Card-Linked Offers Tap $115B Market

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By implementing card-linked offer programs, retail companies can gain automatic access to more than $115 billion that U.S. consumers spend annually during 1.7 billion transactions, using credit, debit and prepaid cards, according to Aite Group research.

By 2015, Aite Group estimates that retail companies participating in card-linked offers will be able to access at least 467 million different consumer accounts.

Unlike Daily Deals, card-linked offers require no paper vouchers or manual tracking. Card members are enrolled automatically, receive offers from their trusted banks and card issuers, and redeem offers just by swiping their cards.

To participate, merchants fund offers — such as cash back, points or miles — on eligible consumers transactions, through a card-linked advertising network. On the back end, banks, credit-card issuers and payment processors complete the transactions.

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Exclusive Survey: Cross-Channel Checkup

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ccc_survey_resultCross-Channel is now part of everyday language in the boardrooms and on the store floors of today’s most successful retail businesses. Cross-Channel customers are more profitable than single-channel customers, according to 96% of retailers surveyed in the recent Retail TouchPoints Cross-Channel Checkup survey. To meet the needs of this growing target group, retailers must employ a multi-faceted cross-channel strategy.

The Cross-Channel Checkup study can help guide retail companies in their efforts to create a comprehensive and consistent cross-channel strategy.

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Are Your Products Appealing And Easily Found Online?

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drc_ebook_channeladvisorProducts that surface first in an Amazon search have a leg up on the competition. To help brands reach that sometimes-elusive goal, ChannelAdvisor has identified 9 best practices to consider when creating search terms. The results speak for themselves: in June 2011, ChannelAdvisor’s customers experienced same-store sales growth of 69% on Amazon, 3-4 times the rate of eCommerce as a whole.

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The Optimized Mobile User Experience

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Dan_Lowden_headshotConvergent Commerce Series, Part II

Mobile commerce has quickly advanced past a cut-and-paste of a retailer’s ecommerce site—it is a viable, independent channel that needs its own strategy, unique capabilities, and personality if it is going to be a valuable part in a retailer’s cross-channel commerce strategy. In the first Convergent Commerce Series Article, Cross-Channel Plan for Mobile Engagement, the growing reasons to integrate a cross-channel strategy incorporating online, mobile, brick-and-mortar and social were highlighted with a specific focus on mobile. The most effective mobile platform consists of a mobile optimized website, downloadable rich app, and in-store mobile engagement. Incorporating mobile into the overall marketing strategy is an effective means to increase consumer awareness of a retailer’s various channels. In doing so, retailers can attract more visitors, generate more sales, leverage their marketing and merchandising spend, gain insight into customer purchase decisions, and heighten customer relations.

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CLOVR Amps Up Loyalty Initiatives Via Card-Linked Offers

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ClovrCLOVR Media is a universal card-linked offers (CLOs) platform, designed to allow retail and product discounts integration directly into banner, mobile, video and traditional advertising. Card-linked offers connect discounts directly to consumers’ credit or debit card. Once linked, the savings appear on the shoppers’ statement.

As an open platform, the CLOVR solution allows consumers to choose which card the savings will be applied to. In turn, brands do not need to choose participating bank or payment network partners in order to roll out a card-linked offer initiative.

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NCR Partners With Sparkfly; Rolls Out CPMobile

NCR Corporation recently announced the launch of CPMobile, a mobile retail management solution that enable retailers to engage more directly with consumers. The solution offers full integration with the Radiant CounterPoint retail POS system and is designed to help retailers sell regardless of location via its encased sled attachment with a bar code scanner and credit card swipe. CPMobile currently operates on iPod Touch or iPhone 4 using 3G or Wifi connection. Aside from providing mobile checkout, the solution can handle returns and item lookup. “We feel passionately about getting retailers and their sales staff out from behind the counter and onto the floor interacting with customers,” said Christian Nahas, Vice President of NCR Hospitality and Specialty Retail. “Going mobile gives retailers the freedom to creatively extend their business and selling strategy in new ways ― inside their store, on sidewalks and tent sales, community events and tradeshows — in places where the majority of retail customers gather and want to buy.”

In other news, in September 2011 NCR agreed to integrate the Sparkfly mobile marketing platform with its recently acquired Radiant POS software, including Aloha. The Sparkfly application is designed to deliver and redeem digital offers at the point-of-sale. “Sparkfly’s ability to enable personalized mobile promotions makes them an ideal partner to provide businesses with the best tools for building connections with consumers,” noted Andy Heyman, senior vice president, NCR Hospitality and Specialty Retail.

Retailigence Partners With Mobile Fringe To Enhance Customer Engagement In Shopping Centers

Retailigence Corporation recently announced its partnership with Toronto-based mobile marketing and consulting firm Mobile Fringe. The collaboration enhances North American shopping centers’ mCommerce efforts in time for the holiday season. Through the integration of Retailigence API, Mobile Fringe can now add on-site product search capabilities for shopping mall applications to ensure quality foot traffic as well as access intent data for marketing optimization and tenant acquisition purposes. “Bringing more foot-traffic to shopping centers and malls has a tremendous benefit to both retailers and the mall owners and operators,” said Jonathan Taylor, Head of Shopping and Lifestyle Centers for Retailigence. “By partnering with Mobile Fringe, Retailigence can combine the convenience of e-Commerce with the social experience of the mall.” Additionally, by partnering with Retailigence, Mobile Fringe can now offer a product search solution to retail and shopping center clients.

New Research: Costco Could Be Big Winner During 2011 Holiday Season

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Despite recent reports noting that increased e-Commerce income could contribute to a successful 2011 holiday shopping season for retailers, new analysis from BIGinsight research reveals that the opposite could be true.

In a September BIGinsight survey of more than 9,000 consumers, nearly 40% of adults 18 years and older noted that they plan to spend less on gifts this year, while 32.3% said they plan to spend the same amount. While only 5.9% anticipate spending more on friends and family this year, 23.4% of consumer said it’s too early to finalize their budget plans.

But at least one retailer may outpace others, if BIGinsight research proves true. Costco customers were the only survey respondents who said they are more positive about spending this year versus last year. Conversely, Sam’s Club shoppers are more negative about holiday spending this year, along with customers of Nordstrom, The Gap and Toys R Us. Macy’s and eBay shoppers remain neutral, reporting a similar spending outlook compared to 2010.
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Urgency Drives Flash Sale Success

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Daily deals have emerged as a unique alternative strategy for retailers to drive sales and revenue. By releasing must-have offers for a limited time, merchants, restaurants, salons and other consumer-oriented brands have relied on daily deals to boost brand awareness. Flash sale sites also have established a strong presence in the retail industry, with sites such as Rue LaLa and Gilt Groupe maximizing urgency and gamification concepts to increase purchases.

Primarily defined as a site that offers goods during sales that last only 24 hours, flash sale models have made inroads at retailers such as Neiman Marcus and Bloomingdale’s for special invitation-only sales. “The immediacy of flash sales and the overall variety are the most appealing factors,” said Nikki Baird, Managing Partner for Retail Systems Research (RSR). “It’s something new every time and they’re always a great deal. Most importantly, it’s saying to shoppers if you don’t act now, you might miss it.”

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Magic Quadrant For CRM Multichannel Campaign Management

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wp_drc_unicaGartner’s Magic Quadrant for CRM Multichannel Campaign Management spotlights multiple leaders in the market, including IBM-Unica, SAS, Teradata-Aprimo and Oracle. Chosen vendors feature an array of capabilities to support multichannel campaigns, while niche vendors focus efforts on SaaS delivery and web, mobile and social channels. This year, Gartner noted a developing trend in acquisitions as competitors step into marketing. By 2014, customer service, Web analytics, content management and social CRM vendors will take more than 40% of the market share for campaign management, according to predictions.

Complete the form below to download the “Magic Quadrant,” which reveals top vendors chosen based on functionality, market presence and momentum, overall visibility.

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