Mobile shopping.

The latest consumer study from financial services firm Synchrony revealed that consumer’s adoption of mobile apps from retailers has increased. The firm found that 67 percent of shoppers have downloaded a retailer’s native app — double the number from last year’s survey.

Why the popularity? According to the survey, shoppers are making purchases through the app and are comfortable with having the technology hold and secure their personal information. The survey polled more than 1,200 respondents.

“As the mobile channel becomes critical for retailers, more consumers are leveraging the apps to buy, browse, read product reviews, access coupons and find a local store,” researchers of the firm said in their report adding that more than half of the 67 percent who have downloaded a retailer’s app “did so specifically for a coupon or discount offer” while “nearly a half of consumers that have downloaded a retailer’s app use it for purchases.”

It’s noteworthy that study was released as Synchrony’s native app plug-in, “SyPI” reached $1 billion in credit card payments since the company rolled out the app in 2016. Companies that use the plug-in include Gap Inc., Lowe’s, Belk and Chevron, among many others.

“SyPI is embedded within a retailer’s app and functions as a complete credit experience,” the company noted.

Maya Mikhailov, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at GPShopper, which is a developer of mobile apps that Synchrony acquired last year, said in the current retail market, “a mobile application is not just another piece of technology for retailers, it is a vital tool to engage shoppers with their brand.”

“Done well, retail apps engage both in and out of stores with personalized experiences and easy credit solutions,” Mikhailov explained. “Consumers that use retail mobile applications are a retailer’s top shoppers. As such, they want their apps to be tailored to their unique shopping experiences and preferences.”

Based on the results of the study, Synchrony offered some recommendation for companies looking to better leverage apps. This includes providing a “consistent customer experience across all channels — mobile is the driver to bring together all the user experience opportunities.” The firm also said it was important to engage with shoppers “in a personalized manner by leveraging data and analytics” while providing “unique offers and discounts via mobile to further extend brand loyalty.”

Lastly, the company suggested making the payment process easier, more “seamless and secure” while creating “an in-app frictionless mobile commerce experience.”

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