Costume SuperCenter is the web’s largest one-stop retailer for kid and adult costumes. The company acquired the Birthday in a Box brand about five years ago, making it a go-to destination for consumers looking for costumes and party supplies. Costume SuperCenter operates five different websites between its brands, and recently overhauled them all within seven months to make them responsive.
Before Responsive Design
Costume SuperCenter didn’t always have responsive websites. For example, a separate, freestanding mobile site that mirrored the retailer's general desktop site was being used. Jim Moore, Costume SuperCenter's vice president of marketing, says this didn’t work so well for managing the online properties.
“It was a nightmare in terms of development,” says Moore. “We had to host it [the mobile site] as a separate site and monitor it.”
Costume SuperCenter had to upload all products, maintain pricing and promotions, and match ads and banners on both the mobile and desktop sites.
With the continuing rise of mobile usage by consumers, Moore knew Costume SuperCenter couldn’t keep up with the larger retailers in its space by using a separate site strategy for desktop and mobile.
“There’s a certain percentage of people for whom mobile is basically how they access the internet,” says Moore. “They don’t have a PC at home, or if they do, their kids use it for schoolwork.”
Reduce the Friction, Increase Conversions
Costume SuperCenter worked with WebLinc Commerce to make all of its websites responsive.
“The challenge for us is that we're not a big-brand company,” explains Moore. “We win by delivering great value to the customer from a product selection and pricing standpoint. But we also have to deliver a great user experience. If you make it hard for somebody to purchase, they’re just not going to.”
Therefore, Costume SuperCenter now makes it easy for shoppers to find products, get information, add to cart and check out — no matter what device they choose to shop from. And consumers have responded accordingly, helping Costume SuperCenter achieve the following:
- a 49 percent increase in conversion from mobile traffic; and
- a 24 percent increase in mobile conversion from tablets.
The Birthday in a Box brand, which never offered consumers a mobile experience, saw the following results:
- a more than 123 percent increase in conversion on mobile devices; and
- a 70 percent increase in conversion for tablets.
Another benefit of the responsive design is that there’s no website performance hit.
“Technology has moved far enough ahead,” says Moore, “that the bandwidth of these sites are to a point now, where for us anyway, it made sense to do it from a responsive approach because there’s no design penalty on the desktop when we do responsive mobile.”
Moore says that he's looking to keep improving the responsive experience for consumers. Costume SuperCenter’s busy season is Halloween, so the company wants to make changes before then.
“We aren’t looking to make any sweeping changes," Moore says. "They’re improvements to components within the pages on mobile and, to a lesser extent, on desktop.”
Moore said Costume SuperCenter is hoping to make mobile-friendly changes to its website, including accessorizing product detail pages and adding product recommendations.
Consumers are more willing to not only browse on mobile, but complete transactions as well. Retailers should make sure the shopping experience is the same, no matter where consumers choose to shop.