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1800Flowers mobile efforts are focused on sales and conversion

NEW YORK - A 1800Flowers executive at the Mobile Shopping Summit said that the company is focused on enhancing its mobile strategy to drive more sales and get the conversion rate up.

The executive talked about how the company got into the mobile space and its plans to advance in the medium. In addition to extending its mobile site and application to other platforms, 1800Flowers is looking to release an iPad application that features its print catalog.

?With mobile, it?s been a great story for us,? said Kevin Ranford, vice president of online marketing and social media at 1800Flowers, New York. ?We?ve had a little bit of everything ? mobile site, SMS, applications.

?Our roadmap is aggressive,? he said. ?We?re heading up on user interface and experience and there?s a ton more to come.

?It?s not a one silver bullet situation ? it comes down to conversion for us, we just have to get that sale.?

Mobile flowers
There are several trends driving mobile commerce, according to Mr. Ranford.

There is external critical mass, where there is a consumer shift from feature phones to smartphones; internal critical mass where the marketing spend in the mobile channel rapidly rises and ecosystem critical mass where the innovation in the mobile ecosystem is exploding. 

?There should be ubiquity,? Mr. Ranford said. ?Consumers want to order where they are, when they want and using the means they choose to.

?Companies should have a broad mobile strategy,? he said ?Let the customer decide what mobile device they most prefer using rather than only launch on one device.

?Include both Web and mobile apps in your strategy.?

Mobile swag[g]
1800Flowers is one of Swagg?s launch partners where it will offer mobile gift cards and discounts to consumers.

The Swagg application launches on Nov. 14.

Mr. Ranford said that the application is going to be perfect for holidays such as Thanksgiving, Christmas and Mother?s Day. 

?It?s about creating a mobile shopping experience for your customers,? Mr. Ranford said. ?Swagg helps get more people to us.?

The company is also looking to extend its print catalog specifically to the iPad and extending its mobile site and application to Windows 7 and Sprint ID.

?What we?re doing with mobile acquisition marketing is that we?re looking at ways to optimize our mobile search and getting that traffic in,? Mr. Ranford said. ?We?ve got to get this email experience optimized for mobile users.

?We?ve been doing three big email sends a week and the offers change consistently.?

Mobile ads
Banner ads are another way for the company to drive traffic to its mobile site.

Mr. Ranford that that incentives are key to driving consumers in-store.

The company had a banner ad featured in AP?s iPhone application where it offered consumers 15 percent of their purchase.

In addition, 1800Flowers is running ads in the Pandora application where there is an audio offer tied in as well.

?Mobile is a consistently strong growth channel,? Mr. Ranford said. ?You have to try and test.

?We?re not trying to reinvent the wheel, we?re just doing what works for us,? he said.