a dog waiting outside as woman sits on her phone
With today's release, Qubit is aiming to bring personalized product discovery experiences to mobile shoppers PHOTO: Ross Sokolovski

Qubit, the London-based personalization technology vendor, today unveiled Qubit Aura, a product discovery solution for the mobile web.

With Qubit Aura, Qubit is seeking to help retail brands tackle a specifically mobile issue: while shoppers spend equal time on mobile and desktop, the conversion rate for mobile is only half — according to the company's own research.

Today's global launch follows an exclusive beta period that started in July, which saw 20 businesses integrating Qubit Aura into their mobile ecommerce experiences.

Qubit Aura: Increasing Mobile Product Visibility

Qubit’s personalization platform powers Qubit Aura. Qubit sees the solution fitting into the beginning of the ecommerce personalization process:

“Personalization starts with product discovery, and the results from our beta program prove that if you can increase product discoverability, you can increase your revenue,” said Qubit CEO Graham Cooke, “Ecommerce companies can maintain relevance and differentiate from giants like Amazon with a focus on increased product discoverability. For businesses looking to be customer-centric with personalization, Qubit Aura is a tangible, straightforward, quick to implement, and unique experience for every single visitor.”

During a demo of Qubit Aura, Qubit's Product Director Simon Jaffrey explained the thought process behind Qubit Aura's creation, and the tendency for consumers to discover products, rather than buy them, while on mobile devices:

“[On mobile], consumers are browsing on the move, on a commute or in a meeting, whereas on desktop, [consumers] often take a more considered approach to purchasing.” 

Jaffrey also spoke to the rise of social networks like Instagram and Pinterest, two platforms perpetuating the trend of online product discovery as both a pastime and prelude to purchasing. Jaffrey mentioned Qubit Aura was, in a way, a response to those social networks, so brands could “take control back from Instagram and Pinterest.”

Personalized Product Discovery Experience

During the product demonstration, Jaffrey identified the key element of Qubit Aura — a small, circular icon at the bottom of the screen.

The icon is visible whenever consumers are browsing products, and can be clicked at any time. And that’s when things get interesting.

Qubit Aura leverages machine learning and event-level data collection to organize products into what can only be described as a social network style platform. Instead of shopping by category, consumers can switch to discovery mode to flick through products they may like. 

Pricing is out of view, but shoppers can add products to a list of favorites to revisit — or purchase — later on.

Jaffrey made sure to showcase two separate experiences, explaining that although all visitors see the same platform, nobody gets the same experience. Qubit Aura’s AI ensures that it adapts, providing each shopper with real-time individualized experiences based on their actions and predicted tastes.

Qubit's Mobile Ecommerce Trends

Along with its announcement of Qubit Aura, Qubit revealed some telling statistics from its recent study, which involved watching the traffic of 35 fashion and cosmetics brands since January:

  • Traffic to each channel is about the same: 45.87 percent on desktop vs. 44.7 percent on mobile
  • Conversion rates on desktop are more than double that of mobile: 3.35 percent on desktop vs. 1.61 percent on mobile
  • Revenue per visitor (RPV) is also more than double on desktop: $8.01 on desktop vs. $3.49 on mobile
  • The average number of products viewed per customer is far higher on desktop: 17.99 on desktop vs. 13.65 on mobile

Commenting on the results, Qubit’s press release noted that “most customers use search or a traditional hamburger menu as the [primary] way to discover a brand’s product catalog.”

And once again, it referred to the growing influence of Instagram and Pinterest in the customer journey, stating that, “[Instagram and Pinterest] are pursuing ecommerce strategies for future growth as consumers increasingly discover new product lines, and competitors, on these networks.”

Qubit will of course be hoping that Qubit Aura can change the narrative by helping brands keep those moments of discovery within the confines of their own mobile sites.