Mobile content covers the gamut, from the implementation of mobile apps and mobile web sites to in-store mobile technology. A fast-changing industry segment, mobile presents unique challenges to today's retail organizations. This section will help retail executives stay on top of the latest news, insights and information to help solidify cross-channel strategies and draw traffic into stores.

Key Trends From The 2017 Holiday Shopping Season

The 2017 holiday shopping season was record-breaking. Black Friday sales alone totaled $5 billion — with customers spending more than $1 million per minute online, according to e-commerce platform Shopify. Additionally, Cyber Monday 2017 was the single largest shopping day worldwide in Amazon’s history — overcoming its annual summer sales holiday, Prime Day, by a long shot. Overall, it was estimated that retail sales from November 1 through December 24 (Christmas Eve) were up 4.9% over last year, the largest year-over-year increase since 2011, according to data from Mastercard SpendingPulse.

14.9% Of U.S. Web Users Connect Exclusively Via Mobile

As retailers create and evaluate their customer experience and engagement strategies, the pervasive use of mobile devices must always be kept top-of-mind. The latest data show that the use of mobile devices to access the Internet is becoming near-universal. Additionally, the number of Internet users exclusively using mobile continues to…

NRF 2018: Retail Personalization Reaches A Crossroads

The National Retail Federation Big Show jammed the Javits Center with people, technology and excitement from January 14 to 16, and Retail TouchPoints was there in force. In addition to conducting video interviews, our team of editors met with retailers, analysts and solution providers to get a line on the biggest trends that will be shaping retail in 2018. Visit the #NRF2018 hub for our complete coverage.

In-Store Mobile Could Generate A 146% Revenue Boost in 2018

  • Published in Mobile
Successfully deploying mobile in-store can drive up to 146% revenue growth for retailers this year, and may be a key investment decision for any retailer suffering flat or declining sales, according to a recent survey from Stratix and IHL Group. Retailers that are deploying in-store mobile POS saw a 24% average increase in sales in 2017 over retailers who don’t implement mobility in-store, according to the survey. Additionally, mobile POS-deploying retailers that are underperforming, i.e. have flat or declining growth, saw a 100% increase in sales for 2017, and predict another 47% of growth in 2018.

1:1 With CIO McNamara: How Target Achieved 25% Digital Growth In 2017

With mobile devices in the hands of employees across all 1,800 stores, Target was able to boost its digital business by more than 25% during 2017, said Mike McNamara, Chief Information and Digital Officer, in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. After a quick trial in late 2016, Target has now distributed upwards of 50,000 new mobile devices to all stores, with about 25 to 45 per store. “They were a big hit with the stores immediately,” said McNamara. The devices — TC51 mobile computers— are supplied by Zebra Technologies.

Omnichannel POS Solution Bridges Online-Offline Service Gap

  • Published in News Briefs
The new “Shopping” omnichannel point-of-sale solution from Cegid is designed to unlock actionable intelligence for retail associates about a customer’s online journey prior to their visit. With this information, staff members can offer a range of omnichannel services to shoppers while they are in the store. “Shopping” allows store personnel…

Vitamin Shoppe Adds Multichannel Options To Auto Delivery Service

  • Published in News Briefs
Vitamin Shoppe is providing greater convenience for its SPARK Auto Delivery subscribers —and an additional relationship-building tool for store associates — by enabling enrollment and management of the service through the POS system in the chain’s 775 stores, the VShoppe mobile application and SMS messaging. Since the service launched in…

Salesforce NYC Event Highlights Personalization In Action

Salesforce took its Dreamforce event on the road, landing at New York City’s Javits Center Dec. 14. The keynotes, presentations and breakout sessions covered a wide range of solutions and success stories, but the overriding theme for retailers was the importance of applying personalization at every stage of the shopper journey. Some of the event’s highlights included: • How Adidas marketers are leveraging the Salesforce Einstein AI solution to orchestrate personalized consumer journeys across multiple digital devices; and • How UGG shoes are simplifying mobile searches with machine learning-based product recommendations.

Electronic Express Adopts Omnichannel Solution Suite

  • Published in News Briefs
Electronic Express has selected the Jesta I.S. retail platform to support its goal of unified commerce. The Nashville-based retailer, which was founded in 1983 as a single 80-square-foot store, has grown into the largest independent consumer electronics and appliance retailer in Tennessee. However, rapidly increasing e-Commerce sales had created a significant…

How Mobile Data Integration Is Turning The Shopping Mall Into The Third Place

Dire headlines about the state of the shopping mall conjure images of department store closeout signs, empty food courts and lonely mall Santas. But as the holiday shopping season approaches, that dreary picture is far off from reality for the innovative retail centers that are fostering modern-day community spaces. By creating experiential and social environments where people convene more than simply “buy stuff,” commercial retailers and brands are establishing what have come to be known as society’s third places — the next stop after home and work. It’s this lifestyle experience-driven reimagining that is reinvigorating yesterday’s shopping mall, and in many cases, mobile technology and data is behind the evolution.

Exclusive Q&A: Salesforce Retail SVP On Why AI Is Driving The Future Of Personalization

During its annual Dreamforce event in San Francisco in November, Salesforce doubled down on its mission to help retailers create more immersive and relevant customer experiences across all channels. Touting success stories from Adidas, Party City and Suitsupply, the company’s SVP of Retail, Shelley Bransten, helped transform some of the hottest buzzwords in retail — “personalization” and “AI” — into tangible, real-world tools for retailers’ toolkits. A few weeks later, during the heart of the holiday shopping season, Bransten spoke to Retail TouchPoints to discuss:

Can Mobile POS Systems Boost Retail Sales At Peak Season?

Christmas is fast approaching and stores across the country are bracing themselves for a surge in activity. For many, this is the busiest and most lucrative time of the year, though it can be fraught with problems if not managed well. Significantly higher footfall and fierce demand for products mean that retailers have to work hard to maintain good customer service. Long queues, poorly arranged stock and a lack of available assistants frequently result in frustration for customers, even if their previous encounters with the brand have been positive. While others may be willing to hang around to grab a bargain, others will simply walk out of a store without making a purchase, or worst still, shun the shops altogether, preferring to spend their money online instead.

City Gear Enhances Mobile Engagement With Push Notifications

As an athletic footwear retailer selling shoes from brands such as Nike, Air Jordan and Adidas, City Gear is in a competitive market where it’s difficult to stand out, even with a customer-friendly mobile presence. To improve segmentation efforts and provide timely and relevant push notifications to consumers, City Gear selected Shopgate to develop its new mobile app. To promote the launch, City Gear offered in-store incentives to drive traffic to the app, such as 10% off on purchases. The app garnered 17,000 downloads in the first three months and City Gear reported a 79% push notification enablement rate and a $128 average order value (AOV) per purchase. Additional benefits included:

Black November Learnings And How Retailers Can Prepare For 2018

Black Friday and Cyber Monday, or collectively “Black November,” are exciting times for shoppers and retailers, but my favorite part of this season (even more than the cheap deals on tablets and HD TVs) is the influx of data that is collected and interpreted in the weeks following the sales. The sheer volume of transactions that take place results in an enormous data set that is a dream for any company looking to guide 2018 strategies based on the latest consumer buying habits. This year in particular has been especially monumental, as we’ve witnessed major milestones like mobile, for the first time ever, surpassing desktop shopping, capturing 47% of all orders. So what does it all mean? Consumers have grown accustomed to shopping just like they do everything else: seamlessly, quickly and likely using their smartphone. Before brick-and-mortar stores panic, there is hope, as the world of in-store retail is surely not broken — it just needs to evolve in certain areas to keep up. As 2018 is on the horizon, here are three predictions using learnings from Black November to fuel my recommendations for retailers to remain competitive in the most chaotic of times.
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