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ASOS supports US expansion with new commerce-enabled app

British online retailer ASOS is making a harder push into the United States market with a new application that lets consumers shop and access additional brand content.

ASOS’ mobile app pulls in 850 brands in addition to the retailer’s private line. The app includes many of the basic features that have become table stakes for retailers, such as cross-device log-ins and shopping cart editing features.

“The rapid increase in mobile traffic means it’s important for brands to keep investing in and evolving their mobile offering,” said Matt Hiscock, senior vice president of ASOS U.S., New York.

“Today’s shoppers are on multiple platforms, and it’s our responsibility to offer a seamless and engaging experience as they switch between devices,” he said.

ASOS is an online fashion and beauty retailer that sells more than 60,000 branded and private label products.

Shop on mobile
Consumers can search within the ASOS app by tapping on a bar that stretches across the screen and they can also favorite products.

The shopping cart pulls all items into a vertical list that consumers can quickly edit. Products can also be moved from a shopping cart to a saved section.

The app leverages a log-in so that shopping carts and information are linked between Web and mobile.

The app is available for iOS and Android devices.

ASOS’ app is part of a bigger push to claim the U.S. market. The brand has also opened up a stateside warehouse to speed up shipping.

Additionally, the retailer has launched its subscription-based Premier service, which gives members free two-day shipping, access to deals and collection previews and a magazine subscription for $19 per year.

Beyond on-device commerce?
In addition to the mobile commerce functions, ASOS’ new app also incorporates some of ASOS’ other assets.

For example, runway videos for each product are incorporated into the app and content can be shared across Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Google+.

ASOS has been in the mobile space in Britain for quite some time.

In 2011, the brand launched a commerce-enabled iOS app (see story).

A month earlier, ASOS launched an iPad magazine app that pulls together editorial and shopping content (see story).

ASOS will face significant competition in the U.S. market as an online retailer, many of which are already ahead of the curve with mobile.

Gilt and Rue La La are only two examples of online retailers that have shifted their businesses to heavily rely on mobile with more sales coming through smartphones and tablets.

At the same time, some of the less commerce-focused features in the ASOS app could push consumers to repeatedly use the app. ASOS has also carved out a group of fans outside of Britain, which will give the company traction within the U.S.

“We wanted to make the app reflective of our Web experience which offers a wide range of features, such as runway videos, to give shoppers as much insight into our products as possible before making a purchase,” Mr. Hiscock said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York