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Dover Saddlery spurs sales with mobile commerce

February 25, 2011

Dover Saddlery harnesses the mobile Web to drive sales

Multichannel retailer Dover Saddlery Inc. has launched a commerce-enabled mobile Web site to increase its consumer touch points and boost sales of its equestrian products.

Dover Saddlery and its subsidiary Smith Brothers have partnered with Unbound Commerce Inc. to power the mobile site at The retailer is attempting to capitalize on the surge in purchasing by consumers via smartphones. 

Mobile Commerce Daily’s Dan Butcher interviewed Wilson Kerr, director of business development and sales at Unbound Commerce, Boston. Here is what he had to say:

What is Dover Saddlery’s strategy behind the partnership with Unbound Commerce and the launch of the mobile Web site?
The mobile initiative is an extension of Dover Saddlery’s ongoing efforts differentiate via a high level of customer service.

Its goal was to give Dover’s mobile customers a way to buy when the need arises and to convert mobile-originating site traffic into incremental sales.

Dover CEO Stephen Day said that the retailer’s customers are active people – in the stable and the field or at horse shows. He said that by being more convenient, by providing anytime-anywhere service, Dover can capitalize on mobile’s unique ability to serve our customers whenever and wherever they have a need.

Dover chose Unbound because our approach provides a framework for on-going enhancements via further integration with Dover’s ecommerce systems.

What is the mobile payment mechanism?
Unbound’s strength is integrating with a client’s current ecommerce infrastructure.

Because Dover uses PayPal as an option for checkout, this was the solution they went with for mobile in the first iteration.

The next phase will provide additional checkout options, and this element will continue to evolve.

We are rolling out PayPal Express Checkout in the next 30 days for our clients, and this should significantly improve conversion rates.

What is the target demographic?
It is Dover’s customers, most of which own smartphones.

Since a recent survey showed that 62 percent have purchased physical goods via their smartphone in the last six months and two-thirds favor a mobile browser over an app for commerce, we are at an inflection point. Dover saw this and wanted to capitalize.

How will Dovery Saddlery get the word out about this new mobile shopping site?
While we hope all clients promote their mobile site, the beauty of launching mobile-optimized site is that it creates a profoundly different customer experience for mobile visitors linking through current marketing campaigns.

This eliminates the “pinch and zoom fatigue” associated with a standard site that keeps mobile-originating site traffic artificially low.

Consumers make note of their ability to purchase easily via mobile. Dover just launched its mobile commerce site, and it is already generating revenue.

What challenges does Unbound Commerce address for Dover Saddlery?
We allow Dover to sell to their customers in a real-world context.

When its customers see a need for a product when they are riding or at a horse show or working outdoors, they can act upon that impulse effectively and place an order right them and there.

We helped Dover to refine and complete its requirements and implement the mobile site based on its current online assets.

Key for Dover in the short term was to deliver on its vision without disrupting its operations. 

The retailer did not want to reinvent the wheel and wanted mobile to be a critical and distinct customer experience.

Our approach of driving the mobile experience based on what powers Dover’s main site is what the retailer was looking for.

Final Take
Adam Shapiro

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Dan Butcher is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach him at

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