How John Varvatos Made Their Own Shopping App & Got 1000 Downloads Within a Day of Launching

The team at MobiLoud held my hand along the way; everything from App Notifications, Analytics and registering with Apple/Google. With MobiLoud’s assistance, we feel super comfortable in this new realm.

Nick Barbarise
Director of Information Technology

John Varvatos is a men’s designer fashion brand, with an ecommerce presence alongside retail stores spread across the US, UK and Canada.


United States



Men’s fashion brand John Varvatos tried a number of avenues to build their mobile shopping app. After exhausting options that were unsuitable or too expensive, they found the perfect solution with MobiLoud.

Launched in 2000 by its founder of the same name, John Varvatos offers a signature collection of men’s clothing and accessories through 20 physical retailers, spread across the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

And while they have a successful ecommerce presence, Director of IT Nick Barbarise identified that their mobile experience was lacking, beginning the long search for a suitable tool to develop their mobile apps.

Why Build Apps?

While John Varvatos has a number of retail stores worldwide, today’s consumers demand the ability to shop online as well.

Their online store successfully provides them with a way to get in front of a broader audience. But the analytics told a story that they weren’t converting mobile shoppers as well as they could.

“After looking at the Mobile conversion within our Online Site Analytics, I saw a missed opportunity by not having an App Available for our Customers.”

Nick also identified more potential ways they could get in front of customers by building a mobile shopping app.

“Our company also needed an application that we can reach out to our customers, not just reach out via email or phone – but within an app.”

Searching for the Right Solution

To build their mobile app, they looked at a number of options. These included other app builders, as well as freelance developers.

“We tried a handful of different options in the market as well as reaching out to countless freelancers. There were none out there that provided us with the ease and accessibility that MobiLoud provided to our team.”

The issue was finding a solution that fit their specific needs. They needed a tool that would do most of the heavy lifting up front, but make it easy for their team to maintain and improve the app going forward.

“As someone who has a small team, with no app experience, we needed someone that would hand-hold us through the process of creating a signature app for our company, and how to maintain the app post launch; from in-app notifications to analytics.”

Most Ecommerce Brands Don’t Have the Resources to Build an App From Scratch

It’s one thing for brands to understand the benefits of their own app. But building it is another thing.

Ecommerce businesses are primarily focused on products, sales, and marketing. These are not IT companies, and they don’t have the resources on hand to build complex software.

Most brands don’t have the in-house expertise to build an app, or the space in their budget to contract someone to build it from scratch.

“My IT Team is very small and we are limited on resources to pull off programming an App, on both Apple and Android. I looked online and spoke with many programmers, all were outside of our budget and wouldn’t be able to deliver on time. MobiLoud really stood out from the group!”

That’s when MobiLoud comes in. We were able to offer a faster, more cost-effective solution than all the other options they considered.

What’s more, we gave them a personal touch to ensure they would fully understand their platform, and helped them build the perfect experience for their customers.

The Difference with MobiLoud

Nick loved the white glove treatment they got working with MobiLoud. Not many app builders offer the personalized experience MobiLoud does.

“The team at MobiLoud held my hand to ensure our app was done properly from the beginning to the day we released it. Everything from App Notifications, Analytics and Registering with Apple/Google, they were there along the way.”

MobiLoud’s solution is not only significantly faster than building an app from scratch, it’s exponentially cheaper. There’s no better value way to convert your website into mobile apps.

That allowed this store, who don’t have a huge budget for IT, to go live with their own, native mobile apps.

“You can’t beat the price they provided to get an app together.”

Growing Their Reach and Offering a Better Mobile User Experience

Instant uptake from John Varvatos customers validated Nick’s decision to build an app with MobiLoud.

“Our first day of launching the app to our customer base, we had over 1000 users download it. As a company that has been wanting an app for sometime now but was unable to move forward with such a project, this was taken very well across the organization”

The app is a huge step forward for their mobile user experience, offering the same functionality of the website, in a package that’s more convenient for mobile users to get to. Not to mention, operating faster and more smoothly.

“Even if the app works exactly like the website, something about having a specific button on your phone to launch it makes it feel so modern. And the app actually works faster than the website!”

They’re now taking advantage of the power of push notifications top bring shoppers into the app more frequently.

“We are looking now at ways to use App Notifications to reach out to our app users, while acquiring more downloads of the app.”

The app links on the John Varvatos website provides them with an easy way to get people into their app. From there, it’s easy to offer a supremely optimized mobile user experience

Nick has some advice for other website or store owners who are on the fence about launching their own app.

“Don’t wait much longer! We had zero app experience coming into this and with MobiLoud’s assistance during the app creation, we feel super comfortable in this new realm.

Not only do they have working mobile apps for Android and iOS, by walking them through the process, Nick’s team now knows exactly how their apps work, and can formulate an app optimization strategy, without needing to keep an expensive mobile developer on staff.

Along with the services that MobiLoud provided to us, we now know how it works, how app programming is done, how to grab analytics we never had visibility to before, how to reach out to a customer we couldn’t before and other great new lessons learned from this project.”

You can read more about the benefits of building ecommerce apps with MobiLoud Canvas.

To find out more about building your own mobile app, get in touch with our team. 

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