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  • Sephora gives shopping a makeover

    Tags: Mobile

Sephora is hoping to modernize retail with a social and mobile makeover. The beauty retailer's new platform includes a new personalized Web experience, new mobile website, an iPhone app and iOS devices in more than 100 stores, according to a company press release. Sephora is also one of the first retail brands to fully integrate with Pinterest, adding "Pin It" buttons to every product and brand page.

"Digital is a must for the future of retailing," Julie Bornstein, senior vice president, Sephora Direct, said in the release. "With the social, digital, mobile and website updates, we're giving our clients the most customizable experience in the beauty industry, and connecting clients with our experts in the ways that are most relevant to them. We're excited to makeover the future of shopping."

Sephora's website is now faster and offers the most targeted product search in the beauty category today, Bornstein said. Each product on Sephora.com has been tagged and indexed with 25 different characteristics — from relevant data like target age group, to specific ingredients, formulations, fragrance, price and more — so a client can easily find the right product.

The Sephora.com makeover also includes 80,000 additional images, product quick-views, more color views and time-saving checkout; clients can place an order in half the clicks, and in half the time.

From Sephora.com, clients can also check in-store availability for any of Sephora's more than 300 stores, create favorite product lists, learn the latest trends, get personalized advice, watch tutorials from Sephora's editors, and interact with experts instantly.

Sephora's new mobile look
Many stores have iOS devices, and as part of Sephora's mobile focus, it is testing iPads in stores. Twenty stores in the U.S. have been outfitted with iPads to give the client another way to navigate Sephora. The retailer is also distributing an iPod Touch to allow sales associates to help clients find and research products through the Sephora app, and allow for faster, mobile checkout.

"Some retailers are afraid to allow devices in their stores, but we embrace it," said Bridget Dolan, vice president, Interactive Media, Sephora. "We're bridging the online and offline world, and making it as easy as possible to find the products you want, in a way that's cool, familiar, and helpful."

Read more about customer experience.

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