Nordstrom lags behind with mobile-optimized site- Luxury Daily

Posted on July 20, 2011

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nordstrom-mobile-1851Department store chain Nordstrom has finally released its optimized site, but with competitors at an advantage by using multiple mobile offerings, is it too little, too late?

Except for a recent foray into mobile checkout, Nordstrom has not been available to its customers via mobile. However, consumers can now shop and buy the retailer’s products via smartphone.

“For the largest customer interaction, it is normally smarter to start with the mobile Web,” said Steve Timpson, president of SiteMinis, Atlanta.

“Most companies do not possess the core competency internally to execute great mobile experiences at the start,” he said. “Always, always, always think of the user first.”

Mr. Timpson is not affiliated with Nordstrom, but agreed to comment as an industry expert.

On the heels
Nordstrom is following other department store chain rivals such as Bloomingdale’s, Neiman Marcus and Barneys New York which have been using mobile for some time now.

The landing page focuses on the top trends or promotions, which are mirrored on Nordstrom’s Web site page.

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The mobile landing page

Consumers can search for products or browse through items via department or brand.

The departments are divided into men, women, children, juniors, designer collections, baby & kids, shoes, handbags and accessories, beauty and fragrance, at home and gifts, sale and wedding.

Consumers can look at products from brands such as Marc Jacobs, Dolce & Gabbana, Eli Tahari, Burberry, Michael Kors and Elizabeth and James.

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Brands on the Nordstrom site

Users can also check out “our stores” for the nearest events and, hours and locations.

Returning consumers can look into their accounts for past purchases and to redeem deals.

Nordstrom links its Facebook and Twitter accounts at the bottom of the page that connect to optimized versions of the retailer’s social media pages.

Home work, not home run
Although a mobile site is a good stepping stone into the medium, Nordstrom still has some work to do, per Mr. Timpson.

“From the standpoint that having a workable presence in the mobile space is important to engaging consumers, the site adds value versus having nothing,” Mr. Timpson said.

“On the other hand, it is important to really think through what the consumer interaction with the brand is at any level, including mobile.”

Now that Nordstrom has entered the arena, it can focus on other mobile offerings such as branded applications and SMS and MMS messaging.

Other luxury department stores use QR codes to engage consumers (see story).

“It should get some more professional mobile help,” Mr. Timpson said. “Some real thought should be put into the user experience and how the brand is revealed.

“This is important to a brand, especially a high-end brand such as Nordstrom,” he said. “Overall, I give them kudos for going mobile, but poor marks for the user output of their brand engagement to their customers.”

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