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Lord & Taylor, Hudson’s Bay drive mcommerce sales from print circulars

January 24, 2014

Hudson's Bay Co. is partnering with the Pounce app

The Lord & Taylor and Hudson’s Bay department stores are leveraging a mobile application to enable customers to purchase items directly from print media via their tablets and smartphones.

Customers who download the Pounce app and scan items appearing in the retailers’ print circulars, direct mail and ads will be able to purchase the items in just a few clicks. With print media still an important marketing channel for merchants, the strategy was designed to meet the needs of smartphone-wielding consumers who want to purchase instantly.

“An app like Pounce allows customers to quickly take an image shot of whatever they enjoy in the circular or the direct mail or the ROP and quickly check out and experience a mobile ecommerce shopping experience,” said Ryan Craver, senior vice president of corporate strategy for the department stores group at The Hudson’s Bay Co., Toronto.

“As we think about our customers and every time that they are coming across the Bay or they are coming across Lord & Taylor, we need to be able to provide them the most seamless, convenient shopping experience, and I think Pounce is just another way to do that,” he said.

Mobilizing print
Lord & Taylor and Hudson’s Bay each launched mobile Web sites late last year. Both also have apps for iOS and Android.

The retailers’ parent company, The Hudson’s Bay Company, partnered with Pounce to bring a mobile element to its print strategy.

Opening the Pounce app automatically brings up a phone’s camera function, enabling users to scan a direct mailer or other nearby print collateral. This automatically populates a list of the individual items being scanned. Users then click on a specific product that they are interested in, enter their size and the quantity and then press checkout.

The image is linked directly to a retailer’s inventory and pricing information, enabling users to make a purchase directly from a retailer.

Easy checkout
First time users must then enter billing, shipping and credit card information to complete a purchase. Return users can check out with just one click.

Print materials will feature the Pounce logo and inform users that they can download the app, scan an image and check out.

To support the launch, the app is being featured in ads appearing in bus stations and elsewhere around Toronto for The Hudson’s Bay Co.’s Sochi 2014 Olympic apparel. Hudson’s Bay is the official apparel sponsor of the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Teams for the Sochi 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

Pounce also works with a retail affiliate program for retailers such as Macy’s, Target, Best Buy, Ace Hardware, Toys ‘R’ Us and Babies ‘R’ Us.

The program points to how retailers are looking to mobile to boost their print circular strategies.

There are a number of examples of digital circulars being pushed out to mobile. For example, Retale is positioning itself as a mobile centralized source for retail circulars, with Macy’s, Target, Kohl’s and others already onboard (see story).  Find & Save from Wanderful Media offers a similar solution (see story).

“The relationship between HBC and Pounce is a partnership, while the relationship with Macy’s is an affiliate based program,” said Avital Yachin, the CEO of Pounce.

“The meaning of the partnership is a deeper integration across various marketing channels that will result in larger usage and conversion rates,” he said. “Such integration includes placing call-to-action in the flyers and outdoor ads, online campaigns and more.

“In addition, HBC will get access to extended analytics data leveraging the information from their circulars/print ads.”

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

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