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B&H Photo Video expands into an iPhone app powered by its online commerce platform

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B&H Photo Video, America’s largest non-chain photo and video equipment store, has extended its web platform into mobile with an iPhone app which uses the company’s existing backend commerce platform.

Like many retailers, B&H recognised the emergence of the mobile channel as an opportunity to reach its loyal customer base with the ability to research and purchase products anytime, anywhere. B&H sought a way to expand into mobile before the holiday season while maximising its existing website infrastructure and merchandising capabilities. Already using Endeca’s search, Guided Navigation experience, and Page Builder merchandising tool, B&H was able to extend its mobile channel quickly.

“With Endeca, we have already recognised the ability to lower our total cost of ownership while still innovating with new content,” said Shlome Seidenfeld, CIO of B&H Photo Video. “It has helped us attract a loyal customer following. Endeca Mobile Commerce was a natural next step for us to create a consistent multichannel user experience. Our non-technical business users have the ability to make ongoing changes and improvements across all commerce channels that can go live in a matter of minutes – not weeks. This is invaluable to our business and to our customers.”

Endeca Mobile Commerce provides one platform and toolset for B&H’s business managers to have total control over the user experience, changing content dynamically on its dot-com website and mobile environment simultaneously. Additionally, B&H can create mobile-optimised user experiences with out-of-the-box Endeca Mobile Commerce components like prebuilt templates, merchandising cartridges, and a store locator. With Endeca Mobile Commerce, customers are able to integrate with their existing backend commerce systems and website features – which allows B&H to extend its eCommerce platform, shopping cart, rich product data, and PowerReviews user reviews into the mobile channel.

“Consumer adoption of smartphones has accelerated. In Q3, smartphone usage surged to 31 percent versus 19 percent in Q3 2009, according to the Nielsen Company,” said Cathy Halligan, senior vice president of sales and marketing at PowerReviews. “Content and community is a key part of an integrated mobile offering. Endeca’s Mobile Commerce is enabling retailers like B&H to enter the mobile channel quickly and easily.”

By leveraging out-of-the-box components and prebuilt mobile features in Endeca Mobile Commerce, B&H was able to enter the mobile channel with the introduction of an iPhone application, well in advance of the Christmas shopping rush. Plans are already underway for a B&H Android application, which will be controlled from the existing Endeca Mobile Commerce platform.

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