Ghirardelli Chocolate Sweetens Its M-Commerce Taste

Among the torrent of retailers and manufacturers jumping on the Mobile-Commerce bandwagon, almost all are focusing on adding capabilities to the M-Commerce direct Web experience. But Ghirardelli saved its creativity for a standalone mobile application. It's iPhone app, for example, taps into the phone's database—including the address book—to accelerate checkout.

But Ghirardelli is far from alone is being nervous about making the checkout process too easy. Customers must repeatedly type—or access—their content on the phone every time they shop, because the app points out that "Guest checkout does not save any information for future express checkout." And yet, the app provides no capability for the consumer to create an account from the app. That needs to happen on the site, although the app doesn't say that. The app also doesn't seem to readily accept coupons.

The site—delivered from Digby—also seems to need a little work. It didn't seem able to actually access that database data, forcing us—during a test of the site—to have to type in full E-mail address and name three times (that's annoying, even on an iPhone). It also crashed four times during 30 minutes of testing.

That all said, Ghirardelli is not only heading down the right path, but it's doing it in a non-traditional manner. Once it gets this mobile app to be completely and solely on the mobile device—and it works out the bugs—it's going to be one very sweet confection.