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Benjamin Moore retailers extend presence into mobile via optimized sites

More than 1,500 independent retailers selling Benjamin Moore products have launched mobile-optimized sites through a program offered by the paint manufacturer and ChannelNet.

With mobile devices playing a key role for consumers as they research and shop home repair items, it is important for retailers to make it easy for these to find what they are looking for via their smartphones and tablets. Benjamin Moore has offered its retailer network a Web site program since 2009 and expanded it into the mobile space in early March.

“We provide a retailer Web site program for Benjamin Moore retailers,” said Paula Tompkins, CEO and founder of ChannelNet, Sausalito, CA.

“An extension to that program is the mobile solution so a consumer that is on the go can check out the Web site, get driving directions from the GPS on their smartphone, press a button to call the store and send an email or SMS to let the store know they are on their way and want to speak to a representative,” she said.

“For people who are out on the road and doing errands, mobile enables them to easily and quickly get to information and see what kind of store it is.”

Mobilizing home repair
Mobile is becoming an increasingly popular way for consumers and homeowners to interact with brands when they have time, whether while  they are waiting in line or in a store. Shoppers want information easily accessible on their terms and having a mobile Web site enables Benjamin Moore retailers to provide home owners the information they need to select the right paint and find the nearest retailer.

For home repair shoppers, in particular, mobile can play an important role with shoppers taking and storing measurements on mobile device or using the devices to take pictures of what needs repairing.

Benjamin Moore has more than 4,000 North American retailers, including hardware stores, specialty paint stores and decorating stores. The retailers are independently owned and operated and often sell more than just paint.

More than 1,500 of the brand’s retailers have a Web site through the ChannelNet program. For these retailers, their sites were automatically extended into mobile and is optimized.

Where the customer is
The mobile sites are all different and primarily focus on the retailers and the variety of services and products they offer.

The retailers using the mobile sites are able to detect what devices are accessing the site, include linkable phone numbers, detect the location of shoppers and the ability to add coupons and promotions.

ChannelNet reports that it is seeing an increase in interest in mobile optimized Web sites from manufacturers in many verticals, including retail, automotive, entertainment and financial services.

“The idea here is that you really you have to be where the customers are, whether they are in the car or at home using their tablet or at the office sitting a desktop PC,” Ms. Tompkins said. “You really have to be ready to be able to participate in all the different channels that are available.”