The UI/UX Truth about DTC Mobile Apps

Ari Murray leans into VRG GRL's mobile app CX. She'll give you the rundown behind the fashion brand's choices to make their mobile experience innovative — from aesthetics to optimizations.

Table of Contents

OverviewTapcart’s Tech Partner Program is designed to expand our ecosystem of partners, encourage partner-led extensibility

This post was originally featured in Ari Murray's Go-To-Millions Newsletter, which is all about how to successfully scale a brand to its highest potential through a modern, trustworthy playbook. She wholeheartedly believes marketing is supposed to be fun, so it's far from a snoozefest. The Tapcart Team has re-posted it here because the content is gold. So without further ado, let's dive into what millionaires are skimming these days.

Okay. Let’s play a game. IN vs. OUT.


Infrared saunas

Red roses

Brands with mobile apps

The K18 hair mask

Deleting TikTok when it stresses me out

The Row boots

Khaite sandals

Blueberry muffins


Bad mobile UX / UI

Brands without mobile apps! ONLINE SHOPPING IS SUPPOSED TO BE EASY!

If I love a brand, 10/10 times catch me downloading their mobile app the second I can.

Why? Because there’s ALWAYS an incentive to download. And, it’s ALWAYS an easier shopping experience. Online shopping, for me, exclusively takes place on my phone. And, as a die-hard shopper, I like the brands I like.

And, I like it when said brands allow me to EASILY build my wish lists, save my purchases to my account, and have my address on file.

When I’m shopping and a brand doesn’t have a mobile app to offer, I’m not mad - I’m disappointed.

Mobile apps just speak to my soul (maybe it's the ecomm in me, but I can’t help but smile as I see a brand take mobile UX/UI seriously). Take my beloved Sephora app. My ever-frequented Net-a-Porter app. My Chubbies app. THE AMAZON APP. VRG GRL’s app. Shopping is gamified, convenient, and BUILT FOR MOBILE when there’s an app in play.

When a brand takes the action to build a mobile app, they are walking the walk. I use Tapcart to build every mobile app in my universe, because the effort is minimal (and way less than you’re probably thinking!)

Building an app is not resource intensive if you work it right. And, I don’t know if you’ve hear, but:

“Mobile-first” is IN.

Mobile-first means taking every opportunity to improve the journey for our beloved shoppers, right? Putting them first means optimizing every pixel of their experience.

VRG GRL gets this. And, if you know me, you know I wear a LOT of their clothes (it makes me feel like I’m Sarah’s Day, what can I say!)  

*My phone is about to die, please ignore. MOVING ON*

VRG GRL gets this. And, if you know me, you know I wear a LOT of their clothes (it makes me feel like I’m Sarah’s Day, what can I say!)

I’ll show you why I love their app in a second, but for now, want to see their #’s?

The VRG GRL team built their app with Tapcart. And, here are the retention and return on app spend stats on their app (straight from their team, THANK YOU!)

  • Return on app spend=  40.61x
  • Over 71,472 push subscribers
  • 97.2% retention in the last 90 days

Incredible. Well-deserved. Well-optimized for mobile. Their app is also 100% on-brand (the Tapcart app designers wouldn’t allow for anything but perfection!)


Free wallpapers to download - an in-app perk!

A place to see WHAT’S GOING ON! Push notifications + the ability to see what the brand wants me to know. Deals, drops, and news - all in a very convenient tab within the app.

No surprise here, the mobile app PDP is stunning.

The Girl Guide (a better blog, conveniently within the app - sensing a trend??)


Here are 10:

  1. Push notifications. Why fight it out via email and SMS only, when you can push your way to the front? Hint: push notifications are FREE. Meaning you can reach out to your most devoted customers whenever you need to (whenever you have something important to say), without forking over $$$$.

  2. To take this one step further, 92% of users engage with push notifications!!!

  3. With Tapcart, the app is 100% branded as the brand’s name, not Tapcart’s (because Tapcart is a FULLY WHITE LABEL SOLUTION). Meaning the Tapcart team is simply the facilitator for designing and keeping the app updated, optimized, and running full steam ahead.YOU ACTUALLY OWN 100% OF THE APP AND YOUR SUBSCRIBERS.  Yes, even in the app store. Meaning, you own the end-to-end app experience and that you’re consistently promoting YOUR BRAND.

  4. Retention! It’s so much easier to retain customers who have your store SAVED TO THEIR PHONE!

  5. Tapcart’s drag-and-drop editor, plus their team of app designers and strategists, make for an actual partnership. An app is only as powerful as the team behind it, as is a website, as is a brand. ONLY THE BEST.

    P.S. If you want to add CUSTOM functionality to your app, outside of the drag-and-drop editor, then just use Tapcart’s new Custom Blocks feature. It lets us build anything we want within the app- via HTML, CSS, and JS. THE WORLD IS OUR OYSTER.

  6. 2 WEEKS. That’s how long it takes to build an app with Tapcart. In my past, pre-Tapcart, my team hired 5 full-time app developers and it took us 1 year to stand up our app. With Tapcart, it’s weeks not months and that saves so much time and $. Our friends at Tapcart do all of the heavy lifting for us so that we get to UNLOCK AN EXTRA CHANNEL WITHOUT HAVING TO HIRE ANY EXTRA PEOPLE TO MANAGE SAID CHANNEL.

    It’s quite frankly a misconception that launching an app is hard and time-consuming. Talk to Tapcart, they’ll show you the way!
  7. Mobile apps convert 40% higher vs mobile web browsers. BELIEVE IT. From my own shopping experience, I most definitely check out more frequently and with bigger orders when I can add to my in-app cart over time. It’s right there - waiting for me to complete my purchase. A web browser (one of the 1431431 I have open on my phone at all times), is much less effective.

  8. Have you ever tried to shop Amazon on a mobile browser? Clunky, slow as molasses, more steps. Have you ever shopped via the Amazon app? OF COURSE YOU HAVE! IT’S A1 INCREDIBLE.

  9. Did you know that a negative mobile experience makes people 62% less likely to buy from a brand again? PREVENT THIS WITH YOUR OWN APP!

  10. Brands’ mobile experiences powered by Tapcart retain customers more effectively. Oh, you know, just a casual 2.4x increase in customer lifetime value among app users on average!!! Don’t you want to get 2.4x more out of your most loyal customers? I know I do.

In summary:

  2. VRG GRL is going to take all my money (I bought that dress, BTW)
  3. Tapcart is the team to build your mobile app (there’s a reason all of our Sharma Brands clients use Tapcart for their apps - I DEMAND IT!)

If you want more content from Ari Murray, look no further. On top of her awesome newsletter (which drops 3x weekly), we seriously recommend you also subscribe to her podcast!

Build Stronger Relationships     Build Stronger Relationships     Build Stronger Relationships     Build Stronger Relationships     Build Stronger Relationships     Build Stronger Relationships    

Ready to wow your customers with an elevated mobile experience?

<Get early access/>