app that doesn’t develop or improves, and it must of course work on the different mobile platforms on the market.
One thing that is certain is that the coming years are really exciting and I am certain that we will see several clever solutions that will make everyone’s daily life and work easier.
See you in 2016!