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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.

How Physical Retailers Can Benefit From Partnering With Digital Businesses

RR Interactions2 ImageUp to 90% of consumers prefer to look at products in-store, even if they ultimately complete their transactions online, according to a recent survey from A.T. Kearney. Additionally, the U.S. Commerce Department reports that 94% of sales still take place through traditional retail channels.

But the reality is: We’re living in an omnichannel world, and consumers enjoy learning about — and buying from — cutting-edge online-only retailers.

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IKEA Opens Two ‘Pick-Up Points’ In Canada

IKEA-storeIKEA Canada will open its first two “Pick-Up-Points” in London, Ontario, and Quebec City in late 2015 as part of a global test pilot. With these new locations, consumers who have either shopped online or at a further IKEA store will be able to pick up products closer to where they live.

IKEA currently has 12 stores open across Canada, and is opening the Pick-Up-Points in markets where there are currently no locations.

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IBM Spotlights New Solutions, Success Stories At Amplify 2015

After announcing a new partnership with Facebook, IBM shared details on a series of new solutions and customer success stories during its annual Amplify conference. The event, which was held May 11-13, 2015 at the San Diego Convention Center, touted educational tracks that aligned with IBM’s overall vision, focusing on e-Commerce, customer analytics and marketing. 

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Keep it Simple: Why Last-Touch Attribution Is All [Most Of] You Really Need

omer-headshot-hi-res 2Many smart, well-meaning marketers have spent a lot of time trying to figure out which specific touches across different channels drove consumers to make a purchase. For example, a buyer clicks on a banner ad and does nothing, then two weeks later searches on Google and follows a paid AdWords link to the site, and finally clicks on a link in a personalized email the next day and makes a purchase. All these marketing touches contribute to the conversion, but how important was each one? This is the problem of “multi-touch attribution” in campaign marketing.

Of course, marketers need to know which efforts and channels have performed best so they can gauge ROI and optimize their marketing spend. They invest in complicated attribution modeling systems that attempt to measure how much each touch actually contributes to the buyers’ decisions. But if you actually look at the data, these complicated modeling systems are unnecessary. The best approach to attribution is often the simplest: in most cases, this means simply crediting the last touch as the most important driver in consumer purchasing decisions.

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Aligning Email With The Omnichannel Customer Journey

The top goal for any email marketer is to capture consumers’ attention and incent them to click to the e-Commerce site or visit a store. Tried-and-true tactics, such as offering discounts, sales and offers, have helped them achieve this.

Up to 45% of consumers say they’re more likely to open and read an email if the subject line mentions a discount or special offer, according research firm L2. So it’s easy to see why retailers have stayed in a discounting frame of mind.

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Only 6% Of Marketers Have Captured A Single View Of Customers

RR Signal ImageOnly 6% of marketers say they have attained a single view of customers to support their cross-channel marketing goals, according to a study from Signal. However, 90% of marketers understand that achieving a single view across all touch points and devices is important or essential to reaching these goals.

Signal conducted an online survey between January and March 2015 to garner insights from 171 marketing professionals in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Latin America, Asia and the Middle East. Marketers in the retail and consumer durables industry represented 24% of the respondents — the highest of any other industry. One third of survey respondents said they integrate multiple purchased solutions in-house to capture a single customer view, while the same amount of respondents said they use a combination of in-house and external solutions.

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Leverage New Retail Technologies To Enhance The Omnichannel Experience

VP site only Zooz head shotA retail transformation is underway, and it is being driven by technology. Technology providers are producing solutions to drive greater personalization for consumers, more conversions for retailers, and more traffic on all channels. To take full advantage of smartphone ubiquity and the popularity of online commerce, retailers should consider introducing some of these technologies to enhance their omnichannel consumer experience.  

Much of this tech focuses on leveraging data to optimize marketing efforts and build brand experiences.  Using data, companies can identify inefficiencies within the customer experience, gain a better understanding of their customers’ shopping preferences and, consequently, increase conversions by meeting customer needs. Data and the technology used to aggregate it enable retailers to merge the online and in-store customer experience into a single omnichannel journey. New innovations like virtual gadgetry and personalization technology are both modernizing brick-and-mortar retail and improving the customer experience across all touch points — physical and digital alike.

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Why TV Should Be 'Up Front' And Center For Retailers (Pun Intended!)

VP site only R2C Group head shotSpring is here and so is the Upfront.  So TV is on everyone’s mind whether you participate in the Upfront or not.  While some experts have predicted the decline and demise of television advertising, I think marketers should buy more TV, not less, especially in the retail category.

We have heard countless times that TV advertising is simply not sustainable given the growth of online marketing, social, mobile and other forms of digital media. But, when it comes to customer acquisition, the first screen is still the best screen.  In fact, PwC has reinforced the need to pay close attention to TV. (1)  That report stated that “despite the growth of digital media, TV advertising remains the place to be. Global TV advertising revenue is successfully responding to the rise of newer forms of digital media and will grow 5.5% over the next five years.”

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Zulily Unveils New Online Shopping Experience Despite Subpar Financial Results

Although zulily recently missed its quarterly revenue goal, the flash sale e-Tailer has completed its first major site redesign. The redesigned site aims to provide consumers with a more customized shopping experience. New shopping capabilities and technology will help the retailer deliver unique products and curated events across devices. 

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NetSuite Launches SuiteCommerce InStore During Annual Conference

During its annual SuiteWorld conference in San Jose, Calif., NetSuite unveiled a new system designed to integrate the online and in-store customer journey. Called SuiteCommerce InStore, the new solution is designed to provide retailers with an enterprise-class, mobile-first POS platform that empowers associates and improves the customer experience. SuiteCommerce InStore is available immediately to NetSuite customers in the U.S., with an international release scheduled for early 2016.

Built on the NetSuite order and inventory management system, SuiteCommerce InStore provides end-to-end inventory visibility, and enables retailers to offer omnichannel fulfillment models such as ship-to-home. The solution also is designed to help associates manage discounting, multi-tender, gift receipts, suspend/resume transactions, and more.

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Warby Parker Raises $100 Million, Eyes Brick-And-Mortar Expansion

Disruptive eyeglasses retailer Warby Parker has raised another $100 million in funding, bringing the company’s total valuation to $1.2 billion.

T. Rowe Price led the latest funding round, which is intended to help Warby Parker expand its brick-and-mortar presence to 20 locations nationwide, according to TechCrunch. Currently, the brand has 12 locations in nine U.S. states. Wellington Management, Tiger Global and General Catalyst also contributed to the round.

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Nordstrom Tests Curbside Pickup In 20 Locations

Nordstrom is aiming to expand its omnichannel fulfillment options by testing curbside pickup in 20 locations nationwide.

Currently, the department store retailer offers a buy online, pickup in-store option, so consumers can receive their e-Commerce purchases faster. But in an effort to compete with online pure-plays offering same-day delivery, Nordstrom is making curbside pickup available in a number of test locations, including in the Seattle area, according to GeekWire.

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Video Viewers Are 1.6x More Likely To Purchase Than Non-Viewers

InvodoScreenWith a flurry of retail experiences available, customers need every edge they can get to make the right choice before a purchase. Videos give these shoppers the chance to gain more product insight before making a final purchase decision.

In 2014, online shoppers who viewed video during their purchase process were 1.6 times more likely to buy than shoppers who did not view video, according to the Invodo 2014 Video Commerce Benchmarks Report. Top performers on the Invodo platform experienced customers who viewed video 3.3 times more likely to purchase those who did not view video.

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Top 7 Priorities For Retail CIOs Today

VP head shot Oracle
The vast majority of retail business transformations are technology led, placing CIOs in strategic partnership with leaders across their organization.

As retailers enter new markets, improve the online shopping experience, or expand a product category, underlying technologies can determine the success, speed to market and profitability of each venture. In his annual list of strategic issues for the CIO, tech blogger and Oracle Chief Communications Officer Bob Evans estimates that CIOs will fulfill multiple roles and tackle some key business priorities as they work alongside their peers to effect business change and growth.

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