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Old Navy to bolster holiday sales with in-store shopping app

Specialty retailer Old Navy is upping its mobile efforts with an iPhone application designed to increase holiday sales and let consumers know about new products.

The Snap Appy app lets consumers scan products in-store to unlock season-themed surprises and rewards while shopping. Additionally, the app connects to the retailer’s mobile-optimized Web site to let users shop from home.

“As our marketing evolves, we’re focused on innovating and looking for culturally relevant ways to better engage our target customer, and best serve who she is today,” said Deborah Yeh, vice president of marketing at Old Navy, San Francisco.

“Old Navy’s new mobile app, Snap Appy, addresses our customers’ desire to have a shopping tool for their mobile-based lifestyles,” she said.

Snap happy
Old Navy is using the Snap Appy app as part of the company’s current Funnovations Inc. campaign that promotes the retailer’s fall and winter collections.

The app uses image-recognition technology that captures the retailer’s logo.

Consumers who use the app to snap a picture of Old Navy’s logo can unlock deals, games and fashion tips with the app.

Additionally, consumers can scan select merchandise in-store to interact more with the products.

Shoppers can also purchase items directly from Old Navy’s mobile-optimized Web site inside the app.

Users can also upload pictures of themselves in some of Old Navy’s most popular types of apparel including stripes, denim and animal prints.

Consumers can receive fashion tips by scanning Old Navy’s logo

The app is currently available in Apple’s App Store and has plans to be available on Android devices in the coming weeks.

Snap Appy replaces the retailer’s existent app, so users who have the Old Navy iPhone app will be prompted to upgrade.

“By bringing magic to the Old Navy logo through a quick snap using the app, it makes shopping more fun, engaging and rewarding for users anywhere they see a logo,” Ms. Yeh said.

In-store guide
By combining in-store shopping apps with mobile commerce, Old Navy is showing that it takes mobile seriously with its upgrades to the Snap Appy app.

The app also includes multiple areas that are key components of developing a shopping app, including deals, a store finder, click-to-call features and alerts.

For a retailer specifically, image recognition is smart to incorporate for in-store shopping because it allows consumers to view items in store and find out quickly where to purchase them.

Old Navy is not the only retailer stepping up its mobile push this holiday season.

For example, British retailer Debenhams recently began a campaign involving augmented reality for this holiday season (see story).

“Mobile is a strategic element for Old Navy marketing channels as we watch increasing mobile penetration and usage with our target customer, which is integrated into most digital advertising efforts,” Ms. Yeh said.

“Snap Appy acts as a shopping tool, a source of entertainment for our customer and a source of fashion inspiration from the community of Old Navy fans,” she said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York