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Charlotte Russe launches mobile site with Facebook integration to drive social shopping

August 13, 2012

The Charlotte Russe mobile-optimized site

Mall-based retailer Charlotte Russe is launching its first mobile-optimized site that features a strong Facebook integration to encourage social sharing and mimic the in-store shopping experience.

According to the retailer, its customers are inherently social and want to share their experiences with their friends without being limited by their location or device. The goal of the new initiative is to insure that customers never miss a promotion or a Facebook conversation related to their favorite product even if they access the brand via a smartphone.

“The Charlotte Russe girl wants seamless interaction between her real life and her life online — she is a multitasker who is social and often impulse buys,” said Anne Sophie Breuning, senior account director at Fluid Inc., San Francisco. “With 37 percent of consumers accessing social sites via mobile and 18-34 year olds being the most active users of social networks a mobile site is the perfect platform to cater to her lifestyle.

The retailer worked with digital agency Fluid to design the mobile and desktop sites.

Social shopping
While this is the retailer’s first mobile-optimized site, Charlotte Russe has been using text-to-mobile for promotions for some time.

Charlotte Russe has also updated its desktop Web site to include features such as enhanced Facebook integration. The mobile site goes live this week.

The Facebook functionality on desktop and mobile mimics the Charlotte Russe offline, in-store experience by showing a Facebook feed of other shoppers who are viewing, commenting on and buying products.

The integrated Facebook network is meant to strengthen the Charlotte Russe community of shoppers and enables conversations to unfold on the entire shopping experience.

The sites use rich, visual merchandising and is intended to engage millennial shoppers, attract new customers and drive conversions.

Meeting millennials’ needs
The retailer sells trendy, value-priced women’s apparel, shoes and accessories and operates more than 500 stores throughout 45 states and Puerto Rico.

Millennials are the most demanding digital buyers because they are technically very savvy and they have come to expect all the capabilities that come with today’s ecommerce experiences, per Fluid. Charlotte Russe is trying to deliver on those expectations by greeting online and offline consumers with a unified experience intended to ultimately increase online conversion rates and drive in-store traffic.

“The homepage of the mobile sites features a prominent search feature to support her Google-anything habit and allow her to quickly find the exact product she may have seen in the window of the store,” Ms. Breuning said. “In addition to search, the site also features easy options for filtering by color, print, size, heel shape and product price.

“The Charlotte Russe girl loves deals and everything new since last week, so secondary messages are focused on Hot Deals as well as New and Now,” she said. “The mobile site is fully commerce-enabled.”

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

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