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Business Intelligence / Data / Analytics

In order to be successful in today’s omnichannel retail marketplace, merchants must collect information from numerous internal and external sources, then analyze that data. New solutions can help to optimize incoming data in order to deliver the business intelligence and analytics needed to move retail businesses successfully into the future. This section offers feature articles, special reports, industry viewpoints and the latest news to help retailers make sense out of the growing influx of information.

Optimove Integrates With Google Ads To Boost Customer Retention

  • Published in News Briefs
Customer Marketing Cloud Optimove has announced an integration with Google Ads designed to add customer retention capabilities to its customer acquisition solution. By targeting existing customers through personalized ads on Google.com and across the Google Display Network, Optimove will enable marketers to increase customer spend, engagement and retention.
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Wayfair Boosts Click-Throughs And Traffic With Optimized Search Ads Featured

Online retailers want lots of people to click through the ads they place on search engines, but what they really need is lots of the right people to click on their ads. The "right" people are those who actually are interested in the e-Tailer's products, and who could be motivated to complete a purchase. Furniture retailer Wayfair has worked with the Yahoo Gemini platform to optimize its search ads since May 2015, and has achieved strong results both in generating clicks and attracting good prospects. Wayfair's click-through rate (CTR) is 240% higher than the retail industry benchmark, and the overall quality of those clicking also has been high.

New Index Taps Promotions Data From 500 U.S. Retailers

  • Published in News Briefs
RetailMeNot has launched its Promotions Index, which aggregates average promotions data from the top 500 U.S. retailers across 19 retail categories. The Index also will report on the level of consumer engagement with retail promotions. There's a strong need for such data, according to a survey of 110 retail marketers…
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Ugam Extends Brand Intelligence To Help Retailers Optimize Channel Relationships

Ugam has extended its Brand Intelligence platform, a solution designed to assist brands in optimizing their profitability, reputation and channel relationships by providing them with data and insights critical for monitoring their products’ online channel prices, presentation and promotions. The extension builds upon the offering with a suite of new capabilities that retailers can leverage to make intelligent business decisions, including:

Moving From Omnichannel to Digital Transformation

The impact of the digital economy has created challenges for all CEOs, particularly for those in the retail sector. What began as a quest to create the perfect customer experience has made retailers turn their attention to building a superior omnichannel environment, to keep up with the proliferation of touch points and to meet the ever-changing shopping habits of consumers. Recently, Stibo Systems conducted a comprehensive research study to learn more about the state of the digital transformation and the key benefits and challenges companies from various industry verticals and regions have faced. What we found is that three-quarters of all respondents (75%) claimed that they were currently undertaking a digital transformation project, while nearly three out of five (59%) said their organization was investing more in related transformational activities in 2015 vs. what was spent the previous year.

Insights Are Overrated

With the amount of digital data in the universe growing at an exponential rate — doubling every two years by most accounts — it’s easy to see how recent years could be dubbed as “The Big Data Era.” Retailers and marketers played a large role in this, focusing on gathering data from every source, and squirreling it away for a rainy day. From there, we came into the “Era of Insights.” Retailers began to take their data stores and analyze the information hidden within them, hoping to glean insights that will help improve their interactions with customers. How can we summarize what has been happening in the market? What guesses can we make based on what happened in the past?

Is Good Karma The Newest Customer Reward? Featured

Several years ago I heard a futurist predict what the retail economy would be like by 2020. One of his big ideas was that consumers would begin to monetize themselves, "selling" things such as their private information, their attention to a given marketing message and the right to address personalized communications to them. Now, four years ahead of schedule, some consumers are being rewarded by retailers for actions they take, but the big difference is that they aren't earning money. They're being showered with an incentive they can't take to the bank: good karma.

Innovating For Innovation’s Sake

Innovation is as integral to a company’s growth as finance or operations, but what drives real innovation in the retail industry? Many people associate “innovation” with the latest bells and whistles featured in a tech blog — regardless of its relevance. But innovation is so much more than that. For retail, innovation is about identifying actionable ways to get ahead of the ever-increasing pace of change, and learning how to operate in a constantly evolving environment. Innovation in retail isn’t about doing something “cool” to get attention — it’s about the ability to adapt, it’s about survival. Innovation is no longer a nicety — it’s a necessity.

Tacit Knowledge Unveils Ncommerce Engine To Power Customer-Centric Commerce

Tacit Knowledge, a Newgistics company, has released the ncommerce e-Commerce engine. The technology is designed to combine numerous data-gathering and relationship-building tools in a single platform that fits today’s customer-centric mindset. Ncommerce is built on SAP Hybris e-Commerce software and deployed on the Google Cloud Platform, empowering merchants with advanced omnichannel capabilities running on Google’s infrastructure. The platform integrates technology from customer retention cloud provider Sailthru, integrated payment management platform CyberSource and content delivery network (CDN) Fastly.

Michaels Acquires 10 Million-Customer Database From Hancock Fabrics

Michaels has acquired the rights to the Hancock Fabrics brand, domain names, mailing lists and intellectual property from U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware for $1.3 million. Michaels, an arts and crafts retail chain, does not sell fabric and sewing materials within its stores, but sells them exclusively online, signaling that the brand may attempt to expand further into that category. The Hancock Fabrics mailing list will be useful to Michaels as it learns more about the different types of consumers that may purchase from them. This customer data could be beneficial for running promotional campaigns or deciding where to allocate merchandising budgets.

Oracle Integrates Swirl Mobile Platform Into Marketing Cloud Ecosystem

  • Published in News Briefs
Mobile marketing platform provider Swirl has launched its Mobile Presence Management and Marketing Platform on the Oracle Marketing AppCloud ecosystem of marketing applications and data services. Through the partnership, retail marketers can access shopper behavioral data within the AppCloud to create appropriate personalization campaigns, both in and out of the…
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DynamicAction Secures $15 Million In Funding, Partners With Accenture

DynamicAction, a data analytics solution provider for retail merchandisers, has secured $15 million in a Series B funding round led by Accenture and West Coast Capital. In addition to funding DynamicAction, Accenture will become a reseller and service provider for the DynamicAction solution. The strategic alliance is designed to marry Accenture’s delivery network and consulting capabilities with the analytics capabilities of DynamicAction. Throughout the fundraising period, the DynamicAction team wasn’t just seeking out cash; the team was in search of a leading investor and partner that understood the retail market and the growing complexities of the industry, according to John Squire, CEO of DynamicAction.

Is Jet.com Pricing Technology The Real Prize For Walmart? Featured

Walmart is looking to acquire a major weapon — sophisticated pricing technology — in its ongoing battle with Amazon. The Bentonville retailer is reportedly in talks to acquire pure-play startup Jet.com for a hefty $3 billion price tag, according to the Wall Street Journal. "Jet.com’s potential market advantage is in leveraging its consumer facing transparent volume pricing negotiation technology to lock in bigger and more recurring customers, but they were challenged to attract a broader consumer base and to lock in a longer list of suppliers," said Leslie Hand, VP, IDC Retail Insights in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. "This is a great move for Walmart, because Walmart can use Jet.com’s technology to innovate value pricing and bring it to the masses like only Walmart can. It's a case of 'they are both better off together.'"

Moving Beyond The Hype: 3 Tips To Bring Personalization To The Next Level

It should come as no surprise that location-based marketing is gaining traction as it evolves, especially in the retail industry. It’s got the magic formula to deliver the right message at the right time to the right customer — a triple threat if you ask me. But is it all hype? With more and more shoppers seeking personalized experiences, location-based tactics allow retailers to reach their customers on a more individualized level. Consumers want curated content that is personal and meaningful. They also want to be able to research and explore all options on their own so they know they’re not missing something.

Overcoming The Organizational Obstacles Of Omnichannel

Consumers are desperate for omnichannel experiences. They work across channels; why can’t their favorite retailers? In their minds it is as simple as that, and a lack of multi-channel strategy by retailers leads to frustration and diminished brand loyalty among consumers. At a time when shoppers are demanding a seamless experience across all brand channels, both on- and offline, retailers are struggling to move at the speed their consumers want and need. Those were the findings of a Periscope survey at World Retail Congress 2016, which found 78% of retail executives admit there is no one brand experience across their channels, while also acknowledging that “a well-defined cross or multi-channel strategy” was the top innovation that would drive digital growth (64%).
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