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Donald J Pliner’s mobile Web site sees 3pc increase in order size

Footwear and accessories brand Donald J Pliner has seen drastic improvements in sales and membership as it celebrates its one-year anniversary of implementing a mobile-optimized Web site, including a three percent increase in average order size.

The site differs from typical Web-responsive sites with the use of an adaptive design and content that is customizable across each channel, giving the brand the ability to maintain certain inventory geared towards the mobile user. Ecommerce software platform MarketLive managed the brand’s transition to mobile in attempt to triple online revenue within a three-year period.

“These big brands typically have 100 percent of their inventory online, rather than big retailers like Nordstrom having limited inventory in-store,” said Ken Burke, CEO and founder of MarketLive, San Francisco. “Consumers are shopping in-store meanwhile looking up things on their phones. Turning to mobile is critical as consumers are fully engaged on mobile.”

Behind the scenes
Metrics from Donald J Pliner’s first year with the revamped site also show an improvement in conversion rates and five percent fewer cancelations due to a better system and inventory integrations.

The brand approached MarketLive executives with several goals to achieve through the innovation. Those goals included tripling online revenue within a three-year period, gaining proactive and strategic advice on how to optimize online revenues and improve the customer experience, and upgrading to a more flexible ecommerce platform that would allow for easy changes and updates.

Other goals included improving page-load performance to accelerate the shopping experience, enabling easy additions of features and functionality to the Web site without expensive recoding, and allowing for better testing and quality evaluation before launching new site features.

MarketLive’s adaptive design system makes possible different inventory lists available to consumers shopping on mobile versus desktop. Rather than typical responsive sites simply modifying content by screen size, MarketLive’s technology allows for a more personalized and customizable execution. Inventory can differ across each channel, but it is not required.

Fashion on mobile
Other fashion brands continue to find success through mobile optimization.

Chico’s FAS Inc. drove engagement for its Chico’s, White House Black Market, Soma Intimates and Boston Proper retail brands, while also raising funds for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals via a new multichannel campaign that includes a mobile-optimized microsite.

On the Send a Smile microsite as well as on the Facebook page for each brand, users can create a card that will be printed and delivered to a child being treated in a local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital. Chico’s FAS will donate $1 for every card created up to $50,000 (see story).

Mobile Commerce Daily columnist Pradeep Aradhya, CEO of NLMobile, recognizes how mobile is central to omnichannel customers.

Today’s customers are not just already omnichannel, but smartphones have completely changed their behavior and expectations.

Consumers now expect to engage at any time and from anywhere with your brand. They expect to engage before, during and after transactions with your brand. They will jump between online, in-store and mobile touch points and expect your brand to stay consistent with information, offers and service.

Marketers cannot merely worry about demand generation anymore. They must be ready for on demand (see story).

Mr. Burke agrees that the mindset of the consumer must remain as the top focus point for the brand.

“Brands are seeing at least 45 percent of traffic through mobile, and this is a phenomenon that has just occurred in the past year. Brands must always be completely aware of the buyer’s behavior.”

“For example, when a user receives a promotional email on their mobile phone, they are mostly clicking over to the site on the same device, and it’s a pain if the site isn’t mobile-optimized. These promotional emails can really drive traffic.”

Final Take
Caitlyn Bohannon, editorial assistant for Mobile Commerce Daily, New York