Millennials have been spotlighted as the driving force behind new technology and marketing trends in the retail industry. Highly connected, tech-savvy and demanding, these consumers focus on brands rather than channels, making a seamless customer experience more paramount to retail success.
O’Neill, a surf and action sports brand, is strategically focusing on creating a consistent brand experience across all devices, including desktops/laptops, smartphones and tablets. With a primary demographic of consumers 14 to 24 years old, a key priority for the company has been to “be a leader — not a follower — in offering superior digital experiences to consumers," according to Daniel Neukomm, CEO of O’Neill.
“Digital engagement is more of a competitive necessity than a competitive advantage,” said Neukomm in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. “We want to be front and center with leading-edge technology that allows us to provide great experiences.”
Since implementing the e-Commerce solution from Reflektion, O’Neill has been able to maximize engagement by tailoring online shopping experiences to individual customers. Using its patented algorithms, Reflektion can mine deep insights about customers and refine a variety of components of the site, including: Product recommendations, visual site search and dynamic discounting. As a result, the e-Commerce site is personalized to individuals rather than broad segments. The solution has helped O'Neill improve site engagement by 85% and increase conversion rates by 26%.
Of all marketing and commerce channels, mobile optimization is the top business venture for O’Neill through 2015. While retail traffic "typically flows proportionately between the desktop, smartphone and tablet, more than 50% of traffic to our e-Commerce site is via mobile,” Neukomm revealed. “We have a disproportionately high amount of mobile traffic and transactions. That’s the nature of our demographic; 14-year-olds are far more comfortable browsing and buying things on their mobile phones than any other demographic.”
Over the next 18 months, “mobile is and will continue to be our biggest priority,” Neukomm added. Specifically, the brand will be enhancing the cross-device journey so “the same experience online spills over into mobile.”
Expanding Personalization To The Wholesale Business
O’Neill has a strong direct-to-consumer business online and in branded shops nationwide, however, 90% of the company’s business is derived from wholesale relationships with retailers.
Neukomm sees the Reflektion technology as a “huge” opportunity to “support our retailers by offering wholesale selling tools.”
For example, O'Neill can tap Reflektion to create B2B e-Commerce platforms that include customized assortments for wholesale buyers, according to Neukomm. “Being able to leverage the Reflektion technology to influence the product assortments or even digital content for retailer partners is an exciting opportunity.”
Because Millennial marketing and engagement strategies are constantly evolving, retailers are “relying more on brands to harvest insight and arm them with the ability to better service customers,” Neukomm said. “Tools like Reflektion can add a lot of value to retailers. We’re helping them make smarter choices which, in turn, is good for both of us.”