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American Eagle Outfitters debuts mobile commerce siteBy
American Eagle Outfitters Inc. has launched a mobile commerce program to drive sales of its clothing and accessories targeting teens and twenty-somethings with Web-enabled handsets.
In addition to browsing and buying clothes and accessories, customers can now experience expanded functionality of http://www.ae.com from their mobile devices, including features such as Find a Store and Wish Lists. American Eagle tapped Usablenet to optimize its Web site for mobile devices.
“American Eagle Outfitters’ mobile strategy is designed to make our brands accessible to customers anytime, anywhere, as well as bridge the gap between online and stores,” said Mike Dupuis, vice president of marketing, digital channels, at American Eagle Outfitters, Pittsburg, PA.
“The ultimate goal is to create a seamless experience in which each channel—store, mobile and traditional online—work together to the mutual benefit of all three,” he said.
American Eagle Outfitters offers clothing, accessories and personal care products, with 954 stores in the United States and Canada.
American Eagle’s wired and mobile-optimized Web sites ship to more than 60 countries worldwide.
The brand targets 15-to-25-year-old girls and guys.
Aerie by American Eagle offers dormwear and intimates collections for girls, with 133 standalone stores in North America.
Martin + Osa provides clothing and accessories for 28-to-40-year-old men and women at its 28 stores.
The latest brand, 77kids by American Eagle, targets children ages two to 10 and is available online only at http://www.77kids.com.
Mobile devices are growing rapidly as a means for consumers to access the brands they love, particularly among AE’s target demographic of 15-to-25-year-olds.
Since Nov. 2008, American Eagle Outfitters has had an opt-in SMS texting program in which customers sign up to receive targeted messages about special offers, new product introductions and promotions on their mobile phones.
This program has been highly successful, with hundreds of thousands of customers having opted in to date, according to American Eagle.
American Eagle’s goal was to let customers experience the functionality of its wired Web site, including commerce, via their mobile phone.
Customers can look up the store nearest them and get a map and directions.
They can access Wish Lists from their mobile devices to assist with shopping in the store or purchase directly from their mobile device.
They can also email their Wish Lists directly to a parent, friend or relative.
Accessing the AE Web site from a mobile device requires no downloads or special Web address entries.
The technology detects when a customer is accessing the site from a mobile device and serves up the appropriate Web experience that is customized for whatever handset they happen to be using.
Usablenet claims that its mobile Web platform supports all Web-enabled devices, carriers, mobile browsers, screen and file sizes and technologies.
As part of its commitment to customer connection, American Eagle Outfitters will continue to pursue mobile technology advancements that enable customers to interact with its brands.
“Mobile is not just the ideal platform for American Eagle, it’s a platform that their customers are already trying to use,” said Jason Taylor, vice president of mobile products at Usablenet, New York. “Making the mobile experience successful and free of hassle for the customer has to be a primary goal if a retailer wants to open the mobile channel for business.
“Mobile commerce is becoming mainstream because people’s expectations have changed,” he said. “The consumer doesn’t think the mobile experience should be different from any other online experience or ecommerce transaction.
“It’s the retailer’s job to make that mobile experience successful in order to make money, as opposed to expecting the user to struggle through the experience on their mobile phone.”
Giselle Tsirulnik contributed reporting to this story.
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