L’Oréal Paris taps responsive design to create more personalized mobile experience
By Rimma Kats
February 27, 2013
L’Oréal Paris has relaunched its beauty site to be responsively designed across all devices, letting users experience a more personalized and uniformed way to browse content, whether through smartphones, tablets or PCs.
The re-launch also includes an exclusive content product and syndication partnership with AOL. L’Oréal worked with R/GA to help execute the initiative.
“The goal was to create an innovative new service based on each user’s unique characteristics, styles, and concerns, as well as how and where they access the site,” said David Womack, creative director of experience design, mobile and social platforms at R/GA.
“By answering a few simple questions, the site transforms to recommend relevant products, articles, and videos that help users achieve their beauty goals,” he said. “Because goals are always changing with seasons, trends, or moods, we always allow users to update preferences on any device, and registered users will see these preferences update across all devices.
“We're elevating personalization to the level of service by encouraging users to actively engage in refining the recommendations—and letting us know if we interpret anything incorrectly.”
According to L’Oréal, the site helps deliver a comprehensive service and offers consumers a more personalized way to find their signature looks.
Through the new site, consumers can share product and content recommendations based on stated characteristics, individual preferences and observed behavior.
Furthermore, the site remembers this information and, ultimately, follows each registered user’s journey across devices.
For example, if a user selects blue eyes from her desktop computer, the site will suggest complementary cosmetic products and educational content on her phone while she is in the drugstore aisle.
Through the site, consumers can received tailored product suggestions from L’Oréal, as well as browse editorial content and get advice from beauty pros.
The My Beauty Picks section is programmed to recognize and respond to all types of beauty preferences, regimens and looks for them based on their individual characteristics and current style inclinations.
Instead of a complicated survey, the new site offers a highly-visual dashboard that allows users to enter personal information more seamlessly.
In addition, the Beauty Library, features an extensive collection of articles and videos that can be filtered by category.
“Designing a responsive site of this scale and complexity for a brand as beautiful as L'Oreal was an exciting challenge,” Mr. Womack said. “We expect cross-channel usage to continue to increase along with mobile usage among women, so it was clear that a desktop-only approach would not meet our users' needs.
“Content parity was also important—all of the rich, beautiful products and content that users are looking for should be available on any device,” he said. “A responsive approach also had clear benefits for L'Oréal: they no longer have to optimize for every new device or manage multiple sites.
“As an added benefit, responsive sites generally perform better in search. Looking ahead, there are exciting opportunities to develop contextually relevant features and functionality, particularly for mobile-in-retail.”
As part of the new re-launch, L’Oréal Paris teamed up with AOL to make sure its site is providing up-to-the minute, trend-focused beauty editorial.
The exclusive partnership includes content creation and syndication on AOL StyleList’s Beauty Bar – a dedicated section of the site that will include L’Oréal Paris-driven articles, how-to videos and slideshows.
“Personalization is important because it gives users a great reason to log in to the site,” Mr. Womack said. “Logging in allows us to get a full perspective on a user’s needs and interests as they move between device.
“We can also personalize based on the user's context and behavior,” he said. “The user may choose particular devices for particular types of tasks.
“For example, she may tend to use her phone when she's at retail, or she may just grab whatever's nearest. She could also prefer to research products on a desktop before leaving for the store. The goal is to deliver the information that's right for her where and how she wants it.”
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