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UGG Unveils Digitally Connected Store

For Deckers Brands, “omnichannel” isn’t just a buzzword or catchphrase. Across the entire organization, which houses a variety of brands including UGG, Mozo, Ahnu and Teva, omnichannel is “an integral part of our culture of innovation and our retail strategy,” according to Dave Powers, President of Omnichannel at Deckers Brands.

The company has continually invested in omnichannel technologies and principles for more than five years now.

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Belk Spreads Holiday Cheer With Santa Baby Sweepstakes

Consumers use a variety of tools and channels to research, browse and buy. To drive engagement and sales during the holiday season, best-in-class retailers are creating compelling campaigns that span across social media, mobile and e-Commerce.

For example, southern lifestyle retailer Belk is partnering with HelloWorld for a multichannel, holiday-themed campaign, called the Santa Baby Sweepstakes. The companies have previously collaborated on a variety of campaigns, including the 125 Days of Prizes campaign to commemorate the retailer’s 125th anniversary.

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Tech Tools To Make The Independent Retailer’s Holiday Season Merry

Cox head shotIf you had to grade yourself on your level of technology adoption, would you be headed for the honor roll or failing miserably? Earlier this year, Cox Business polled hundreds of small business owners on the impact and influence tech has on their success, and a whopping 62% fall in the above average category when it comes to using technology to improve performance.  For those SMB owners in the latter category, it’s time to get up to speed. Take a look at our top technology picks to help you bring your A-game to promoting and operating your business during the holidays.

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Epicor Acquires ShopVisible To Expand Omnichannel Capabilities

epicorshopvisibleEpicor Software Corporation, has announced plans to acquire ShopVisible, LLC, a provider of cloud-based retail order management and digital commerce solutions. Set to close by the end of 2014, the acquisition is expected to help Epicor expand its position as an omnichannel solution provider for midsize and large retail chains.

Following the acquisition, Sean Cook, CEO of ShopVisible, and Josh Lloyd, Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer for the company, will join the Epicor Retail team to lead all cloud-based order management and digital commerce initiatives.

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Creating The Omnichannel Advantage

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Retailers understand that the key to higher sales is insight. They need to know what their customers, both current and potential, like, want and expect. This is now possible due to advances in technology whereby purchasing behavior can be tracked across retail channels and analyzed. However, this kind of omnichannel intelligence remains a seemingly monumental undertaking for many retailers.

Unifying retail data and the shopping experience across consumer touch points will indeed require time and money, but the result — that all-powerful insight — will be worth the effort. Below are guidelines for where and how to start.

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Sears Extends “Reserve It” Service To Shop Your Way Members

Some consumers may believe shopping online is more convenient, but it can be challenging to purchase apparel online because of the inability to try on items.

Sears has created a new “Reserve It” service to address this challenge, and allow consumers to make more efficient online buying decisions. With “Reserve It,” consumers have the ability to shop online, reserve items at their preferred stores and then eventually try on and purchase items. The complimentary service is available to all Shop Your Way loyalty club members.

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Amazon And The NYC MTA Roll Out Interactive Subway Kiosks

Amazon and the NYC Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) are striving to make holiday shopping easier for commuters by rolling out digital kiosks in subway stations.

The “On the Go” kiosks, built by Control Group, will present commuters with interactive digital ads featuring curated products from the Amazon Consumer Electronics Holiday Gift Guide. Brands featured in the guide include Belkin, Bose, Intel, Microsoft, Samsung, SONOS, and Sony. Relevant content and tips from the MTA also will be delivered via the kiosks.

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The Future Of Holiday Retail: Mobile, Beacons And Wearables, Oh My!

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With Black Friday upon us, images of crowded malls, arms weighed down with shopping bags, and long lines may come to mind. 

But shopping doesn’t have to involve camping out for hours for big discounts or waking up at 3 a.m. A closer look at the retail landscape today may bring into sharp relief just how dramatically things have shifted to meet consumer expectations of convenience, personalization and efficiency. In-store and online shopping have evolved significantly and innovation in retail technology is not slowing down anytime soon.

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CVS Health Accelerates Innovation With New Lab In Boston

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By establishing in-house innovation labs, retailers like Nordstrom, Walmart and Zappos are focusing on testing new tools, technologies business concepts. 

CVS Health is the latest retailer to join the innovation lab fray. This week, the retailer signed a lease to open a new Digital Innovation Lab on Huntington Ave. in Boston, Mass. The 15,130-square-feet location will serve as a hub for the CVS Health Digital team, which will remain headquartered in Woonsocket, R.I. Recently, CVS Health also opened a new Digital Experience Center at the company’s headquarters, and is actively recruiting new talent for both locations.

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Keeping An Eye On Returns This Holiday Season

Kevon Hill head shotFrom free shipping promotions to hiring an army of seasonal employees, it seems like every day a retailer announces a new competitive initiative to guarantee a painless holiday shopping experience — hoping that customers come back long after the tree has come down. But for e-Commerce, now more than ever, it’s not only how the holiday rush is handled, but also what happens after the gifts are opened, that most resonates with shoppers and moves the needle in establishing customer loyalty year-round.

Yes, I’m talking about returns and I’m making the case that investing in returns throughout the holidays and beyond is investing in long-term customer loyalty. No business likes putting money back in the hands of its customers, but simplifying the return of an unwanted, over-sized cat sweater is an indirect yet impactful way to promote customer loyalty.

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