While Web-based retargeting historically focused on recent visitors who abandoned an onsite purchase, certain aspects of mobile behavior completely disrupt traditional retargeting practices.
For instance, TapCommerce CEO Brian Long pointed out that mobile app installs, “especially in the retail vertical, indicate [by download] you probably like a brand and have transacted with them in the past, so there’s a better chance of re-engaging them.” In this instance, the challenge for brands is continuing user engagement after the initial app install.
Launched in 2012 after raising $1.2 million of seed capital, Long said TapCommerce has since grown to more than 50 customers, including eBay and Fab.com, doubling its revenue over the past eight months.
Moving forward, the New York-based technology company intends to focus on domestic and international expansion. The company is in the process of opening a West Coast office, adding a GM of Europe and increasing its engineering talent and plans to tap into the Latin American market. Scott Friend of Bain Capital and Eric Wiesen of RRE Ventures have joined TapCommerce’s board of directors.
As marketers seek more ways to target mobile users, startups like TapCommerce have become increasingly attractive to investors. Mobile commerce in particular is taking off — research firm comScore predicts holiday purchasing on mobile devices will increase 17% versus last year. Retail brand Tory Burch attributes more than 28% of sales to mobile devices, and 44% of its total traffic comes from smartphones and tablets.
“I think people have been saying for a long time that this is the year mobile commerce will really take off,” Long said. “We’ve gone from seeing 10% of [brand] revenues increase to 40% of revenues” coming from mobile.
Another indicator of this growth is the numerous acquisitions around mobile buying and advertising technologies in recent months. Twitter, for instance, snapped up mobile ad exchange MoPub; performance display provider Criteo bought mobile analytics firm AD-X Tracking; and eBay acquired payments platform Braintree to pad out PayPal’s mobile capabilities.
For brands, the end game is to be accessible to consumers — which is why they’re looking for tech partners that can help them achieve that accessibility, particularly on the mobile devices where people increasingly spend their time. Companies want better automation, the ability to provide easy-to-use payment interfaces and the ability to engage with mobile customers.
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