Firms Will Under-Invest in Mobile: Here’s How to Profit From It

Mobile may seem to be conquering the business world, but in 2015, most firms will under-invest in mobile business apps, with dire consequences for them. That’s what Forrester predicts in its latest report, “Predictions 2015: Most Firms Will Underinvest in Mobile eBusiness.” But if you play your cards right, that could be the best news for your business.

Forrester sees 2015 as a transitional year in mobile, “accelerating the gap between companies embracing the mobile mind shift and those with executives who underestimate the impact of mobile on their businesses. Casualties of mobile myopia will be more visible in 2015.”

Companies suffering from mobile myopia will essentially stand pat, doing very little to transform their businesses for the mobile future, or engage customers more effectively via mobile technologies, Forrester concludes. Numbers back it up: Forrester found that only 7% of enterprises it surveyed had organizations in place to transform customers experiences through mobile. And at most, only 25% of all companies will do that in 2015.

How To Profit from Mobile Laggards: Invest Heavily Mobile Business Ecosystems

At the same time that most companies fall behind in mobile, smart companies will invest heavily in it, and that’s how your company can benefit in 2015. But you’ll have to be prepared to spend big. Forrester predicts that “mobile will fuel a massive technology and spending arms race,” with leading companies investing in “technology, systems, and processes to engage consumers effectively on mobile devices.” For example, Home Depot has already said it will invest $1.5 billion in mobile, and Hilton Worldwide is investing $550 million. By 2017, companies will invest $189 billion, with a ripple effect throughout the economy of $1.3 trillion.

Merely investing in mobile isn’t good enough, Forrester says. The money needs to be spent wisely. Consumers are suffering from “mobile app fatigue,” Forrester warns. And so rather than merely develop apps, companies should devise a broader ecosystem strategy that moves beyond apps, and engages their customers on third-party platforms and ecosystems including mapping, instant messaging, and social media platforms.

Companies must also recognize that privacy is a hot button with consumers, and that privacy-invading practices can quickly backfire. Forrester concludes, “eBusiness professionals need to commit to a long-term plan to build customer trust and use data to create insights to better serve customers.”