Why does customer engagement matter for retailers?

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The retail industry is a fiercely competitive one. The rise of eCommerce means that consumers can, and do, easily shop around for better deals, while today’s desire for speed and convenience risks eroding any sense of customer engagement and loyalty. In 2016 we saw a number of high street casualties falling into trouble as they struggled to keep pace with customers’ expectations and offer the right products.

This means marketers need to find ways to both retain their existing customers and...

By Karen Wheeler, 18 January 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Commerce, Customer Experience, E-Commerce.

Four ways to create a unified customer experience in a post-channel world

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Every marketer knows the route to true consumer engagement no longer runs along a single path. An explosion of innovative technologies, channels, and formats has created a complex, connected ecosystem where interactions are fragmented and unrestricted. Keeping up with the needs and wants of today’s consumers through the delivery of timely, relevant marketing communications requires marketers to convert ever-expanding streams of user data into actionable strategies.

Yet by...

By Joanna O'Connell, 16 January 2017, 1 comment. Categories: Commerce, Customer Experience, Data-driven marketing.

Don’t be afraid to embrace the new ‘vampire economy’

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Another Halloween may have been and gone, but it seems that the UK population is still rife with vampires – vampire shoppers, that is. According to Barclaycard, there is a growing ‘Vampire Economy,’ as one in three Brits now spend more money shopping online at night, compared to five years ago. The evolution of technological devices has given...

By Saima Alibhai, 12 January 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Commerce, E-Commerce.

Black Friday: There’s an elephant in the room

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From a brand marketing point of view Black Friday is a disaster – it’s short termism at it’s worst, with little or no regard for the long term damage to reputation and profitability. 

Stand back and look at it dispassionately, and it’s crazy that a frantic day of knock down prices and brawls over flat screen TVs was ever seen as holding the key to tipping into annual profit. 

A different approach

In truth Black Friday is a not-so-subtle hint that a different...

By Frank Schoutissen, 23 November 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Commerce.

How a unified data strategy unlocks hidden sales opportunities

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Dissect almost any broken or damaged relationship, and you will find a breakdown in communication:

  • The partner who feels unloved;
  • The surprise resignation of the star salesperson who feels taken for granted;
  • The employee who is injured because of inadequate training; and
  • The community who is aggrieved because they don’t feel they were consulted.

All are the results of bad or non-existent communication.

These communication failures can be even worse when third parties are involved. They impose personal opinions, politics and Chinese whispers which all...

By Jakob Bignert, 04 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Commerce, Data-driven marketing, Data Science, E-Commerce.

How BHS can become a phoenix from the ashes with its relaunch

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We all love a story with a happy ending, especially when good triumphs over bad, heroes overcome villains and twists and turns keep us on our toes. The story of British Home Stores, or BHS, is one of these stories. 

The iconic British brand, established in 1928, succumbed to the challenge of physical and digital retailing earlier this year and gave up the ghost. With tired stores, confused product lines and jaded consumers, it lost itself along the way somewhere: it became a bit...

By Kieran Kilmartin, 30 September 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Case Studies, Commerce, E-Commerce.

So, have you started thinking about Black Friday?

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Winter is coming.

Fans of HBO’s Game of Thrones will be quite familiar with this warning, usually uttered by the Starks, lords of the North, to be prepared for the cold, darkness and hardship coming to their land. For retailers, the winter months are front of mind as well, but for much more cheerful reasons.

Over the last few years, Black Friday has become a prominent feature in the British retail calendar, and for many retailers, it’s now the biggest day of the year in terms of...

By Saima Alibhai, 31 August 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Commerce.

How has Amazon beaten out bricks and mortar retail brands?

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The Direct Marketing Association recently revealed a list of the 20 top brands in a customer engagement report, and although only three eCommerce brands were featured, Amazon claimed the number one spot.

Named as the favourite by one in four consumers, Amazon has successfully found the balance between offering a wide range of products with ensuring customer satisfaction. But how have they managed to beat out bricks and mortar which is traditionally the customer...

By Vijay Kanda, 04 August 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Commerce.

How digital can help retail brands weather the political storm

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Recent political events in the UK have left all service sectors facing an uncertain future. New ways of working are a necessity, not a prerequisite, as retailers and restauranteurs adjust to a changed landscape.

The pace of innovation across sectors in the last five years has been quicker than in any of the previous 20 put together. Mobile, 4G and a rise in eCommerce behaviours has created a new breed of consumer; demanding, impatient, promiscuous. However, this could prove...

By Helen Slaven, 08 July 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Commerce, Customer Experience, E-Commerce.

Luxury brands should embrace eCommerce to engage customers, report says

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eCommerce is an opportunity many luxury retailers have been hesitant to embrace. But with the market set to explode, new research shows that thanks to information about their customers’ online activity luxury retailers have the opportunity to know 80% of their in-store customers by name.

The research, Digital Frontier 2016: Digital luxury is turning mainstream, by Contactlab in conjunction with Exane BNP Paribas, showed that brands must work harder to embrace the opportunities of connecting eCommerce...

By Liz Morrell, 15 June 2016, 1 comment. Categories: Advertising, Commerce, E-Commerce.

Facebook launches new mobile advertising products for bricks-and-mortar retail brands

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Facebook is launching new mobile advertising solutions aimed at helping to get customers into stores when they're out and about.

The new solutions will also be able to assess the impact of business' Facebook mobile advertising campaigns through the measurement of shop visits and instore sales.

The company has launched a native shop locator within its Local Awareness adverts which show people the shops nearest to them and offer relevant calls to action such as ‘get...

By Liz Morrell, 15 June 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Advertising, Advertising Technology, Commerce.

Only a third of retailers have tried beacon marketing tech, report says

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Retail  brands must focus on four key areas in 2016 that include continued integration of instore and online customer experiences, according to the latest Future of Retail study from Walker Sands.

The study, which showed a general plateauing of retail activity this year, surveyed 1,400 consumers in the US and found that seven in ten of them were willing to opt into instore tracking and mobile push notifications if retailers properly incentivised them to do so. Only 6% of consumers had...

By Liz Morrell, 15 June 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Best Practice, Commerce, E-Commerce.

Spending on online fraud prevention to soar by 30% by 2020

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eCommerce merchants and financial institutions are set to spend $9.2bn on preventing fraud by 2020 – a 30% rise on current levels.

The figures, from new report Online Payment Fraud: Key Vertical Strategies and Management 2015-16 by Juniper Research, suggest such companies will be working particularly hard to prevent fraudsters targeting mobile transactions.

This is because many companies have yet to apply the same levels of protection to mobile as they have to desktop, it...

By Liz Morrell, 14 June 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Commerce, E-Commerce.

What Microsoft’s $26.2bn LinkedIn acquisition may mean for marketers

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Microsoft dropped a bombshell today when it announced it would buy professional network LinkedIn for $26.2bn (£18.5bn).

In a blog post and video outlining the move, CEOs of both companies - LinkedIn’s Jeff Weiner and Microsoft’s Satya Nadella - asserted LinkedIn would remain independent, but both would work closely together.

Despite...

By Rachael Power, 13 June 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Commerce, Social Media Marketing.

Salesforce snaps up cloud commerce company Demandware for $3bn

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Salesforce has entered into a definitive agreement to buy cloud commerce platform Demandware for $2.8bn (£1.94bn).

Demandware is an industry leading enterprise cloud commerce platform, specialising in personalisation for consumers. Its current customers include Marks & Spencers and L'Oreal, among other big names. 

Saleseforce will start tender offer for all outstanding shares of Demandware for $75.00 per share, in cash. The...

By Rachael Power, 01 June 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Commerce.

Slow delivery leads to online basket abandonment in 60% of cases

For retailers desperate to control their whole online customer journey, the issue of delivery has always been a stumbling block where retailers face basket abandonment and potential damage to their brand.  

But a new survey shows that 60% of consumers in the US said they had abandoned their shopping cart because the retailer offered slow delivery options.

The study, of 650 respondents in the US and carried out by same-day delivery firm Dropoff, showed that 97% of customers said speed is at least...

By Liz Morrell, 23 May 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Best Practice, Commerce, E-Commerce.

How to protect your brand in China's growing digital marketplace

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The impact of the internet on productivity and growth in the Chinese marketplace has been nothing short of transformational and the revenue potential that this emerging eCommerce market offers makes China a very tempting digital business proposition. 

According to a report from the McKinsey Global Institute, the projections are that new internet apps could fuel seven to 22% of China’s incremental GDP...

By Charlie Abrahams, 16 May 2016, 1 comment. Categories: Branding, Commerce, E-Commerce.

Poor digital experiences lead to lost customers, research suggests

A poor digital experience is losing customers for businesses that fail to invest, according to research from Actual Experience.

With digital content now key in terms of digital marketing strategies a failure to deliver such content in a quality manner will lose customers. Actual Experience’s report shows that nearly 80% of business leaders have admitted switching to a competitor and aborting shopping online because of a poor digital experience.

Customer churn is seen as the number one fallout for more...

Why B2B companies need to do more to reap digital rewards

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B2B businesses need to do more to drive up their revenue share from digital, according to a new report from Accenture Interactive. 

The report, which surveyed organisations of more than 1,000 full-time employees to analyse their digital efforts and effectiveness, showed that 40% of B2B businesses earn less than 10% of their sales from digital, a number which is much lower for businesses serving the B2C market. Yet for the same amount more than half of revenue flows through digital...

By Liz Morrell, 28 April 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Branding, Commerce.