Wearable devices are becoming all the rage among consumers. From tracking health to knowing their schedules, these gadgets are growing in popularity. Apple's recent release of its Apple Watch further shows how people are looking for the next best thing for convenience. While it will definitely be something that needs to be worked into your financial plan, you should jump on the wearables' bandwagon to get a head start on your competitors.
Appeal to your customers
At this year's Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple announced WatchOS 2, the device's newer operating system. The updated version provides businesses with a software development kit that gives them the opportunity to create native applications that are completely separate from the iPhone, according to Fast Company. No longer will consumers have to use their smartwatches in conjunction with their phones. App developers will be able to access the microphone, audio speaker, tap, digital crown and HealthKit.
With the wide range of features available, companies can take advantage of wearable devices to improve their customer service. Notifications will be the driving force behind businesses' success. Some companies' apps, such as Target's, sync with shopping and wish lists to ensure consumers don't forget anything when they arrive at their stores, Retail Dive explained. Through beacons placed around the store, the Apple Watch and its apps will notify you when you approach listed items while on-site. J.C. Penney's works similarly, but with added features. It'll offer suggestions based on shopping histories and special occasions and locates out-of-stock items at nearby stores.
Unfortunately, actual shopping on the Apple Watch can be inconvenient due to its size, but there are plenty of other uses for apps. Along with serving as store guides, businesses' platforms can alert customers of sales and deals, which will help improve conversion rates. They may also notify them if their favored products are running low or are out of stock. eBay uses its smartwatch app to let people know if higher bids have been placed on desired items and allows them to update their own bids, The Street reported.
"eBay's goal is to facilitate shopping whenever and wherever – on their desk, in their pocket, or even on their wrist," David Cheng, director of mobile products at eBay, told the source. "The eBay for Apple Watch app will be another step forward in driving our vision to deliver frictionless commerce by bringing simplicity while maintaining utility."
Manage business operations
Aside from customer service, you'll also be able to use an Apple Watch to manage your business' daily functions. While this means you'll have to take some money out of your business banking to put toward the devices, it also means that you'll have access to your work documents on the go. Mobile apps, such as Shopify's, let you monitor your store's metrics, from order volume to sales, Entrepreneur explained. You'll also be immediately notified each time a customer places an order. Instead of having to pull out your phone or log onto your computer to check how your business is doing, you can simply glance at your wrist for the same information.
The wearable device can also help you stay stocked up on all your necessary supplies in the office. Amazon and similar companies have click-to-buy options, which let you buy frequently-purchased items with the touch of a button, according to Retail Dive. While you won't easily be able to browse for new products, you will streamline your ordering process on the ones you buy often.
If you haven't worked your way into mobile, you may want to start with phone apps instead of the Apple Watch game. You'll have a much better chance of reaching your audience because of the number of people who have smartphones. However, if you do have a mobile app, you should try to simplify it to make it user-friendly for wearables.