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DSW leverages growing mobile traffic with new mcommerce site

August 4, 2011

The DSW mobile Web site

DSW is improving its mobile experience with a new mcommerce-enabled site that lets consumers make purchases and redeem loyalty points. 

The shoe retailer previously had a mobile-optimized version of its Web site. However, with the amount of traffic coming from mobile doubling in the past year, DSW realized it was time for a bigger commitment to the space.

“With the amount that mobile traffic is increasing to our Web site we felt it was critical to launch a mobile site that would improve the experience for our customers,” said Roger Rawlins, senior vice president and general manager of, Columbus, OH.

“This is really about improving the multichannel experience as we’ve found that a lot of people are in the store using the Web site to search for product or are looking for a store through a mobile device,” he said.

“Our focus has been on improving the mobile experience from what it issued to be and the goals are to get them to product quicker, get them to their rewards account faster than in the past and provide access to store locations.”

DSW is a leading branded footwear and accessories retailer. It operates 319 stores in 39 states and supplies footwear to 352 leased locations.

A rewarding experience
The mobile storefront enables customers to shop, make purchases and find a store.

More than 15 percent of the traffic to DSW’s Web site currently comes from mobile.

By creating a separate platform for a mobile site, the retailer can start to look at other areas mobile going forward.

“We now have the ability to layer apps and other technology on top to provide a lot of functionality that we probably could not have created with the way the old site was structured,” Mr. Rawlins said.

Users can purchase products via the mobile site using their credit cards.

DSW’s 17 million rewards members can also view their loyalty points balance, any available certificates and redeem offers via the site.

“Over 80 percent of our volume comes from rewards members,” Mr. Rawlins said. “We want to provide those folks access to their rewards balance, available certificates and offers in a much quicker way.”

Mobile enhancements
DSW is already looking at some ways to enhance the mobile site.

Plans call for adding functionality that will enable users to see which products are available at a nearby store.

Currently, the site presents what is available on

“We want to leverage the site to generate a multichannel business opportunity,” Mr. Rawlins said.

DSW is also actively working on developing apps that will be launching in the coming months.

“This is about creating this platform to place apps on and capitalize on the existing traffic to the site and drive multichannel experiences,” he said.

The new mobile site will initially be promoted through email.

Beginning this fall, messaging around the mobile site will be integrated into DSW’s print and digital media communications, including package inserts and paid search.

The mobile Web site is compatible with smartphones and other mobile devices.

Consumers can access the mobile site by entering on their mobile browser.

“I think the sky’s the limit on where mobile traffic will be heading in the next couple of years and we wanted a tool that would take advantage of that traffic,” Mr. Rawlins said.

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

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