Micro-moments are when you want something from your mobile phone, and have an expectation for it to be delivered immediately.
They are the moments during the day when you are busy, and you pick up your phone for instant answers or results.
What are the types of mobile micro-moments?
I-want-to-know – I need an answer quickly I-want-to-go – I need to find a local place or business I-want-to-do – There is something I want to do, and I need help or ideas I want-to-buy – I'm ready to purchase
How do these micro-moments relate to my ecommerce app or website?
Google see micro-moments as a “battleground” for brands. With busy lives and little patience, customers and app users are looking for immediate responses. Google says that success will hinge on how well the needs are met for each micro-moment.
Let's focus on the I-want-to-buy micro-moment for ecommerce (though as you will see later, I-want-to-know is also applicable). What does this micro-moment entail? Not just the moment you make a purchase, but research around a purchase too.
So when designing an app, think how this micro-moment would fit in. How quickly can purchase information be found? How easy is it to navigate? Am I providing relevant information to allow someone to complete a purchase?
Obviously being able to buy when you want to buy is crucial. With more people buying via mobile, most businesses have these ecommerce capabilities, with websites and/or apps that look good on desktop, tablet and smartphone screens.
On mobile, space is premium. When customers are at their I-want-to-buy micro-moment, they need to be able to check out quickly. Think about intuitive, simple paths to purchase.
Looking at a product on your mobile... while in store
Have you done this? You're in a shop and you need to make a decision on a product, so you search for it on your phone. The real-life example given by Google is that when confronted with a cheaper product and a more expensive product, a consumer may be interested to read reviews to understand why one is more expensive and if this cost is worthwhile.
This is seen as a critical moment – to quickly give access to product information, helping someone make a decision to buy. Even when they are actually buying in store, and not on their mobile.
As pointed out by Bridget Dolan, vice president of interactive media at make-up chain Sephora, someone who is able to research what they want to and make an informed decision will most likely be happier with their purchase, and more likely to come back in the future.
Ecommerce across devices
Mobile commerce (or mcommerce) can be blended with regular ecommerce (ie, on a larger monitor such as a desktop), say Google.
The example given is a bloke with his contact lenses – he wants to order them quickly, so looks them up online on his smartphone while out. However, he doesn't have his prescription, so needs to go home, get it, and then fills it out on a desktop computer.
So mobile commerce can also form part of the ecommerce journey, being a micro-moment as part of the purchase.