THE e-Conomy SEA 2021 report by Google, Temasek Holdings and Bain & Company shows that 8 in 10 internet users in Southeast Asia are digital consumers, prompting companies in the region to change the way they offer goods and services and engage with customers. Spurred by rapid digital transformation, businesses are increasingly investing in mobile application development to create unmatched consumer experiences.
In an exchange of emails, Stuart Fisher, regional vice president for Asia Pacific and Japan for Couchbase, shared with The Manila Times his insights on why developing mobile strategies is crucial to meet consumer demands.
The Manila Times (TMT): Right off the bat, sir, how could mobile technology meet growing consumer demand? Does it necessarily refer to handheld devices used on the go as in, going mobile?
Stuart Fisher (SFi): Mobile technology has been integral in the way we live our lives and operate businesses. As the Philippines moves into the endemic phase of recovery, the sharp focus for connectivity remains and this has been aided by the rapid deployment of mobile technology.
Today’s normal requires individuals to be armed with a smartphone and an arsenal of applications like contact tracing, tele-health and tele-medicine as well as online shopping and delivery services, just to go about their daily lives. Going mobile, so to speak, is a driver to the Southeast Asia region.
As such, mobile commerce will be an integral part of that growth, as the Philippine smartphone market is expected to grow in 2022 after a decline in the previous year. This increase correlates with the number of digital consumers — a Forrester study revealed that more consumers in Asia are shopping with their smartphones now. Spurred by rapid digital transformation, businesses are increasingly investing in mobile application development to meet consumer demands.
TMT: How is mobile technology a more efficient and effective platform for companies to meet consumer demand? What do companies need to do to embrace mobile technology?
SFi: According to the e-Conomy SEA 2021 report by Google, Temasek and Bain & Company, 8 out of 10 internet users in Southeast Asia are digital consumers. This explosive growth is changing how companies offer their goods and services, and engage with their customers. Further, the region is reported to have an increase of approximately 200 million new subscribers to mobile services by 2025, it is only natural then that mobile commerce would grow accordingly.
Companies must prepare for the coming wave of new users to mobile applications, and the way to prepare for this is through a holistic mobile strategy that adopts and deploys next generational mobile technologies.
TMT: What are the essential requirements for companies to take full advantage of mobile technology in business?
SFi: Companies need to consider their mobile strategy to ensure that the mobile experience matches the web experience. With the right technology, organizations could empower developers to not only meet this critical requirement, but also create new and dynamic mobile applications that give them a competitive advantage during periods of high traffic.
Business leaders need to implement a single, universal platform which enables mobile developers to easily and seamlessly manage application deployments — ultimately leading to faster innovation, across a wide variety of verticals and use cases for maximum business uptime and continuity.
TMT: What would it take to develop a mobile strategy that creates unmatched consumer experiences?
SFi: To create unmatched user experiences, businesses in the region must invest in a well-conceived mobile strategy that adopts technologies which empower developers to build innovative, scalable, always available and user-friendly mobile applications or risk losing ground against the competition, and customers as well.
With the right technology, organizations could empower developers to not only meet this critical requirement, but also create new and dynamic mobile applications that give organizations a competitive advantage during periods of high traffic.
As such, improving the user’s mobile experience is essential in building a loyal customer base. Organizations must consider strategies to supplement their mobile and edge capabilities to meet the increasing demands of modern applications, and it is paramount that data must always be available so apps always perform at unmatched speed.
TMT: What is Couchbase’s recommended mobile strategy that puts together fulfilling unmatched consumer experiences, building consumer loyalty and providing cybersecurity protection in meeting growing consumer demand?
SFi At Couchbase, we find that companies find much success with the growing adoption of NoSQL edge-ready data platforms that include an embedded mobile database with built-in sync capabilities. The right mobile database would provide offline-first capabilities for apps, meaning users could retain a first-class experience, even in locations where the internet connection is slow, unstable or completely absent for extended periods. This further ensures a seamless and positive customer journey at every possible touch-point.
Couchbase delivers a high-performance, flexible and scalable modern database that runs across the data center and any cloud.