In 2013, when we started developing our platform, we chose to develop our first apps for iOS only as this is where we saw most mobile commerce taking place. Early in 2016, we added Android. Even though in e-commerce iOS is still dominant, Android has come a long way. Not just in customer reach but also in quality of the operating system. So last April we launched Android and it’s getting great results for our customers.
Android is adding significant business.
Since we released Android this spring, nearly all our clients have released their Android shopping app. And the results are great too: we see Android revenue shares of over 25% for some brands already and it is growing every month. Just as with the iOS app we are continuously improving the Android app.
Things are getting personal.
Mobile devices are very personal devices. We use our phones all day every day and store our lives on them. At the same time, retail brands know that app customers are your most loyal customers. Combine the two and it’s clear that the next wave of mobile retail is going to be about making things personal. To be able to do this we need to know who is shopping. And for that, we needed Accounts to be a native part of Highstreet.
Sending relevant push notifications has always been a great way to engage customers and keep them up to date on a brand’s news and offers. Since Apple released iOS 10, this became even better. We embraced this feature right from the start and gave brands the opportunity to promote their categories, products, and lookbooks right from the lock screen by adding large imagery and product information into the push notification.Read more
Branded content seamlessly integrated
As a SaaS platform we run one code-base for all brands. This allows us to innovate and improve quickly. However, at the same time we want to offer the brands we work for unique ways to engage their customers. That’s why we designed a solution that offers new ways to integrate engaging custom content independently in the Highstreet apps. Scotch & Soda is the first brand to use this new solution for their Misguiding Guide of Amsterdam.
It’s about the (product) details (view)
Perfection is our goal. That’s why we keep working on important sections of our app. This year, we have updated our iPhone detail view - again. We reorganised the detail view in order to have all product information at the same place and to get more focus on the product image. It’s now clearer and more impactful. Chances are this might not be the last time we touch this view.
We also improved the category layout on iPad. The new view shows a more inspirational and dynamic layout for all category pages. No more boring rows of three images but a much prettier view. You can see this at work in the Marlies Dekkers app and it is now available for all brands.Read more
Apple Pay offers customers a quicker and safer way to pay. Using your fingerprint, paying becomes super easy and removes all friction from the buying process. This results in less cart abandonment and a smooth buying experience. This feature is available in the UK, France, and the US. Now if only Apple could launch Apple Pay in the Netherlands and the rest of Europe.
Search & Scan
The barcode scanner is great example of a mobile omnichannel feature to engage customers in-store. Now, customers are able to search for the right colour, size, or product by themselves. They even can check the online stock when their size is sold out in-store, just by scanning the product barcode.
The new iPhone 7 includes a taptic engine. This engine is able to give a little buzz when something happens on the screen. This is called haptic feedback. Now when customers add something to the cart using a Highstreet app, not only do they see the already existing animation but they also feel a little buzz.
Love to favourite
App customers love to favourite items in order to create their personal wishlist. So we decided to improve the favourite animation and make it more clear and delightful. To do so, we added a big heart on the product image. Now when you tap the favourite button, the heart pops up nicely.
Web visitors need to know that there is an app that improves their shopping experience. For this, we created our smartbanner. This year, we improved the smartbanner by showing an open directly button next to the existing download button. Customers who already downloaded the app can now open the app right from the mobile site.
A new home for your merchandise
Besides working on new app features, we are also busy improving our Highstreet Studio to make it easier for brands to create amazing home experiences, lookbooks, and send relevant push notifications.
The Home Merchandise Manager in Highstreet Studio now offers flexible layouts for home content. Brands can upload images into different layouts to create a playful home experience. We are excited about the way brands are experimenting with multiple layouts.
Before, home just linked to categories. Now, each merchandise item on home can link to lookbooks, individual products, and web content (like much-requested videos). Or brands can leave them empty and create a static image. This is ideal for promotional messaging or for a store’s value statements (free shipping etcetera).
In Studio brands can create different home experiences for every campaign, celebration, or season. One of them is live at any given time while the team works on preparing others. Scheduling the home experience gives brands the opportunity to easily create a new home for any event.
Salesforce Commerce Cloud
Our new commerce partner
This year, we launched the first brand on Salesforce Commerce Cloud (formerly known as Demandware) with Scotch & Soda. We are highly invested in the Salesforce platform and integrate deeply to make it very easy for brands to use both the Salesforce and Highstreet solution. We were proud to be Platinum sponsor of the Demandware Xchange event in Berlin and to be certified as their LINK Technology Partner.
We keep getting better
Mobile is ever changing and it’s our ambition to offer the very best shopping experience on mobile. This means we need to keep improving our platform all the time. That’s why, this year we tried out much shorter release cycles. This is making us more agile and allows us to roll out improvements on an ongoing basis for our customers. Currently, we are releasing every two weeks and though this could change in the future we start 2017 with the same schedule.
2017? Will be even better :)
This was an amazing year with beautiful new brands and great new features for our platform. However, with what we have in the pipeline and the awesome team we have (now 15 people and growing), we look forward to an even better 2017! Stay in touch, we certainly will.