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INTERNET RETAILING AWARDS Focus on the shortlist: M-Retailing and IRIS awards

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As the Internet Retailing Awards 2013 fast approach, we take an in-depth look at our shortlist of commended retailers. The overall winners of eight awards will be named at a glitzy party, to be held at SushiSamba, 664ft up at London’s Heron Tower on June 26, along with the winner of an overall Judges’ Award and the winner of the Internet Retailing Award 2013, voted for by readers.

Today we focus on the M-Retailing and IRIS (internet retailing in-store) awards.

The M-Retailing Award, according to the judges’ guidance, is for retailers who have made mobile add up to more than an app and a mobile website, but rather to “an integrated, coherent and compelling experience under their brand – via the mobile, for a customer on the move, whether at home, on a bus or in-store.” The winner of the award will have a “clear mobile retailing strategy” that is transactional, engaging and integrated, with an offering that is both distinct to and supportive of the brand, taking into account the changing circumstances in which the mobile customer may find themselves. The commended retailers in this list are: Amazon, Debenhams, Dominos, the eBay marketplace and Net a Porter/Mr Porter.

Amazon and eBay both stand out on the list for their growing mobile revenues, while the “ubiquity” of Amazon’s in-store scanning for price comparison also contributes to its place on the list, say judges. Domino’s Pizza wins its place for the strength and financial success of its mobile ordering capabilities, while Debenhams’ place reflects its well-thought of mobile experience, that is well integrated into its digital shopping. Finally, the place of Net a Porter and Mr Porter on the list comes in the light of the fact that 15% of all its traffic now comes from mobile apps, including its standout ‘The Tux’ Mr Porter app.

The IRIS Award reflects the fast movement of internet retailing into the store, something the judges’ guidance describes as a “renaissance of the store and the in-store experience as a vital component of multichannel retail”. The award, say judges, will “recognise retailers who have moved beyond digital displays and point digital offerings to create an immersive, connected and compelling realisation of this next iteration of retail.” The overall award winner will demonstrate the seamless incorporation of digital technology into the store, and the ability of staff to manage the digital in-store capabilities, rendering it an elegant and normal solution to shopping.

Retailers commended in this category include Apple, Burberry, Dixons and M&S. Apple is commended for the way that it has extended its integrated store experience through app-based self-checkout, while Burberry wins its place for the digital store experience as showcased in its Regent Street flagship shop. Dixons while M&S is cited for its digital-oriented Cheshire Oaks store, its Shop Your Way offer and the wide use of in-store digital, culminating in the recent launch of its Amsterdam digital store.

On Tuesday we’ll be covering the next two award categories: the Customer Award and the Capability Award.

For more details of the Internet Retailing Awards and party click here. Ticket information can be found here.

For more information on the Internet Retailing Award 2013, the shortlist and how to vote, click here.

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