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Shopper Experience

Shopper Engagement delves into the latest trends and strategies retailers are using to cultivate long-term relationships with shoppers. Social media, mobile technology, in-store tablets and more are covered in this section. Subscribe to the feed and stay in touch with the latest retail happenings.

Office Depot Enhances Online Shopping Experience With CoreMedia

Office Depot, Inc., the office product retailer that includes Office Depot and OfficeMax brands, has selected CoreMedia LiveContext to streamline author collaboration and reduce time-to-market on integrated campaigns for Officedepot.com.

Using CoreMedia LiveContext, e-Commerce and marketing professionals can amplify their e-Commerce product catalogs with marketing content to create a more compelling online shopping experience.

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NRF Research: Shoppers Will Spend More On Their Valentines This Year

Love is in the air as consumers prepare to hit the stores and purchase gifts for their Valentines. In fact, the average person celebrating Valentine's Day will spend $142.31, up from $133.91, according to the National Retail Federation's (NRF) Valentine's Day Consumer Spending Survey. The survey, conducted by Prosper Insights and Analytics, concluded that total spending will reach $18.9 billion, an all-time high reported in this annual survey.

The vast majority of consumers (91%) plan to spend an average of $87.94 on their significant others, up from $78.09 in 2014. Additionally, 59% will spend an average of $26.26 on family members and $6.30 on children’s classmates/teachers.

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Neiman Marcus Debuts MemoryMirror To Ramp Up In-Store Experience

Despite the rise of e-Commerce, many consumers still prefer the touch-and-feel experience of the brick-and-mortar store. However, best-in-class retailers are striving to create a more compelling and innovative in-store experience by integrating cutting-edge technology in their locations.

Neiman Marcus has partnered with MemoMi to roll out the MemoryMirror in its Walnut Creek, Calif. store. The MemoryMirror is designed to take images and video of all clothing and accessories the customer tries on, allowing them to capture a 360-view of all outfits and compare options side-by-side. By developing their own accounts, shoppers can store images of all outfits and access them at a later time via their mobile devices. Consumers also can share images through email and social media.

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Bauer Hockey Selects Epicor To Power Retail Experiences

bauerBauer Hockey, a designer and manufacturer of ice hockey equipment, has selected multiple Epicor Retail solutions to power its new “Own The Moment” retail experiences locations. The retail experiences sites will showcase the full Bauer product line, offer in-depth product education and will feature an ice rink for customers to test-drive Bauer skates and gear. The first site is set to open in Burlington, Mass. in summer 2015.

Bauer is tapping the Epicor Retail Store, Mobile Store, Merchandising, CRM and Sales Audit solutions to deliver a personalized and interactive shopping experience to customers, while leveraging the Epicor Retail Software as a Service (SaaS) engagement model. Epicor’s SaaS solution is designed to eliminate the need to invest in and build out a retail-specific IT organization, giving Bauer Hockey the freedom and flexibility to focus IT resources on other parts of the business.

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Execs From Macy’s, Lowe’s And The Limited Dissect Omnichannel Strategies

“Omnichannel” has been a buzzword thrown around the retail industry and at the NRF BIG Show a lot in recent years, in fact so much that some execs tried to refrain from using the term this year. However, the concept is so vital to improving the customer-retailer relationship that it remains a prominent goal for retailers to achieve in 2015.

During the 2015 BIG Show, Tom Cole, Partner at Kurt Salmon, focused on omnichannel as the moderator of  a panel discussion titled: Optimizing Omni-Channel: Lessons and Insights from Industry Leaders. Panelists included: Diane Ellis, President and CEO of The Limited; R.B. Harrison, Chief Omnichannel Officer at Macy's; and Brent Kirby, Chief Omnichannel Officer at Lowe's. Discussions centered around the definition of omnichannel; the industry-wide shift toward omnichannel; and the strategies taken to improve the customer experience.

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Forrester Study: Retail Leads Shift To Modern Marketing

Oracle reportMarketers in a variety of industries could learn from retail, according to a recent study, titled: Why You Need To Be A Modern Marketer: The Business Impact Of Marketing Maturity In The Age Of The Customer, conducted by Forrester Consulting and commissioned by Oracle.

The global study of 492 marketing decision-makers featured responses from executives in 20 industries, including electronics, energy, financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, media and telecom, in addition to retail.

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Oracle Retail Announces Version 14.1

ORACLE-LogoOn the heels of the acquisition of MICROS in September 2014, Oracle has announced an update to its solution portfolio. Oracle Retail 14.1 is designed to help retailers support interactions and transactions across channels and devices.

New capabilities include:

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Microsoft Shares Success Stories Featuring GameStop, Hardee’s And TGI Friday’s

microsoftDuring the NRF BIG Show, Microsoft revealed how it has helped GameStop, Hardee’s and TGI Friday's improve the customer experience.

GameStop is leveraging the Microsoft Azure cloud platform to stream video game and promotional content directly to shopper and store associate mobile devices. The GameStop team displayed the technology at the Microsoft booth on the EXPO floor.

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ThoughtWorks Retail Hones In On The New Customer Journey

ThoughtWorks RetailScreenshot 2015-01-13 10.34.14 is showing how it helps top retailers create a cutting-edge customer experience at NRF booth #3849.

Leveraging co-creation and digital innovation, Thoughtworks Retail will demonstrate how mobile payment, order online/pickup in-store, in-store digital engagement and online personalization all can play a role in the new customer journey.

“Brands are now defined by those who experience it,” said Robin Copland, VP of Retail, ThoughtWorks. “Whether retailers and brands are ready or not, they will be a part of a journey where the customer will know exactly what they want and when and how they want it. At NRF, we will be challenging retailers to think about how their brand is making an impression through their customers’ journeys.”

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Only 11% Of Retailers Have Embraced Experiential Commerce

RR Coremedia ImageUnlike traditional online commerce — which is focused on transaction-centric elements such as product availability and pricing — experiential commerce seeks to replicate the complete shopping experience consumers are used to facing in a brick-and-mortar store.

Only 11% of retailers currently have an experiential commerce strategy in place, according to a survey conducted by CoreMedia, a provider of web content management software. However, experiential commerce is gaining traction, as up to 75% of companies are discussing the concept more extensively.

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Retailers Need Science to Curate and Calibrate Highly Tailored Assortments

VP site only OracleThe global spread of Internet-enabled devices (there are approximately nine billion now, a figure projected to rise to 50 billion in the near future) is bringing data, connectivity and choice to billions of people around the world. The accepted wisdom is that having more choices is a good thing for consumers, and for the most part it is — that is, until an almost limitless range of choices becomes confusing and overwhelming.

This “too many options” inflection point presents retailers with an important opportunity. It’s becoming increasingly clear that consumers are seeking tools and technologies to help them cope with the data avalanche available at their fingertips. Retailers that can curate their product assortments by tailoring them to the needs of various customer groups will gain a competitive advantage.

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Fabricland Boost In-Store Event Sales By 150% With Automated Voice Messaging

While promoting company marketing campaigns and events, retailers must ensure that the message is accurate, timely and fits with the overall company brand. Failing to meet these objectives can lead to weak marketing messages and missed revenue opportunities.

For one initiative, Fabricland, a Canadian fabric retailer and distributor, focused on connecting directly with loyal customers to help boost brick-and-mortar traffic and sales. By conducting invitational calls to its Spectacular Sewing Club members, Fabricland informed customers personally about special in-store VIP events and offers.

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110% More Shoppers Used Smartphones To Research Products In 2014

RR NinthDecimal ImageMore consumers are using their smartphones to research products and learn about sales from their favorite retailers, according to a report from NinthDecimal. Between Q2 2013 and Q2 2014, consumers’ use of smartphones for product research increased by 110%, replacing tablets as the most-used devices. During the same period of time, tablet usage dropped from 37% to 16%.

Approximately two thirds (63%) of consumers said they prefered to research retail products via traditional online tools, such as the retailer site and shopping aggregator sites. However, the number of consumers who researched on mobile devices increased by 46% from Q2 2013.

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Neiman Marcus Promotes In-Store Holiday Events With Beacons

NeimanbeaconEspecially during the holiday season, retailers seek to gain a competitive edge with consumers. With a keen focus on in-store engagement, a number of merchants are adopting Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology.

Neiman Marcus has implemented the iBeacon BLE solution in three locations (Austin, Tex., San Antonio, Tex. and Walnut Creek, Calif.) to promote and drive visibility for in-store holiday events such as trunk shows, makeup artist appointments and fashion presentations. The Neiman Marcus innovation lab (iLab) launched the campaign with the help of iBeacon solution provider BestFit Mobile, which provided the ProxDK platform to power the experience.

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