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Jo-Ann rounds out mobile strategy with optimized site

Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store has introduced a mobile-optimized Web site to enhance the shopping experience for on-the-go and in-store mobile users this holiday season.

Any visitor to the Web site from a smartphone will be automatically redirected to the mobile-friendly site. The mobile site complements the retail chain’s existing apps for the iPhone, iPad and Android devices.

“Mobile will play a bigger role than ever in terms of providing our customer the most convenient options for her to engage with us over the holidays,” said Bryan Kipp, director of marketing at Jo-Ann Stores, Hudson, OH.

“The retailers that provide the best possible experience, whether in-store or online, will be the clear winners,” he said. “Smartphone penetration in the U.S. recently surpassed 50 percent, and as we see increasing mobile-sourced traffic to, we’ll be fully prepared to deliver on our promise to provide her with a best-in-class engagement experience.

A robust mobile strategy
The mobile site features the craft chain’s top offers via a rotating carousel on the home page.

From here, users can tap to shop by category, view weekly flyers and a store locator.

Additionally, users can view any coupons or special offers and access Jo-Ann’s social communities on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram.

Users can also sign up to receive email promotions from the retailer on the mobile site.

Retailers such as Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store are gearing up for the holiday shopping season by enhancing their mobile strategies, as mobile use is expected to increase significantly this year.

Jo-Ann’s mobile site joins its smartphone apps, which provide exclusive coupons, a Find a Store feature and the ability to browse products.

An app for the iPad was launched in July and offers an interactive collection of craft ideas, projects and how-to’s. The Jo-Ann app for iPad also enables customers to browse weekly ads and catalogs, create a shopping list and find the Jo-Ann store nearest them.

Making good decisions
On-the-go consumers will be using their smartphones for a variety of shopping related activities this holiday season, including looking for deals, researching gift ideas and making purchases.

Mobile users are also expected to leverage their devices while they are inside stores to compare prices and access product reviews.

“It’s not just about generating revenue anymore,” Mr. Kipp said. “It’s about giving the customer the information she needs to make good decisions – whether it’s to give her easy access to product information including ratings and reviews; more detailed store information including maps, directions, hours and class schedules; or finding the best deals in real time by accessing the digital versions of our direct mail pieces and newspaper inserts.”

“Complementing our recent mobile Web project, we also have a very popular mobile app with more than one million downloads, an iPad app that focuses on inspiration and project ideas, and an extremely-popular SMS program that has been in place for a little over a year,” he said.

Final Take
Chantal Tode is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York