There is nothing quite like walking into a stadium or arena on a college game day. Energy and excitement spark against your skin as you make your way through throngs of equally excited fans to find your seats. Strangers wearing the same team colors as you are suddenly comrades ready to help cheer your college team to victory.
However, college sports enthusiasm is not just reserved for those attending the game. Team pride has the power to engage current students, worldwide alumni and general fans with your school’s brand. From the first touchdown, home run, three-point shot or goal to the last, every fan — in the stadium or watching remotely — is personally invested in the outcome. This connection is why fans of all ages and in all locations want to show their support by wearing high-quality fan gear.
Through mobile technology, your school can give fans access to a variety of collegiate wear options and make it easier for them to show their support for your school.
Gen Z and mobile technology
Gen Z is a generation of digital natives. Technology has been a constant presence in their lives since birth, giving them a greater comfort level than even millennials. For Gen Z students, it is natural to integrate online shopping with their brick-and-mortar experience. A student may start researching a product online or in an app before heading to the store to check it out in person.
The “Rise of Mobile Prodigies: Millennials, Gen Z, and the Future of Mobile Marketing” report surveyed 3,000 people between the ages of 14-29 about their mobile usage and expectations. They found that:
- 80% have increased their time on mobile apps
- 74% have made more purchases with apps in the past six months
- 80% use smartphones to find and research the items they want
- 73% choose apps that make shopping more convenient and efficient
- 95% make in-store purchases based on mobile ads
- 80% expect ads to target their location and recognize their interests and habits
Expand your reach with mobile technology
From ordering groceries to using online videos to develop the necessary skills to build a house, billions of people rely on the internet’s almost limitless availability of products, services and knowledge. Since 2014, worldwide internet usage has increased more than 75 percent. However, the way people prefer to access the internet is shifting.
Not that long ago, just having a college store website would have been enough to engage your students, alumni and fans. However, mobile internet usage has surpassed desktop internet usage, and now it accounts for 52 percent of all website traffic worldwide. Smartphones are part of the reason people have changed the way they shop.
Through their phones, consumers have convenient internet access all the time. In addition, mobile apps provide smartphone users with the ability to streamline and personalize their shopping experiences. As a result, 88 percent of U.S. consumers’ total mobile screen time is spent in apps. Each user can select the brands, products and services they want to follow and make ordering as simple as a single click. Even alumni who live thousands of miles away want to show their school pride and get the latest game day wear. Your store’s mobile app can help them do that.
A college store mobile app strengthens your brand
When building your college store’s omnichannel presence, having a great app that is integrated with your store and branding is no longer optional. It is expected. Mobile apps give stores a way to build deeper connections with student and alumni customers through outstanding service. Mobile apps can also help increase in-store foot traffic with exclusive sales, discounts or loyalty programs.
65 percent of those 30 to 35 years old look for in-app deals and offers
These innovative tools give your store flexibility to personalize customer interactions and send important reminders, such as notifications for rental returns or buyback values.
Savvy college stores offer a seamless, branded experience from their store to website to mobile app. Regardless of age or location, all students, alumni and fans can access their college store to find the best collegiate merchandise and show their team support.