Branding Brand, who developed Sephora’s mobile offerings, believes that Apple’s Passbook is the new email.
“Only now you can track redemption all the way into stores,” said Chris Mason, cofounder and CEO of Branding Brand.
During the first five days of Passbook’s launch, Sephora’s iPhone app was downloaded 300,000 times and the number of Beauty Insider accounts created via mobile increased dramatically, Bornstein says. “More than 75,000 Beauty Insider cards have been added to Passbook and we expect the number of cards added to Passbook to increase as more consumers get their hands on the new iPhone5 and download iOS6,” she says.
Sephora worked with m-commerce technology provider Branding Brand on the Passbook integration.
How popular is Apple’s Passbook, the new iOS 6 application that lets you store tickets, cards, and coupons in a mobile wallet-like interface? According to some early data from Branding Brand, the company that built the app for cosmetics and skin care brand Sephora, Passbook adoption is booming.
The technology behind Color IQ is advanced, but the concept is simple: a handheld device allows Sephora makeup artists to digitally scan various spots on a customer's face, resulting in 27 images in less than two seconds. The color capture technology then assigns each person a Pantone skin-tone number, which when entered into the coinciding iPad app, brings up a list of foundations — of the more than 1,000 Sephora sells — that are the closest match for the customer's skin tone.
The top five performing mobile Web sites are American Eagle Outfitters with a score of 87, Sephora with 84.5, Crate and Barrel with 84, Nordstrom with 83.75 and REI with 83.
Sephora is one of the brands that’s leading the way in shaping digital experiences for its customers. The company recently invested in an entirely new shopping experience that integrates mobile, social and in-store activity. On this episode of Revolution, Julie Bornstein, SVP Digital at Sephora, shares with us the importance of delivering a holistic digital and “IRL” experience, while also enhancing the individual path each customer takes to engage with the brand and their favorite products.
In another effort to bridge its offline and online shopping experiences, Sephora introduced an in-store iOS initiative. The company has brought in iPod Touch devices to speed up the checkout process for consumers. Furthermore, Sephora is testing the use of iPads in multiple stores to allow consumers to interact with its menu of services, which includes the option of emailing instructions for certain makeup techniques.
“It’s a mix of, I would say, bringing great information to the consumer and also just making the shopping experience a little more seamless,” said Bornstein.
"Pinterest is a better mousetrap for those that like to socially share products," said Chris Mason, cofounder/CEO of Branding Brand. "It puts items front-and-center for admiration and the creation of lookbooks.
"In some ways, using Facebook Like is too generic compared to Pinterest’s ability to solve this specific use-case," he said. "We find that in mobile, there are many shoppers who are simply there to 'window shop,' and Pinterest does a good job of embracing that."
"The actual shopping is where it gets tricky. If an item’s original source or store is not mobilized, the experience can easily get lost when a shopper is referred over to that environment," Mr. Mason said.
"The idea is to provide a seamless brand experience that bridges the online/offline gap by using mobile devices. Sephora is an innovator in the mobile space, and this effort helps to secure its position as a leader," said Chris Mason, cofounder/CEO of Branding Brand.
"Sephora provides a clear example of how mobile can enrich shopping experiences across the board," he said. "Rather than sitting around worrying about the death of retail, brands should be asking themselves, 'how can I use these devices to bring my in-store experience to the next level?'" he said.
Beauty products retailer Sephora USA Inc. showed several new looks today, as it rolled out a new mobile site, revamped iPhone and iPad apps, and an updated e-commerce site with advanced social features.... Most of the upgrades were done in-house, with support from outside firms including mobile commerce developer Branding Brand, Bornstein says.
Unlike other stores that flinch when consumers pull out their phones, fearing that they are scanning bar codes to compare prices, the beauty supply company is embracing the practice.
...the company has seen a 300 percent increase over the past year in mobile shopping on its website.... iPad traffic to Sephora.com is up 400 percent in the first quarter over the same period last year, and 20 percent of all of the traffic to the site comes from mobile devices.
Lots of retailers are hesitant to bridge the online and offline world, Sephora Direct’s senior vice president Julie Bornstein tells Forbes. Instead, she says Sephora’s embracing it as a way to connect with customers on the devices they use most and keep them engaged and informed of trends.
The company has perfected its in-store app-powered scanning capabilities as well--its iPhone and iPad apps pull up pricing, stock, and reviews.
Digital is a huge part of Sephora’s business. The company has seen a 300% increase over the past year in mobile shopping on its website, with 70% of its mobile traffic coming from iOS devices. iPad traffic to Sephora.com is up 400% in Q1 of 2012 over the same period last year, and 20% of all of the traffic to the site comes from mobile devices.
Sephora today rolled out what it’s calling a "social and mobile makeover." The updates include a newly overhauled website with ultra specific search functionality, spruced up mobile web and iOS app, and a commitment to install iPads in more than 100 of its physical stores this year....
The iPads come with a custom Sephora app installed and give a buyer access to information such as whether a lotion gave anyone with a certain skin type a rash.
“Sephora and eBay both come to mind as marketers who really embrace mobile across multiple tactics,” said Erin O’Neil Schultz, head of industry, retail, at Google, Mountain View, CA.
She calls mobile the bridge between a rich e-commerce and in-store experience, a tool that can enrich the brick-and-mortar component to the retail equation. “[We’re] creating an ecosystem that works together to ease the consumer’s shopping experience.
Sephora uses the iPad 2's forward-facing camera to give shoppers assistance with makeup. Benefit Cosmetics uses tablets to provide billboard-like messaging in stores.
Sephora leads in mobile competence on a new ranking from digital innovation think tank L2 of 100 prestige brands. Brands across several industries were reviewed and measured based on their mobile Web sites, mobile apps, mobile marketing as well as innovation and integration.
Despite the broad admonitions, there were some standouts in the index. Beauty retailer Sephora nabbed the top spot, thanks to its robust mobile site, and apps for iPhone and iPad devices. All three feature a rich, browsable library of how-to and inspirational video content, as well tools for online and in-store shopping. The iPhone app also features a barcode scanner and interactive tool that allows users to sample various hues of nail polish.
Sephora has secured the top spot in L2's first-ever Prestige 100 Mobile IQ report. The ranking measures the mobile competence of 100 iconic prestige brands across five industries.
Sephora USA Inc.'s iPad app offers a feature impossible to duplicate on a conventional e-commerce site. The consumer activates Sephora's "mirror" feature, which uses the tablet's front-facing camera to show the consumer on the screen in one window, while in a window below she can watch a video of an expert applying makeup. The app, built by Branding Brand...
Sephora North America has debuted a fully integrated commerce-enabled iPad app that lets consumers shop its beauty products in a magazine-like format. Branding Brand developed the app for Sephora.
"This social shopping app streamlines content and commerce in one living, interactive place," says Nitin Mittal, managing partner at Branding Brand. "Leveraging HTML5, users can seamlessly engage with the app to add a new dimension to the catalog experience."
Bailey Vincent Clark, a 24-year-old writer and mother in Staunton, Va., shops on her phone for convenience, regularly buying Bare Escentuals makeup on Sephora's optimized mobile site because she can do it from anywhere, and quickly.
Now you can show the world how much you love Sephora while you’re shopping at Sephora on your iPhone!
Branding Brand built the new app as well as the m-commerce site.
The Sephora to Go mobile application melds the ease and functionality of the features available through the retailer's mobile commerce site.
Sephora used m-commerce technology vendor Branding Brand to build the Sephora Mobile site.
"The mobile Web site leverages the technology on our existing ecommerce site, and adds to it." ... Located at m.sephora.com, the program also has the ability to suggest new products based on past purchases and look up past ones.