7 Hot Mobile Engagement Trends for 2016

By Itay Levy | December 22nd, 2015

We are at a point in history where mobile is intertwined with our everyday activities. Whether you are using your mobile to send a quick Whatsapp message to your friend or to check the live train/bus times, most people do not go anywhere without their phones.

Growth in mobile commerce is unstoppable. In fact, according to a Criterio report in Q2, U.S. mCommerce passed 30 % share. Users are spending more and more time on their mobiles with mobile usage accounting for 62 % of digital time spent and app activity holding 54 %. So how will this play through to 2016? What can we expect to develop in regards to mobile engagement?

7 Mobile Trends We Can Expect To See In 2016:

1. Interactive Engagement in Push Notifications

Today’s consumers aren’t satisfied with just being told a story. They want to be part of the story. In today’s day and age, you have to capture your customer’s attention from the get-go or risk losing them altogether. Push notifications allow different ways to interact with your customers – starting with deep linking the message to a specific place in your app and up to enabling push actions (in iOS 9 and Android 6.0 Marshmallow versions). Push actions allow the user to perform an action without even opening the app, allowing the user to engage with your brand on an ongoing basis. Messaging will generate better results.

Having a trigger from within the app is helpful in the user acquisition cost? Leaking bucket? It is also important to have a push notification center allowing the user to give their preferences.

2. Messaging Platforms

Everyone knows Whatsapp, but there are many other platforms that marketers should pay attention to. WeChat, for example, is used by 500 million users in China and is essentially “The Everything” app. It is not only used for messaging, but also for booking movie tickets, ordering take-outs or playing video games. It can be used as a remote control for your smart home and offers banking services. If desired, your life could be run all from within WeChat. The future of messaging platforms will most likely be a platform for apps. When it comes to gaming, the user base is also expanding, which is evident in their expansive revenue generation. Interestingly, two Asian-based apps, KakaoTalk and LINE, in Korea and Japan respectively, have widened their playing field and have been offering games that link directly to their messaging networks. This ended up generating $311 million people last year across the 180 game titles and products that were sold within those games. With the valuable services these messaging apps are providing, coupled with the potential revenue, it is not surprising to see that the US has already started stepping into the rink to benefit as well.

3. Apple Watch

The Apple Watch is on its way to getting more attention. It has the ability to literally sense how you are feeling and could become an extension of your phone onto yourself! You can already use the watch for Apple Pay in order to buy a coffee at Starbucks, but soon the Watch will be able to sense your temperature and adjust your home thermostat for your expected arrival home, or help you find your car key; the possibilities are endless. What is clear is that the Apple Watch, as simple as its output actions are, is becoming extremely valuable in making our lives simpler and more connected with our devices and products.

4. Location Based Services

53% of consumers are willing to share their current location to receive more relevant advertising. Offering your customers deals based upon location leads to higher conversion rates. It is an obvious fact that, if you provide your users with information that is relevant to them at the right time and when they are conveniently in proximity of your business, it is likely that they will act on your information. Proximity marketing is a highly targeted dimension that allows for the highest level of company-to consumer relationship. The bottom line is that this very effective tool helps generates higher ROI for businesses and advertisers.

We are entering an exciting year with mobile expected to be even bigger than it is now. It is already central to our customer’s lives and our goal is to live up to their expectations and beyond. The key provides the consumer with real-time value through an individual experience, and ROI will follow.

5 Mobile Wallets

Mobile wallets are a great opportunity for marketers to offer a seamless way to purchase directly from your mobile device. Retail chains like Starbucks were quick to adopt this payment luxury to their customers, allowing them to opt out of lines. In fact, 20 % of in-store sales are via mobile transactions, more than twice what they were two years ago. More retailers are going to catch on to this successful trend and really make a hassle-free transaction experience for customers.

6. Omni-Channel

2016 will be the year of omni-channel marketing. Having an omni-channel marketing strategy does mean having a specific strategy for each channel. Instead, they use all the channels together to provide a seamless experience to the customer and to reach a common goal for the company. I expect to see more companies use mobile as part of an omni-channel strategy instead of a stand-alone channel, with some companies already getting a head start. Domino’s Pizza has one of the most engaging omni-channel campaigns right now, allowing customers to place a complete order via a tweet by using as emoji (the pizza emoji). Customers are then sent a direct message in order to confirm the order. This is especially helpful if you’re on the go with your mobile phone and don’t have the time to go through a long ordering process. You can even order via your smart TV or connected car. Domino’s goal is to give their customers the ability to order from anywhere, on any device or platform of their liking. This will continue into 2016 where other brands will see the value of integrated customer experience, omni-channel will be used to bridge the gap between online and offline. Pizza Hut has even taken it to another level beyond our imagination. They now offer in the U.S. Pizza Hut brick and mortar stores an interactive concept table that allows you to customize your order without the hassle of waiting for a waitress.

7. Marketers will invest more in post downloads

With acquisition costs being so high and 80-90 % of the apps not being used more than once, marketers will start to invest more in post downloads. In order to increase revenue and improve the user acquisition to retention cycle, marketers will invest more in active users. There is no point investing more resources in acquisition if you don’t invest more in engagement. What will drive your users from acquisition to engagement, to retention, and to influencing others to acquisition is investing your efforts further down the funnel.


We are entering an exciting year with mobile. It is already central to our customers’ lives and our goal is to live up to their expectations and beyond. The key is to provide consumers with real-time value through an individual experience, and the ROI will follow.

Want to find out what our 5 experts predictions were for mobile trends and best practices for 2016? Check it out here.

Itay Levy
Itay is the Managing Director Mobile Center of Excellence, Teradata Applications. Itay is the former CEO of Appoxee, a mobile marketing automation platform designed by marketers for marketers to increase engagement, retention and revenues to mobile apps now integrated with Teradata. Prior to Appoxee, Itay was part of the founding team of Buzzmetrics, a consumer research marketing company acquired by Nielsen.