Sharpcards sees dramatic increase in mobile ecards since British postal strike
As the postal service in Britain continues to be in a state of flux, the ecard company said that consumers have turned to the mobile platform as a way of getting in touch with loved ones. Sharpcards said that it saw the highest amount of traffic on its ecards service on Oct. 22, the first day of the national postal strike.
“[Consumers are using mobile] because it’s the obvious thing to turn to,” said Will Walsh, CEO of Sharpcards, London. “Just as the computer is the thing you turn to when you want to research something, and the iPod is what you turn to when you want to download music, the mobile device is the thing you turn to when you want to keep in contact.”
Sharpcards’ ecards can be downloaded from most British carrier portals and sent via mobile phone to any other mobile user. Brands such as Disney and Cartoon Network have ecards on the Sharpcard platform.
Every card can be personalized and delivered via MMS directly to each recipient’s phone.
Since the national postal strike, Sharpcards has seen a 63 percent increase in unique buyers compared to the monthly average.
This is not the first time Sharpcards saw an increase in consumer usage.
In July, during another postal strike, Sharpcards saw an 82 percent growth in visitors using its application.
The company also saw a 64 percent increase in unique buyers over a three-day period compared to the monthly average.
Sharpcards’ wireless carrier partners are promoting ecards to their customers as a way of getting around the strike.
The mobile ecard provider charges around $1 per send. The customer is charged like a text message on his or her phone bill.
Mr. Walsh said that Sharpcards launched mobile ecards because ecards became a standard messaging option on the mobile phone, right alongside text messaging.
The consumer base for Sharpcards is usually teenaged females, but Mr. Walsh said now that ecards can be accessed from the text messaging menu, he expects the demographic will get older and skew even more toward females.
“As text messaging continues to go ballistic, it’s completely natural that consumers now want to send something a little bit more meaningful with their mobile,” Mr. Walsh said. “Ecards are absolutely perfect.”