April 15, 2013 Issue
The Most Powerful Name In Corporate News and Information
BusyLife Software products Go Mobile, Shop Mobile, QuickCart™ Integrated Point of Sale Solutions and Mobile Apps are enabling Consumers to Purchase Goods and Services from Anywhere at Anytime for Pickup, Delivery or Shipping Directly from their Mobile Phones and Devices
About BusyLife Software:
BusyLife Software powers the success of merchants by providing “best in class” mobile commerce solutions which drive sales and enhance the lives of their customers.
Merchant Solutions: Go Mobile with BusyLife Software and revolutionize the way your customers shop. Mobile commerce is proven to increase productivity, improve customer convenience and build customer loyalty. We offer comprehensive mobile software products. With Products like QwikCart™ integrated to Point of Sale solutions, we provide our merchants with branded, mobile commerce solutions that enable their consumers to purchase goods & services from anywhere at any time for pickup, delivery or shipping.
Solutions: Shop Mobile with BusyLife Software. Our mobile applications are
the best way to speed up the little things in life that slow you down. With
a product like QwikCart™, we help you to Do More, Simply. Our QwikCart™
mobile apps allow you to shop at your favorite restaurants and merchants for
pickup, delivery or ship from anywhere, anytime.
Point of Sales Solutions
Denver, Colorado 80202
Interview conducted by: Lynn Fosse, Senior Editor, CEOCFO Magazine, Published –April 15, 2013
Mr. Poelma: The concept is we enable retailers to showcase their full product line on consumer mobile devices. We enable consumer the ability to purchase from their favorite grocery, apparel, restaurants, hardware, home center, pet supply and other stores right from their mobile device any time of day from any location around the world via cell or WiFi. And, we enable distributors and wholesalers to directly reach their retail consumer audience via mobile devices. We are mobile commerce.
CEOCFO: Is it different than the way others present it?
Mr. Poelma: It is via mobile commerce. It has only been made possible since the middle of 2011 when the telecommunications networks at least in North America went from second generation to third generation more so than the ability via mobile devices like the iPhone or the android or the iPad. What has enabled this technology is networks ability to carry data in addition to voice and that has come about over the last 2 ˝ years, so it is a new technology. There are a few other companies out there that are providing mobile capabilities primarily online through a web browser. Ours is not through a web browser but a purpose built designed application or platform, as we refer to it, to support large retailers and midsized retailers to be able to share their retail goods out to the consumer market.
CEOCFO: Are many of the retailers understanding what is available today or is it still somewhat below the radar screen?
Mr. Poelma: It is on the edge of the radar screen and it is now coming into perspective. The mobile device smartphone space has been growing at an annual compounded rate of about 38% quarter over quarter for the last three and a half years. Today, in the US there are about 215 million smartphone devices. With that growth has come the need for mobile commerce capabilities for large retailers which typically have 2,000 plus stores and typically generate somewhere north of fifteen billion in annualized revenue. They are aware of the market and the capability and either have, on their radar, to produce and release a mobile commerce solution for their consumers or already have done so. At this point, the mobile penetration is still very low. In fact, there are 2.2 million retail stores in the US alone and less than 2% of those stores have mobile commerce capability today.
CEOCFO: How do you decide whom you are targeting in your marketing efforts and how are you reaching that audience?
Mr. Poelma: Great question. We have identified within the retail market nine specific segments such as Quick Serve Restaurants, Floral, Grocery, Wine & Spirits and other specialty retail segments. Of those nine specific segments today we support retailers in seven of the nine segments. There are certain markets that make sense for this channel and one, in particular, is grocery as an example. It tends to lend itself to the needs that consumers have where the items are more commodity based. Consumers know what type of milk or dairy or vegetable products they are going to purchase and they do not necessarily need to be there in-person to see them. They can simply order them later in the evening off of their iPad at seven or eight pm and even midnight, if they choose for pickup the next day. Grocery is a great segment that lends itself to mobile commerce as is wine and spirits. A great bottle of Chardonnay from Napa Valley and the ability to order a half case and have it sent to my home without having to set foot in the vineyard is a wonderful thing.
CEOCFO: How do you get the consumer onboard to know what is available and to know the difference?
Mr. Poelma: Each of the retailers have marketing teams and departments. The first goal is awareness and the retailer needs to help the consumer become aware that the capability exists and they do that primarily with in-store signage. They might use digital marketing via email or outbound messaging in some cases via SMS (Short Messing Service), and use incentives such as coupons and loyalty points through their loyalty program. The second step, after they have made the consumer base aware, is then to entice them to give it a go, to try an order from a mobile device and the convenience of being t able to pick up the items or have them delivered across town. What the retailers find is that 52% of the consumers who purchase off of a mobile device will repurchase within the same month and some of them several times within the same month. They discover that the convenience, efficiency and the time savings of mobile commerce is not just efficient for the consumer but also for the retailer. It all begins with awareness and marketing programs outbound to the consumer.
CEOCFO: What was the most challenging piece of technology to put together?
Mr. Poelma: That is an interesting question. The most challenging piece is not the technology because the network exists and the smart phones are in effect little tiny computers that are as powerful as your desktop or laptop today. Many of them have multiprocessors within the little smart phones or even on an iPad or an android tablet, so it is not the network or the smart phone or the computer and it is not the software. The actual challenge in this market is making the consumer aware that this capability exists. This also presents us with the opportunity to partner with retailers who will have this brand-new channel with which to reach millions of consumers with their full product line. We show them how to most effectively market to those consumers. The goal is to make them aware and to incentivize them to try it such that they become repeat consumers. With their mobile device, when the inkling hits them to purchase a certain good or service they can easily do it whether that is in the morning or late at night when stores are closed they still have that capability. In summary the largest challenge and opportunity is actually the outbound marketing via this new channel mobile commerce.
When you approach a retailer what is the ‘aha’ moment?
CEOCFO: How is business now?
Mr. Poelma: Business is great! We have more sales than we have core team to stand up in fact. We have a backlog of business at the moment and a little bit of that is by design. We are now finding ourselves in a position to where, by word-of-mouth, we are having other midsized and large retailers come to us because of this capability. We expect that it will actually grow much in the same way that ecommerce has grown. We anticipate mobile commerce to grow in a more dramatic fashion because of its capability and its convenience.
CEOCFO: What do you look for in your people and are you looking to add to your staff?
Mr. Poelma: We are in the process of growing our staff now. We look for core character traits. It is important to have the skills and important to have the experience but it is fundamental to be a culture fit. We tend to look for candidates that are self starters and take initiative and are fantastic problem solvers. We look for those who are optimistic about whether the challenge is small or large and optimistic in seeing through that challenge and driving to the end result. Humility is another culture trait in BusyLife and it is the ability to reach out to other team members when you are stuck as opposed to being proud and spinning your wheels. We work as a team and we work well together.
CEOCFO: What have you learned in previous ventures that have been most helpful for you?
Mr. Poelma: The harder you work, the luckier you become. The more focused you are the higher your success. Understanding the team and the true issues that they are facing in different departments is important because relating and being hands-on is fundamental to understanding some of the challenges to help your team overcome them. A day spent out with your client or your true customers where lightening actually occurs is the best day that you can spend and you will hear so much direct and important feedback and that is fundamental. You can never have enough network contact relationships with those people with whom you work and with whom it would not be possible.
CEOCFO: Why should the business and investment community pay attention to BusyLife?
In year-end 2012, ecommerce was about $218 billion and that is over a
fourteen-year span. There are pundits that forecast this will be in some
ways faster growth than ecommerce. Even a healthy 20% to 25% increase over
that, you are looking at a $300 billion-dollar market over the next ten
years on mobile commerce alone. It is a very large market and the numbers
that I am quoting here are just US based. If you extrapolate that globally,
it is a very large number with a very large potential and a fantastic
market. The real upside and the reason they should pay attention is, outside
of being an investor or another executive in another company, we are all
people as well and this is a technology that enables humanity efficiencies
and convenience that they may have not experienced before.
“What the retailers find is that 52% of the consumers who purchase off of a mobile device will repurchase within the same month and some of them several times within the same month. They discover that the convenience, efficiency and the time savings of mobile commerce is not just efficient for the consumer but also for the retailer.”- Chris Poelma
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