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Swimwear Site Shifting Its Mobile Site Display Power From Browser To Server

Written by Evan Schuman
June 19th, 2013

A swimwear and lingerie e-tailer called Bare Necessities is experimenting with a server-based (rather than browser-based) approach to re-sizing its site for various mobile devices. The benefit—if it works when fully deployed—will be faster initial page display and reduced overall load on the mobile browser. But the client-server rebalancing for mobile browsers is an interesting approach.

Jay Dunn, the site’s chief marketing officer, told Internet Retailer that he thought the approach has strong potential, but he’s skeptical until he sees how it does with the site’s full launch later this summer. “I have not yet seen conventional responsive design handle a true retail site. I have 6,000 products and more than 24,000 product images, not counting color swatches, marketing, video and animation,” Dunn said. “I haven’t yet seen the pure responsive design technology that handles that smoothly and efficiently across multiple devices.”

The historic problem with server-based approaches has been that it ultimately slows down the experience after the initial download, as the shopper needs to do a lot of back-and-forth interaction with the site.

That’s why this approach is so compelling for mobile devices, which can handle interactions quite well as it’s downloaded the initial full service of the site, especially one that comes pre-shrunk for mobile.

Granted, some larger tablets are hardly much smaller than some desktops, but they still tend to be much more responsive. Besides, smartphones are still where much of the traffic is.

This might not be optimal for desktops, but this has huge mobile potential. (Note how we’ve avoided playing off a lingerie site using a stripped-down browser strategy. You’re welcome.)


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