August 13, 2013, 3:30 PM

Apparel retailer Everlane launches fashions on its new mobile site before desktop

The retailer is promoting its new mobile site, its CEO says.

Lead Photo

A screenshot of Everlane's mobile site with the Ryan Collection.

Web-only seller of designer fashion items Everlane.com this week gave consumers who accessed its new mobile site early access to a new collection of women’s shirts. On Friday, Aug. 9, Everlane sent an e-mail to more than 250,000 women notifying them that the Ryan Collection would launch on the mobile site first. The move was an effort to drive traffic and sales to the just-launched m-commerce site, says CEO and founder Michael Preysman. The collection went live on the retailer’s desktop site today.

“We wanted to promote the new design and ease of checkout to our customers,” Preysman says. “Given that almost 40% of our e-mails are opened on mobile, we thought this would be a great tie in.”

Preysman says Everlane’s mobile sales typically increase when the retailer sends e-mails. He says many shoppers open messages on their smartphones and that drives traffic to the site. He says as many as one-third of purchases stem from mobile devices on the days Everlane sends e-mails.

“The old site was not usable on mobile; it was very hostile,” Preysman says. Before the redesign, Everlane’s mobile shoppers—the majority of whom were using iPhones—were not able to use all the features on the desktop site like the hover, which changes a product thumbnail image to a close-up when a shopper is hovering over it with a computer cursor, and the drop-down menus were difficult to navigate on a small screen, he says.

On the mobile site, which Everlane built in-house, a shopper selects either “women” or “men” at the top, and an array of images for each product category, such as Tees, Silk Blouse and Summer Sandal, appears beneath.  Shoppers can tap each image to go to a product page, from which they can select color and size, read more information and tap to add to their shopping bags or to check out.

Other retailers have also been promoting mobile-specific deals this summer. Gilt Groupe, for example, is offering summer flash sales exclusively to shoppers on its mobile site and apps from June 22 through August 24.

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