June 21, 2011, 9:51 AM

Merchant fashions an m-commerce site with a New York flair

New York & Co. makes its mobile debut with a site optimized for busy women.

Bill Siwicki

Managing Editor, Mobile Commerce

Lead Photo

The merchant places a store locator and site search box above the fold on the home page.

Apparel and accessories retailer New York & Co. labels its fashion “polished, on-trend and versatile.” The same could be said for its new mobile commerce site, which features a polished home page filled with art, social media integration and text message functionality; follows the trend of retailers jumping into m-commerce with a site; and serves as a versatile tool for female shoppers anywhere, anytime.

“Since we are always seeking fresh opportunities to reach our customers, the launch of m-commerce was the next natural step for us,” says executive vice president and chief marketing officer Eran Cohen. “New York & Co. wants to engage with our customer however, and wherever, she wants to interact with the brand. Whether that’s through her smartphone, tablet, computer or in-store experience.”

At the top of the home page is the merchant’s logo and a tiny shopping cart that indicates how many items are within. Following that is a large promotional banner, then a larger hero shot announcing special deals. Then come—still above the fold—what experts agree are two key components of any m-commerce site: a GPS store locator and a site search box. Store locators are popular with consumers on the go who often use an m-commerce site to research and then decide to visit a store. Site search is crucial because many mobile shoppers are goal-oriented; in other words, they know what they want and want to get to it fast. The store locator and site search box appear at the top of every page other than the home page.

Ten bars, each for a different product category, fall beneath the store locator and site search box. Four smaller bars follow, for checking order status, contacting the merchant, viewing the full e-commerce site and signing up for e-mails. Then comes brief instructions to sign up via short code for text message alerts, and two icons for Facebook and Twitter activities. The four smaller bars, text message alerts and social media integration appear at the bottom of every page of the site. Product details pages feature large images and alternative images.

New York & Co. hired m-commerce technology provider Usablenet Inc. to build the site.

“As an increasing number of smartphone users rely on their mobile device to conduct product research before purchasing in-store or online, it’s essential for brands to develop an optimized presence across multiple consumer touch-points,” says Nick Taylor, president of Usablenet.

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