Speaking on an analyst call this morning (12 April), Asos chief executive Nick Beighton said the brand was only “scratching the surface” when it comes to m-commerce.
Asos appears to have more confidence in mobile than its fashion rival Next. Speaking last month, Next’s chief executive Simon Wolfson said m-commerce will only have a “marginal” impact in convincing British consumers to up their spend at the fashion retailer.
Despite mobile now accounting for 27% of sales at its Next Directory online business, Wolfson said: “A lot of people still use mobile for amusement and not a serious shopping mission like a desktop PC.”
But Beighton doesn’t appear to share Wolfson’s sentiment. He told analysts: “Our digital marketing division has had a great six months and we are only just scratching the surface when it comes to mobile.”
During the half-year period, Beighton said 62% of the online fashion brand’s traffic came through a mobile device, while overall mobile traffic grew 85% year on year.
He also credited Asos’ role as a content creator and ‘A-List’ – its new points-based loyalty scheme, which gives frequent customers rewards such as free next day delivery and vouchers.
“We are really appealing to twentysomethings as we are producing engagement through content at an unprecedented scale,” he added.
“We now publish tens of thousands of pieces of new content every month through every social channel and we’ve written content for over 84,000 products. This has helped us grow our social media followers to 17 million. Our A-Lister reward loyalty programme also launched In February and it has had a great impact.”
Beighton said that YouTube views were up 56% over the half-year period and that Asos now takes 24,000 photos a day before distributing the visual content across its social media channels.
He also credited the role of Snapchat. “Snapchat is an increasingly important channel for our customers: during London Fashion Week, ASOS content featured in their ‘Fashion Week Stories’ series which was viewed more than 20m times in the UK, France, Germany and Australia.”
For the period, Asos grew UK sales by 25% to £289.5m, while group revenue were up 21% to £667.3m. Pre-tax profits, meanwhile, grew 18% to £21.2m despite the failure of its Chinese operation, which will soon cease trading.