October 28, 2011, 2:10 PM

Lands’ End looks to expand in Germany

With a new German web site, it plans more social, mobile and cross-channel retailing.

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Wisconsin-based Lands’ End has built a stronger foothold in Germany.

The recently relaunched LandsEnd.de is designed to better engage online shoppers while also complementing efforts to expand through mobile commerce, social media and cross-channel store-and-online retailing, says Bob McElroy, senior vice president, international.

Lands’ End, a Sears Holdings Corp. brand and retailer of apparel, home furnishings and other products, relaunched its German site, LandsEnd.de, last month on a software-as-a-service platform from Demandware Inc. Lands’ End says it will use the Demandware platform to develop new sites as well as relaunch old ones as it builds out its online presence in Europe.

“Our new Demandware site will allow for a significantly better customer experience both visually and functionally,” McElroy says. “With the new functionality we will present products with more rich media, and grow our existing social media fan base. The new platform puts us significantly ahead of where we have been at a time when our customers are asking for more digital contact options.”

Among the new site’s features are multiple payment options favored by German online consumers. Lands’ End also plans to introduce in the near term Demandware’s multi-currency and multi-language features, McElroy says.

The new e-commerce platform, which Lands’ End first tested last year on a new site for Sweden, se.landsend.com also supports mobile commerce and cross-channel store-and-online order management, McElroy says.

For now, Lands’ End operates a single bricks-and-mortar store in Germany in Mettlach, where its German online operation is based. But the new e-commerce platform will support cross-channel inventory and order management to support shopping across online and offline channels, McElroy says. Lands’ End operates a single warehouse in Europe, which it recently expanded; it also has an option to expand the warehouse as the need arises, McElroy says.

He didn’t specify what plans Lands’ End may have for expanding its bricks-and-mortar presence in Germany. But when asked if the new LandsEnd.de would support a cross-channel offline/online shopping experience and cross-channel inventory and fulfillment management, he said: “Our new platform will help us to deliver on these options and plans.”

Lands’ End has ambitious plans to expand its mobile commerce presence in Europe, as well as in other areas, McElroy says. “Mobile is absolutely on the radar as a meaningful contributor to our overall strategy,” he says. “We are currently testing a few different options in locations around the globe and will land on a solution in the near term.”

Lands’ End also plans to use the Demandware platform to relaunch its e-commerce sites in the United Kingdom, Austria and France, as well as possibly develop new sites in markets yet to be named, the company says.

Sears is No 7 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide

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