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Omnichannel / Cross-Channel Strategies

Cross-Channel Strategies offers readers an inside look at the successful cross-channel promotions, campaigns and programs employed by industry leaders. Retailers across industry segments and regions are adopting unique and innovative approaches to reaching today’s cross-channel consumers. Subscribe to the feed and stay in touch with the latest retail happenings.

Optimize M-Commerce With A Holistic Digital Strategy

It’s no secret that mobile engagement is forever changing how and when consumers shop. In fact, mobile devices drove nearly a third (31%) of all holiday sales in 2016, generating more than $24 billion over the course of the holiday season. So the task at hand for retailers is not to simply have a mobile presence in place, it’s to offer an experience that helps their business stand out from competitors.

How Retailers Can Set Themselves Up For Successful Personalization At Scale

Q: How should a retailer structure its team internally to drive the best results with personalization? When is it time to think about bringing in outside help?    COLTON PERRY: Personalization needs to be an interdisciplinary and broad initiative.  When done correctly and strategically, it touches multiple departments, teams, and constituents.  These can include email and CRM, marketing, customer support and call center, digital and customer experience, merchandising, analytics and more. That being said, it is crucial to have someone on the team who is able to work with internal teams, translate their goals and customer profiles, and create and implement an integrated personalization program.

4 Ways To Maximize ROI From $2.5B In IoT Investments

Internet of Things (IoT) implementations within retail would seem to be on a strong growth path. Merchants are expected to spend as much as $2.5 billion on the technology by 2020, and as many as 70% of retailers say they are ready to make the changes necessary to adopt IoT devices. Applications including smart shelves, temperature sensors, indoor light sensors and mobile scan-as-you-shop devices are already being used to enhance in-store operations. While leading retailers including Kroger, Tesco, Target and Carrefour already are exploring IoT’s potential, however, they remain primarily in “trial mode.” These merchants, and the larger retail industry, won’t see the big benefits that IoT advocates have been promising until they scale up their implementations — and also forge greater connections between the various IoT platforms and the retailers’ enterprise databases and control systems.

100% PURE Gets Personal To Drive Customer Acquisition

An e-Commerce retailer with a growing brick-and-mortar presence, natural cosmetics beauty brand 100% PURE sought to acquire more consumers, improve its in-store experiences and more accurately measure KPIs such as traffic and conversion rates. With the help of in-store analytics solution provider RetailNext, the cosmetics brand now can track shopper preferences, enabling it to add personalization to its customer experience. Personalization is the “low-hanging fruit” that 100% PURE is using to attract customers that may only visit one of its channels, according to Rick Kostick, CEO and Co-Founder of 100% PURE.

Marketers Struggle To Localize Content Across Channels

  • Published in News Briefs
Marketers are realizing the challenges around localization and adapting their strategies for different geographies. A new study by the CMO Council titled Adaptability in Branded Content Delivery revealed that two-thirds of marketers rate their organizations and agencies below satisfactory in their capacity to translate and adapt brand marketing content across the markets and channels they serve.
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Exclusive Q&A: What Will The Mall Of The Future Look Like?

The current pace of retail bankruptcies and store closures could lead to as many as 25% of the nation’s malls closing by 2022, according to a report from Credit Suisse. This percentage equates to roughly 275 mall closures over the next five years, suggesting that the mall model must change — and change fast. In a Q&A with Retail TouchPoints, Jason Green, the CEO of Chicago-based retail and CPG consultancy The Cambridge Group, shared the direction he believes malls will have to take in order to survive and thrive. During the interview, Green discusses: Major problems today’s mall operators face; The need to gravitate toward a “lifestyle mix” as they cater to a growing urban, Millennial population; Transitioning from fast food “food courts” to more locally curated “food halls;” and Integrating mobile to address convenience, including parking and product fulfillment.

How Interactive Technology Just Might Save The Brick-And-Mortar Experience

Interactivity is the new name of the game for a wide range of industries looking to better engage their customers. And where better than retail, an industry that’s fighting to keep market share against burgeoning online sales across virtually every category? Digital has transformed the ways in which customers discover, buy and engage with products and services. According to Mary Meeker’s annual Internet Trends report, online sales increased by 15% in 2016, continuing a long-term trend. A recent report by Pew Research Center found that nearly 80% of Americans do some shopping online. So regardless of any other customer data, you can bet that a high percentage of your customers are already browsing, if not shopping, on their Internet-connected devices. Considering that 77% of Americans now own a smartphone, the shift toward mobile and online purchasing will only increase.

69% Of Retailers Rely On Employee Training To Fill Store Performance Gap

With more retailers closing physical stores and consolidating space, it is critical for them to optimize every store in their arsenal. As a first step to closing the gap between high- and low-performing stores, most retailers (69%) seek to improve store employee training, according to a survey from Square Root and Forrester. Retailers seeking to narrow the gap also take additional measures, including: Empowering store managers to make actionable decisions in order to improve the customer experience (53%); Improving field and store management training (41%); and Implementing or expanding Store Relationship Management (SRM) technology within the next year (33%).

Cole Haan Selects Aptos Commerce Platform

  • Published in News Briefs
Cole Haan LLC has selected the cloud-based Aptos Enterprise Order Management solution. The retailer plans to use the platform to improve its direct-to-customer initiatives with new omnichannel capabilities that integrate the digital and physical retail channels.
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Retail Of Things: That’s How We Like To Call It!

In the past decade, there has seemingly existed much ado about something termed as the ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT). Industry experts, technologists and researchers have since then devoted resources — monetary and human — to come to terms with this new reality. The retail industry among many others has undoubtedly been the earliest to adopt the IoT and has imbibed its own life and breath. In this article I like to term that as ‘Retail of Things.’ The unanimous view in the retail industry is that the future of retail cannot be envisaged without IoT. According to a study by Retail Systems Research (RSR), 72% of retailers surveyed stated that they have invested in IoT related projects already. We believe that the Retail of Things journey requires companies to adopt a multifold approach that includes not just reengineering the technology strategy, but also conceptualizing strategic approaches in the customer experience and new revenue spheres.

Will Staples Thrive In Private Hands?

The $6.9 billion buyout of Staples by private equity firm Sycamore Partners wasn’t exactly a shock to retail industry observers. Following the failure of its merger with Office Depot in 2016 and 14 straight quarters of same-store sales declines, either a buyout or a bankruptcy became increasingly likely. Now that the shoe has dropped, the guessing game becomes tougher. Going private could give Staples the breathing room to make long-term changes without facing the quarterly scrutiny of Wall Street. On the other hand, Sycamore Partners might seek a quick profit by selling off assets while radically shrinking the business.

Innovation Gurus Rate What’s Hot/What’s Not In New Tech

Separating what’s truly innovative from what’s merely interesting is one of the biggest challenges in retail. Then there’s another crucial step: identifying technologies that are not only innovative but will actually enhance operational efficiency, the customer experience, or (hopefully) both. At the 2017 Retail Innovation Conference, attendees were lucky enough to hear from two people who are uniquely qualified to make just these kinds of judgments: Scott Emmons, Head of the Innovation Lab for Neiman Marcus, and Pano Anthos, Managing Director of the innovation incubator XRC Labs. In a freewheeling dialogue, Emmons and Anthos gave their unvarnished opinions about the pros, cons and practical applications of a number of up-and-coming technologies, including:

Three Ways Retailers Can Compete Against The Amazon Effect

Today, you can’t have a conversation about the current state of retail without mentioning Amazon and the effect it’s had on the entire industry. Not only Amazon, but a growing number of companies following in its footsteps, like Uber and Airbnb, are continuing to steal consumer share away from traditional retailers and service providers based on the agility, accessibility and overall innovative offerings provided in their business models. Recent reports indicate consumers increasingly shopped on Amazon during the holiday season last year. Slice Intelligence, a provider of actionable commerce, reported that out of 1.7 million onlineshopping receipts collected from Nov. 1, 2016 through Dec. 16, 2016, the majority of those online purchases went to Amazon, with Amazon taking a 46% share of the marketduring the season.

Localized Research Targets Sales Goals At 770 Barnes & Noble College Stores

Generating close to $2 billion in sales from 770 campus bookstores, Barnes & Noble College is the largest subsidiary of Barnes & Noble Education, a public company that is a separate entity from Barnes & Noble Booksellers. Acknowledging competition from online sources and other competitors, Barnes & Noble College recently expanded its national and generational research initiatives by launching a detailed research strategy, called Project 770, to better understand each specific target audience for every one of the 770 stores. In total, Project 770 generated responses from 176,000 students. And as a follow up to the research findings, local store managers are empowered to implement the best strategies they see fit for their target customers in keeping with the company’s almost 50-year culture.
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