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Condé Nast’s Wired tests tablet shopping to build ecommerce strategy

Condé Nast’s Wired is the first publication to try out a new type of mobile commerce from MasterCard that seamlessly lets consumers shop from a digital edition.

The technology-focused magazine is rolling out shoppable content within the November issue. Although publishers continue to see an increasing amount of mobile traffic, few publishers such as Wired are tying unique commerce experiences to digital editions.

“In launching this pilot Wired is hoping to gather key learnings and consumer insights to inform our ecommerce strategy in the future,” said Howard Mittman, vice president and publisher at Wired, New York.

Seamless tablet experience
Wired is the first magazine to partner with MasterCard to offer the MasterPass-powered technology within the November iPad edition.

Current subscribers can download the issue for free.

Consumers that want a digital-only copy of the magazine can buy individual issues for $2.99 or pick a $19.99 monthly subscription plan.

As consumers page through the digital edition, calls-to-action prompt consumers to shop.

For example, an image of a tea pot from Blomus Sencha in an article can be clicked on to be instantly bought.

Consumers can then buy products from, which is the first retail partner to use the technology.

One of the differentiators compared to other commerce-enabled editions is that the shopping keeps consumers within the reading experience.

The commerce part of the tablet edition is powered by MasterCard’s new technology called ShopThis! that ties a purchase to a MasterPass account.

Similar to other payment forms such as Google Wallet or PayPal, MasterPass lets consumers link a credit card to streamline the check-out process for consumers on retailers’ and brands’ mobile and Web properties.

Wired’s iPad issue will be available to readers on Oct. 15, and the shoppable pages will be within iPad editions through January.

Shoppable magazines
Wired is not the first Condé Nast publication to make a big push into mobile commerce.

In August, beauty publication Allure rolled out a shoppable version of its tablet edition to let consumers shop from 64 pages (see story).

Condé Nast’s Glamour brand has also been active in mobile commerce in the past few years.

Last year, Glamour loaded its September issue with mobile bar codes from brands such as Zales and Unilever to let advertisers interact with readers on a deeper level (see story).

In this case, Wired is hoping to gain some insights from the pilot that will impact a bigger commerce push in the future.

“Wired’s ultimate goal is to deliver the ability to purchase from the issues seamlessly, and this partnership with MasterCard represents a crucial first step in converting Wired’s content to commerce,” Mr. Mittman said.

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