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Halfords mobile site goes transactional in time for Christmas

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Motoring accessory retailer Halfords has upgraded its mobile optimized website, launched in August, to make it transactional in time for Christmas – allowing the retailer to offer its entire product range to consumers on mobile, as it does on its e-commerce site.

The new version of the m-site now allows users to buy goods on the site and either have them delivered to home or office or for collection in one of Halfords 450 stores around the UK. The move follows research by the company that suggests that 13% of all e-commerce transactions will come from mobile devices by 2013, rising to 53% in 2014.

When using the new mobile site, customers can choose to pay by credit/debit card or PayPal, the same payment methods supported by Halfords is the first mass UK retailer to offer PayPal as a mobile payment method. The mobile platform was developed by Salmon using the same underlying architecture as (IBM WebSphere Commerce). Developing the transactional capability involved complex integration by Salmon between the mobile site, DataCash and PayPal to offer 3-D Secure. Salmon also integrated the mobile site with Multimap, SAP and Store6.

Customers can choose from Home/Work Delivery, Order & Collect (Free to Store) or Reserve & Collect, as well as using functions to search for products, read customer reviews, compare products, and find their nearest store with stock. 80% of the company’s business, however, is done through reserve and collect, and the company is keen that the mobile offering reflects that.

“A big part of our offering to consumers is that they come to the store to get the bike set up, or car battery or child seat fitted by our experts, so we reflect that by offering order and collect as well as reserve and collect through the app,” says Chris Corbin, head of multichannel at Halfords.

Mobile visits to now represent 8% of all its web traffic – and it is anticipated that this figure is only set to grow, as UK take up of smartphones increases and mobile shopping becomes a routine activity.

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