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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.

55% Of Households Use Amazon Prime, But BOPIS Keeps Them Shopping In-Store

Brick-and-mortar retailing still has room to thrive, even in a world where 55% of U.S. households have Amazon Prime accounts: 75% of retail business will still be driven by physical stores in 2022, according to a study by IHL Group. However, traditional retailers will need to adopt technology of their own to fight back against Amazon and stay relevant in this rapidly evolving world. Retailers should keep in mind the top reasons shoppers still visit physical stores over e-Commerce sites: Need their purchase now (23%); Want to touch and feel the product, or need expertise (20%); Don’t want to pay a delivery fee (14%); Want to support local businesses (12%); and Convenience (11%). Most of these desires can be met through a buy online, pick up in-store (BOPIS) program, according to Greg Buzek, Founder and President of IHL Services. This kind of service gives shoppers a reason to come in store, and can provide incentives that Amazon’s limited physical presence can’t match. “People shop at stores because they need it now, or they need more experience: to touch and feel and try it on,” said Buzek in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. “If you can take that ‘need it now’,…

The Vision Of Retail 2020: On-Track Or Off-The-Tracks?

It’s nearly here folks! We’re spiraling towards 2020, where the rubber meets the road on whether our many prolific pontifications of the retail future reside. Walking both the floor at NRF and the city stores of New York, it was hard not to look at our industry through this lens. After all, 2020 was to be the year that cataclysmic indictors came to fruition…where we’d stand back in awe of how far we’d come. So, how are we doing?

RIC19 Retail Innovator Award Nominations Are Open

The 2019 Retail Innovation Conference is a little more than three months away, but it’s not too early to nominate those who have rejuvenated and shaken up their retail businesses with outside-the-box ideas. For the sixth year, the Retail Innovator Award program is recognizing retail executives who are focused on driving change and positive disruption using innovative strategies and technologies. Retail TouchPoints invites you to nominate retail company executives, bloggers/authors and/or industry association executives for the honor. Nominations must highlight: The emerging retail area the executive helped improve; The specific retail strategy or idea launched; and Business results, positive outcomes or expected results following the implementation of the strategy.

2019 Retail Trends: Creating Meaningful Connection Online And On The Ground

Two iconic cinematic scenes come to mind when imagining the near-term future of retail: The first is from 2001: A Space Odyssey when Hal says, “I am putting myself to the fullest possible use, which is all I can think that any conscious entity can ever hope to do.” The second is from Jurassic Park when Robert Muldoon stated that the genetically engineered velociraptors “never attack the same place twice.” They were testing the fences for weaknesses, scientifically. “They remember.” Technology has finally surpassed our expectations of product performance while experiential design has been weighing down pro formas and scrambling site plans for the past decade. The deployment of technology to its fullest possible use has freed up designers and developers to test the fences for weaknesses in their retail offerings, amenities and customer experiences. Technology gives retailers more sales tools than ever before and experiential design requires more meaningful placemaking. I expect that dichotomy to heighten in 2019.

Holiday Wrap-Up: Mobile Dominates E-Commerce, Driving 66% Of Traffic

Mobile shopping eclipsed desktop for the first time during the 2018 holiday season: 48% of orders came from mobile devices while just 44% came from desktop or laptop computers, according to Salesforce. Mobile accounted for 66% of all e-Commerce traffic during the season, and 74% of shoppers browsed from a mobile phone on Christmas Day.

NRF2019: Innovation Lab Showcases Frictionless Self-Checkout, Facial Recognition And Last Mile Transparency

Photo credit: NRF For the third year the NRF Big Show put a spotlight on its top innovators, giving attendees tools and ideas for solving consumer needs in 2019 and beyond. The eclectic, hand-picked group of 50+ startups — broken out into customer convenience and customer experience sections — showcased new ways for retailers to manage some of their most pressing concerns, including: Removing friction from checkout; Providing targeted content to shoppers using facial recognition; Offering personalized assistance, whether in-store or online; and Adding transparency to last mile delivery.

Three Lessons From The 2018 Holiday Retail Season

With the dust settling from the holidays, it’s an important time to look back at consumer shopping behavior from the last month or so. For the retail industry, the busiest time of the year is both a welcome boost and a period of immense pressure to perform. The consumer shopping trends that play out during the holiday season are often indicative of the year to come and can signal areas of growth or future investment. After analyzing shopper behavior across our network of more than 6,600 brand and retail web sites, here’s what stands out:

How To Get Customers Back Into The Store

While the consumer retail experience appears to be leaning increasingly more to the digital side, 73% of consumers like to research online and buy in store. Contrarily, former “online-only” brands such as Amazon, Fabletics and Missguided (to name a few) are investing more in brick-and-mortar to create a holistic balance of benefits between their digital and physical presence. So if retail brands are working on balancing out their approach, why do we continually see well-known, long-standing brands closing down?

Brandbox Gives E-Commerce Brands A Brick-And-Mortar Testing Ground

Real estate firm Macerich is best known for operating malls and shopping centers throughout the U.S., but now the company is taking a new approach to retailing: bridging “high-growth digitally native brands” with brick-and-mortar. The company launched BrandBox in November 2018, a concept designed to house e-Commerce brands in malls on a rotating basis, giving them the chance to operate storefronts at an affordable cost. Brandbox launched its first concept at Tysons Corner Center in Tysons, Va., and it includes: Flexible space and lease terms: A BrandBox store ranges from 500 to 2,500 square feet, and leases run six to 12 months; Support on design and buildout, staffing and technology through partnerships with companies including Bobby Redd, FITCH, Vitra, RetailNext and Boomtown; Store designs tailored to each brand; Social and experiential marketing designed to drive foot traffic and brand awareness both online and offline; Access to an analytics dashboard; and Educational content via Brandbox.com.

Study: 66% Of Retailers Say Inaccurate Inventory Data Creates BOPIS Inconsistency

Retailers are well aware that an omnichannel approach to both the customer experience and their internal systems is now a basic business requirement: 94% of retailers already have, or plan to implement, a single unified commerce platform within three years, up from 81% in 2017, according to the 2019 POS/Customer Engagement Study from BRP.

How Brands Can Deliver On The Promise Of Curbside Experiences

Retail needs to change. As a whole, retailers have to become more attentive, and quicker to react to, the fast-rising expectations of their customers. For many, this transformation is already underway. Progress has been made in creating robust omnichannel experiences that give consumers more ways to interact with content, services, and products. These initiatives continue to evolve, but they have already shown their value. According to Harvard Business Review, omnichannel shoppers spend 4% more in brick-and-mortar stores and 10% more online than their single-channel counterparts.

Macy’s And Kohl’s Disappoint During Holiday, But Target Finishes Strong

Department stores came into the holiday season with high hopes, particularly as initial online Thanksgiving weekend numbers indicated that sales would be plentiful. However, recent holiday sales reports from Macy’s and Kohl’s reveal that though their expectations were great, the reality was anything but. However, one major retailer, Target, actually surpassed expectations. Macy’s saw shares drop as much as 19% on Jan. 10, after the retailer unveiled November-to-December same-store sales only increased 1.1%, with a lull occurring in the mid-December period. CEO Jeff Gennette said holiday sales disappointed in sportswear, sleepwear, jewelry and cosmetics, and Macy’s now expects no net sales growth for fiscal 2018, scaling back initial projections of 0.3% to 0.7% growth. The company also dialed back its earnings per share range, from $4.10 to $4.30 to $3.95 to $4.00.

Your 2019 Retail Innovation Playbook

Today more than ever, people seek out meaningful, shareable experiences in their daily lives. We see evidence of it everywhere. Travel, theme parks, fitness studios, concerts, movie theaters, casinos, restaurants. Each offers an experience. Each arms its recipient with a story to share. One segment that hasn’t kept up with this ‘rise of experience’ trend, however, is retail. People didn’t abandon shopping. Retailers abandoned shoppers. They took shoppers for granted, and assumed they would remain loyal to old habits. Look no further than the weekly bankruptcy headlines to get a feel for the damage this type of dogmatic thinking has done to the industry.

Study: Only 27.5% Of U.S. Retailers Offer BOPIS, Trailing UK, France, Germany

Buy online/pick up in-store (BOPIS) has been recognized as a key element driving seamless shopper journeys, but U.S. merchants remain a step or two behind their cross-border counterparts when it comes to deploying this service. While 37.6% of retailers across seven countries offered BOPIS services in 2018, only 27.5% offered BOPIS in the U.S., according to the OrderDynamics survey Omni-2000 Research: Global. The study assesses the omnichannel customer buying journey of more than 2,000 international retailers. The U.S. ranks behind all the other countries studied in the survey, including: UK (64% BOPIS adoption); France (50.5%); Germany and Austria (43%); Australia (31.4%); and Canada (31%).

How To Handle Unauthorized Sellers On Amazon

It’s fairly obvious that Amazon is growing by leaps and bounds. In fact, Amazon was estimated in July 2018 to own 49.1% of all online retail purchases in the U.S., and 5% of total retail purchases in the U.S. If you think about it, it’s pretty insane. And it doesn’t show any signs of stopping any time soon.
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