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Retail merchants use mcommerce platform to create mobile storefronts

Luxe Purses and Mint & Berry are among a number of merchants that are selling and promoting on eBay and several other shopping comparison sites via a new multichannel platform.

The companies are using BigCommerce, a platform that lets them integrate social commerce into their online and mobile stores. Merchants can sell their products on eBay, Shopzilla,, PriceGrabber and Facebook.

“We provide our 6,000-plus merchants with a mobile-optimized version of their BigCommerce store right out of the box,” said Mitchell Harper, cofounder/co-CEO of BigCommerce, Austin, TX.

“As soon as any of their customers go to their URL on a mobile device – iPhone, iPad, Palm Pre or any Android device – they will see a mobile store experience that rivals’s mobile experience in terms of feature set and usability,” he said.

Mobile services
The BigCommerce service features an eBay sales integration that lets merchants get their products in front of the eBay community and make them available for auction or sale.

When a product is auctioned or sold, a new order is automatically created in the merchant’s store.

Additionally, merchants can integrate social media in their mobile storefronts by adding a “like”
button for every product in the store.

“Mobile commerce is enabled automatically for all merchants so there is nothing to configure, no programming to take place and no submission process to Apple’s app store for example because our mobile commerce is cross-platform and runs in any Web kit-enabled mobile browser,” Mr. Harper said.

“Because our mobile offering is built with HTML and CSS, our clients have full access to customize the design as required,” he said. “Compare this to building a native application for a mobile device such as the iPhone where you need to know objective C++ and deal with Apple’s tedious submission process.

“All mobile transactions and traffic are tracked automatically using BigCommerce’s point-and-click integration with the free Google Analytics software.”

Optimized storefronts
Merchants can customize their mobile sites specific to each individual handset.

In addition, merchants can list their products on comparison sites such as MySimon, Bizrate and Beso.

“Mobile commerce is still in its infancy but with the release of new devices such as Apple’s iPhone 4 and iPad, as well as Google’s upcoming tablet offering, it will start to account for a lot more traffic and transactions in ecommerce,” Mr. Mitchell said. “As long as the right experience exists on these mobile devices for buying and browsing then the potential is limitless.

“As consumers familiarize themselves with different mobile devices, buying and browsing through those devices is the next logical step, especially when it leads to convenience, which is what mobile really means to them,” he said.

Final Take
Rimma Kats, editorial assistant at Mobile Commerce Daily