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Brookstone drives sales with new mcommerce Web site

Retailer Brookstone is expanding into to the mobile space with its first mobile commerce-enabled Web site.

Brookstone teamed with mobile developer Usablenet for to create a Web site compatible with any Web-enabled handheld. The site adds value by letting customers shop for products, view rich media content and locate nearby stores.

“Brookstone wanted to create a successful mcommerce experience for customers with any type of mobile phone,” said Jason Taylor, vice president of global product strategy at Usablenet, New York. “[The mobile Web site is] a response to the growing use of mobile phones as a tool to browse and shop on the Web.”

Merrimack, NH-based Brookstone is a retailer that produces and sells a variety of products with a notable focus on electronic gadgets. The company has 310 locations nationwide.

Usablenet works with brands to convert their conventional Web sites for the mobile space. Its clients include Dell, Marriott and Amtrak.

How it works
Brookstone and Usablenet designed the mobile Web site as a tool for customers who want to shop on-the-go, as well as those looking to enhance their in-store experience, per Usablenet.

“Customers are able to search or browse Brookstone’s full catalog of products, look up product details, purchase any product via guest or logged-in mode,” Mr. Taylor said. “Users can also use the store locator to find store locations nearest them.”

Consumers trying to enter the Brookstone Web site will be redirected to, optimized for handhelds.

The home page includes a search feature where users can plug in keywords to find particular items of interest, and product categories are listed beneath.

Here is a screen grab of the homepage:

Clicking on a category – “Outdoor Living” and “Electronics” for example – lets users navigate the different sections of the mobile store, and leads them to new pages with more detailed product groups such as “pillows” or “hammocks.”

The homepage links to pages where customers can order catalogues to their homes and track their orders, and also features click-to-call functionality.

A store locator linked from the top of the homepage lets users find the nearest Brookstone retailer, integrating Google Maps technology.

Here is a screen grab of the store locator feature:

Pages listing products include images of the items, as well as pricing and user-generated product ratings.

Here is a screen grab of a list of products on the mobile Web site:

Customers can also find customer reviews, alternative images of the products and information about shipping costs.

Users on the Web site can also access YouTube-integrated videos of product demonstrations.

Brookstone claims it is one of the first companies to let users view videos on a mobile retail Web site.

Brookstone is using its mobile commerce site to target a wide variety of consumers on the go, per Usablenet.

“[The Web site targets] customers on the go, those who travel and even customers who seek out more product information or reviews on their mobile phone to complement their in-store experience,” Mr. Taylor said.

Usablenet says one of the biggest draws of its platform is its universality.

“Brookstone wants to provide a universal mobile commerce solution for its clients,” Mr. Taylor said. “This approach offers all mobile phone users a successful experience for shopping without having to download an app.”