8 Brands Delivering Great Mobile Experiences

Home Depot, Wal­greens, Sepho­ra, and Mer­cedes-Benz are among the brands with the best mobile expe­ri­ences, accord­ing to a new report.

Lisa Lacy By Lisa Lacy. Join the discussion » 0 comments

Home Depot, Wal­greens, and Mer­cedes-Benz are among the brands with the best mobile expe­ri­ences. That’s accord­ing to busi­ness intel­li­gence ser­vice L2, which says it bench­marks the dig­i­tal com­pe­tence of brands. Here’s who made L2’s list and why.

Home Depot

L2 says Home Depot pro­vides its app users with access to real-time local store inven­to­ry and allows cus­tomers to scan items in-store to also find them online. In addi­tion, the app’s “In-Store Expe­ri­ence” uti­lizes geolo­ca­tion to pro­vide store-spe­cif­ic maps, the cat­a­log can be sort­ed to dis­play only prod­ucts avail­able in spe­cif­ic stores and users can swipe to add prod­ucts to shop­ping lists.

This depth of fusion is rare in retail and embod­ies the per­fect way to keep con­sumers informed, sat­is­fied and return­ing,” L2 says.

Accord­ing to Home Depot, con­sumers can access more than 700,000 prod­ucts with its app and they can also see how to prod­ucts will look in their homes using aug­ment­ed real­i­ty.

Per Google Play, the Home Depot app has between 1 mil­lion and 5 mil­lion installs.


Accord­ing to the report, an esti­mat­ed 55 per­cent of Wal­greens shop­pers use its app in-store.

The app also sup­ports the brand’s Bal­ance Rewards pro­gram, which had 100 mil­lion mem­bers as of May 2014. The loy­al­ty pro­gram also includes mobile coupons. When a loy­al­ty card is scanned at the reg­is­ter, any applic­a­ble clipped coupons are auto­mat­i­cal­ly applied to the customer’s order, L2 says.

The brand has also inte­grat­ed its app with iOS Pass­book, which Apple says helps users keep coupons, loy­al­ty cards, board­ing pass­es, movie tick­ets and the like in one place.

What’s more, Wal­greens began pilot­ing iBea­con tech­nol­o­gy, which pro­vides loca­tion-based infor­ma­tion and ser­vices to iOS devices, at select stores in May 2014. Wal­greens uses the tech­nol­o­gy to send push noti­fi­ca­tions with shop­ping lists, coupons and prod­uct sug­ges­tions based on cus­tomers’ past pur­chas­es. And, per the report, shop­pers tar­get­ed by the iBea­con were 17 times more like­ly to use the app.

Wal­greens is also test­ing 3D vir­tu­al real­i­ty store map­ping with part­ner Aisle411, which allows con­sumers to search a store’s in-app map to find spe­cif­ic prod­ucts with coupon, spe­cial offers and reward point inte­gra­tions.

Wal­greens says its app also includes a Refill by Scan fea­ture that allows cus­tomers to scan bar­codes on their pre­scrip­tions, as well as pill reminders and pho­to print­ing fea­tures.


Per the report, mobile dri­ves half of online traf­fic and email opens for the beau­ty brand and Sephora’s Sepho­ra to Go app is a “best-in-class exam­ple of cross-plat­form loy­al­ty club imple­men­ta­tion which also incor­po­rates omnichan­nel strat­e­gy.”

Sephora’s apps let its Beau­ty Insid­er loy­al­ty pro­gram mem­bers see their offers and rewards. L2 says the pro­gram also helps con­sumers man­age pre­vi­ous pur­chas­es, sam­pling his­to­ry and wish­list items. Beau­ty Insid­er also helps Sepho­ra track pur­chas­es across chan­nels.

In addi­tion, the Beau­ty Bag fea­ture helps con­sumers remem­ber favorite brands and shades. Sam­ples are also tracked to encour­age cus­tomers to revis­it and pur­chase full-size prod­ucts, L2 says.

For its part, Sepho­ra says the iPhone app allows cus­tomers to scan prod­ucts in store to read reviews, as well as to access pho­to edit­ing tools and fil­ters for the Beau­ty Board, a social shop­ping plat­form that allows fans to upload pho­tos of them­selves.

Starwood Hotels and Resorts

Starwood’s mobile loy­al­ty app has basic loy­al­ty func­tions, but “rais­es the bar…with ele­gant solu­tions such as lever­ag­ing its saved pro­file in tan­dem with native geo-local func­tion­al­i­ty to com­plete local book­ings with­out any data entry,” L2 says.

What’s more, Star­wood allows loy­al­ty club mem­bers who have con­firmed book­ings through the app to check in and access rooms with their mobile devices and some prop­er­ties are even test­ing key­less check-in tech­nol­o­gy. The brand plans to intro­duce a vir­tu­al key to 150 prop­er­ties in 2015, L2 says.

L’Oréal Paris

Accord­ing to L2, L’Oreal Paris “trans­lates its con­tent seam­less­ly to mobile devices.”

That’s because con­sumers access guid­ed sell­ing tools, curat­ed con­tent and tuto­ri­als that blend con­tent and com­merce as the brand makes sure the cus­tomer jour­ney is nev­er frag­ment­ed and always leads to prod­uct, L2 says.

Fur­ther, L2 says L’Oreal “knocked the ball out of the park” with its Make­up Genius app, which allows users to try on prod­ucts via aug­ment­ed real­i­ty and has been down­loaded more than 1.7 mil­lion times.

This tech­nol­o­gy [in Make­up Genius] is tru­ly unique — it’s the same stuff used in Ben­jamin But­ton, allow­ing Brad Pitt to age back­wards from an old man to a young boy,” L’Oreal says in a post on its web­site.

Tory Burch

Tory Burch’s Tory Dai­ly app opens to the Tory Dai­ly blog and inte­grates the ecom­merce site through “per­sis­tent nav­i­ga­tion, avoid­ing the bifur­cat­ed or seg­re­gat­ed site expe­ri­ence that is observed with blogs across many peers,” L2 notes. In addi­tion, blog entries are linked to prod­uct pages.

L2 says the appar­el brand’s Tory’s Gift Guide is “an exam­ple of rich con­tent that moves the con­sumer down the pur­chase fun­nel, both online and offline.”

Prod­uct pages allow con­sumers to buy online or find prod­ucts in-store with real-time in-store inven­to­ry. In addi­tion, the tablet site sup­ports sea­son­al look books, which allow con­sumers to shop out­fits by click­ing on “Add All to Bag” but­tons.

The iPhone app also includes fil­ters and frames for Insta­gram and Face­book.


The auto brand’s U.S. site is built in HTML5, which sup­ports touch and swipe ges­tures on mobile devices, L2 says. It also allows con­tent to be opti­mized for a range of device sizes and ori­en­ta­tions.

What’s more, the brand’s mobile-opti­mized con­tent gives con­sumers access to tools like request­ing quotes, esti­mat­ing pay­ments, and apply­ing for cred­it. And site fea­tures like links to deal­er sites, offers, con­fig­u­ra­tors and live chat, which help dri­ve con­sumers to pur­chase, are also main­tained in con­tent accessed from mobile devices, L2 adds.

Physicians Formula

Accord­ing to L2, cos­met­ics brand Physi­cians For­mu­la “emerged as a leader in respon­sive site design” in 2014 thanks to a design that shares HTML5 code and dig­i­tal assets across desk­top, tablet and mobile and cre­ates a cohe­sive user expe­ri­ence on each.

The site is designed for prod­uct research and dis­cov­ery and uses a flu­id grid for gallery prod­uct pages to opti­mize screen size and ori­en­ta­tion, L2 says. Physi­cians For­mu­la has also imple­ment­ed touch and swipe sup­port and menus are mobile-opti­mized.

Lisa Lacy

Written by Lisa Lacy

Lisa is a senior features writer for Inked. She also previously covered digital marketing for Incisive Media. Her background includes editorial positions at Dow Jones, the Financial Times, the Huffington Post, AOL, Amazon, Hearst, Martha Stewart Living and the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund.

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