The decision to invest in a retail app is often debated by ecommerce teams.
The perks? An app is the best way build loyalty and engage your most valuable customers. The dealbreaker is that most retailers don’t know what value to deliver beyond basic ecommerce functionality. What additional features can they build to make their app stick with shoppers?
Heidi Zak, Co-Founder of ThirdLove, is leveraging a native app to solve a pain point for her shoppers. By understanding her target demographic really well, and identifying a gap in her industry, the app has become successful in driving value to shoppers, and, in turn, mobile revenue.
Heidi will be sharing her story at Shop.org in her session “How Boxed Wholesale and ThirdLove are Dominating Mobile,” but we sat down with her to give you a sneak peek into her mobile strategy.
Mobify: What opportunity did you see in the market when founding ThirdLove?
Heidi: ThirdLove is changing the game in a $110 billion industry affecting all women.
Over the past 20 years, we’ve seen a shift in the lingerie market when it comes to what women want. Women want a bra that’s not only beautiful, but also fits perfectly and feels great throughout the day. We’re bringing form and function together in a way that hasn’t been done before.
The lingerie industry currently sizes bras based off of a single fit model. Instead of using standard industry measurements, we use thousands of real women’s measurements to create products that fit women – ALL women – better.
Finally, we created patented technology that lets you find your perfect size at home – no awkward measuring or dressing room moments required. It’s as simple as our iPhone app, and it’s empowered thousands of women to become better bra shoppers.
Mobify: What’s driving your motivation to invest in mobile? What mobile behaviors are you seeing with Millennials that’s supporting your investments?
Heidi: What young people want today is convenience. They’ve grown up in a world where everything comes to them. But beyond Millennials, we’ve seen huge traction with our mobile app with the 40 to 60-year-old segment too. Over 85% of our sales are mobile-influenced, via our app or mobile web.
Our users tell us they love the mobile app because of the convenience and the privacy – you can purchase from the comfort of your own home within minutes. Women who interact with our sizing technology or online fit finder convert at an 8x higher rate than other potential customers.
Mobify: Why did you decide to invest in a native app versus mobile web?
Heidi: Our website is certainly optimized for mobile, but we wouldn’t be able to offer the sizing functionality via mobile web – that was something we had to develop ourselves, in a standalone app. It was a worthy investment. Over a third of our customers use our sizing technology.
Mobify: What companies do you look to for inspiration – who is doing it right?
Heidi: In the start-up world, I think the Honest Company has done a fantastic job with their branding, marketing and product development. And I love that Jessica Alba is a mom like me, and has shown that you can build a big business that positively impacts women, all while raising a family.
Nordstrom is an example of a traditional retailer that has done a great job of integrating the latest technologies and new brands into its portfolio, and is trying to integrate the best of offline and online shopping across mediums.
Mobify: 85% of time spent on a smartphone is generally spent in the same 4 to 5 apps. Who are you competing against for your customer’s attention and how do you ensure that your customers are staying engaged?
Heidi: Our customers are extremely loyal. We’ve also filled our (newly updated!) mobile app with tons of great content about how your bra should fit, what styles are best for what shapes, and more in our “Bra 101” section.
Mobify: Have you noticed an influence from technology giants (Google, Apple, Facebook, etc.) on your customers’ shopping behavior? How do you equip yourself to adapt quickly to changing customer behavior?
Heidi: Of course! That’s what I love the most about building a direct-to-consumer online business – the changing landscape within the broader technology and advertising industries.
We are a beta partner with many of the tech companies to help test and launch new features. For example, we were a featured shopping app when Apple first launched Apple Pay. Our team is small and nimble which makes it easy to move quickly to respond to any new advertising opportunities.
If you are interested in learning more, check-out the full Shop.org agenda. Mobify will be sharing insights on how to stay nimble with mobile and keep up with customer expectations at booth 3071.