Dialing It In

Sure, millions of consumers are already shopping 24/7 via their home and office computers, but why wait until seated at a desk when you can just dial in that order of must-have gladiator sandals from your cell phone?
Lucky Magazine kicked off a flurry of cell phone–shopping related software programs this past spring, when it launched its “Lucky At Your Service” iPhone application and shoe finder. Now, others have started to ring up sales thanks to the user-friendly advancements now available in the latest mobile phones.

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Sure, millions of consumers are already shopping 24/7 via their home and office computers, but why wait until seated at a desk when you can just dial in that order of must-have gladiator sandals from your cell phone?
Lucky Magazine kicked off a flurry of cell phone–shopping related software programs this past spring, when it launched its “Lucky At Your Service” iPhone application and shoe finder. Now, others have started to ring up sales thanks to the user-friendly advancements now available in the latest mobile phones.
Here’s but a few: Seventeen magazine and NearbyNow, a provider of digital personal shopping services, launched Seventeen Fashion Finder, an iPhone application available for free via iTunes for the iPhone and iPod Touch. The Finder features fashion and accessories considered the season’s must-haves, allowing users to search by product (i.e. jeans, tops, bags, shoes), trend (rocker, boho, classic, girly) or price point. The application then checks availability and reserves the products in nearby stores.
ShopSavvy scans a product’s barcode through one’s phone camera, revealing other local and online outlets that carry the product and for how much. The user can then either request that the product be held for local pickup or have it delivered by mail. ShopStyle.com’s iPhone app allows users to search and compare prices on their favorite online fashion boutiques. This app links directly to the particular item’s e-commerce page for purchase.
And finally, shoppers at Lombardi Sports’ San Francisco location can receive discount and incentive mobile coupons on a range of Nike products by sending a text. They can also forward the savings offer by texting it to friends. The year-old Lombardi Sports Mobile Club, powered by mobile marketing and commerce solution provider Print2Click, has been well received as customers have savings in hand at any time and are saved the hassle of having to remember to bring in their coupons.
While mobile commerce is still in its rotary phone stage—Nielsen research reports that of the 45 million U.S. cell phone users who take advantage of their phone’s Internet connection, just 6.4 million bought something through their phones in 2009—consumers are just now catching the cellular shopping bug. According to a Forbes report, retailers are realizing that mobile phone applications not only draw in more customers, they also raise brand awareness.
Looks like it’s only a matter of time before “ringing the register” has a whole other meaning.
 
 

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