December 27, 2011, 9:42 AM

The best of e-commerce in m-commerce mirrored select features in a mobile redesign.

Lead Photo

The redesign of the mobile commerce site is paying off. Sales are up and shoppers are spending 25% more time on the site.

The mobile commerce site of Inc. used to be based on a model common in m-commerce. The home page featured a list of bars with product category names or links to special sections, and from there customers would drill down through sub-categories to product pages. But this year the e-retailer, No. 77 in the Internet Retailer Mobile Commerce Top 300, decided it wanted its mobile site to reflect its e-commerce site in certain ways, so it undertook a redesign.

And it’s working. Since September when it launched the redesigned mobile commerce site, cart abandonment is down, conversion is up, sales are up and shoppers are spending 25% more time on the new site compared with the previous version, the merchant reports.

“Integrating relevant critical functionality from a company’s e-commerce site into a mobile offering is something mobile-savvy shoppers have come to expect from their preferred retailers,” says Kevin Ranford, vice president of online marketing, mobile and social media. “Our new mobile site was about building an experience that helps catalyze a positive outcome for our customers whether they are looking to find a quick gift or check the status of an existing order.”

For the new version, picked some key e-commerce features to recreate on the m-commerce site. One was Find a Gift Fast, which appears in a colorful box about halfway down the home page. This feature requires a shopper to enter only her ZIP code, select an occasion from a pop-up dial and select the delivery date from a pop-up dial, then press Go. The site displays a page of results that fit her needs.

Another feature brought over from the e-commerce site during the redesign was the Delivery Calendar. When a shopper touches the delivery button on a product page, a window pops up that shows the next four weeks in traditional calendar format with shipping styles and prices for upcoming dates. This saves entering a date into a field to then see shipping options on subsequent pages.

Overall, the home page is more like the e-commerce site home page, featuring a more colorful and elegant design than the previous mobile site’s home page, which was primarily a list of category bars. The new home page features a series of large rotating hero shots. Above them is the site search box, along with rounded tabs for logging in to an account and viewing how many items are in a shopping cart. Below the hero shots is a Categories section, which features links to 10 product areas. Below that is Find a Gift Fast, then Feature Collections, which are highlighted by images. used mobile commerce technology provider Moovweb to redesign the site.

“Our mobile shoppers are enjoying a more intuitive shopping experience,” Ranford says, “increased access to similar functionality to that of our desktop experience, and easier ability to find promotional offers they may have seen via our marketing efforts.”

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