Retailers have doubled down on prioritizing their commerce-enabled mobile apps as the singular branded app experience. Expedited payment options within shopping-enabled mobile apps jumped from 59% to 67% this year, according to Gartner L2’s Digital IQ Index: Specialty Retail. This was an impressive leap, although it remains lower than the 83% adoption rate on mobile sites.

Specifically, PayPal is accepted by two-thirds of shopping apps in the study, and Apple Pay by nearly a third. Touch ID integration in mobile apps increased year-over-year, with 29% of examined apps now offering this streamlined login and payment method.

Investments in more innovative app functionalities also increased in 2018. Looking at all the brand apps tracked in Gartner L2’s study, 55% include a barcode scanner, up from 47% in 2017. Additionally, photo search increased to 16% adoption, with brands like H&M and Steve Madden joining early adopter Urban Outfitters by adding the feature.


Mobile app leader Aldo further differentiates its commerce-enabled app through integration with the brand’s in-store experience. While shopping in a store, customers can scan the barcode of a particular item via the mobile app to request a size and color. Using geolocation technology, the app notifies store associates who meet the shopper with the requested product, streamlining the in-store experience for customers.

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