Big Data’s Role In The Loyalty Equation

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This is Part 3 of Retail TouchPoints’ three-part Customer Loyalty Report. This feature spotlights the rise of the SoLoMo shopper and how today’s retailers are keeping pace with educated and hyper-connected consumers. Part 3 identifies how Big Data offers a challenge and unique opportunity for merchants to better connect with shoppers and garner long-term loyalty.

customer_loyaltyFeatureShoppers are growing more comfortable using digital tools to research potential purchases, price compare and share ratings and reviews. As a result, the overall dynamic and relationship between retailers and their customers is shifting. Retailers are seeking ideal strategies to not only offer the best prices and merchandise, but also create memorable shopping experiences, tailored to shoppers’ preferences.

Due to the variety channels at consumers’ fingertips — including mobile, social media and the web — merchants are facing a daunting sea of data. This sea, according to Chris Cunnane, Research Analyst for Retail and Hospitality at Aberdeen Group, is becoming more difficult to manage, largely due to obstacles in overall data collection and analysis processes.

“Retailers are pulling customer data from myriad sources — online, social, mobile, call center, and in-store,” Cunnane told Retail TouchPoints. “While collecting this information is important, without appropriate data collection guidelines in place, retailers will be sitting on disjointed data streams without a way to make sense of anything.”

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Retail TouchPoints Top 10 Articles Of 2012

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Top10
Retailers want to learn about the latest technology innovations and find out which retailers are implementing strategies around those innovations. When Retail TouchPoints (RTP) published the Top 20 Articles Of 2011 in December, articles receiving the most views were case studies featuring success stories from leading retailers. This remains true as RTP takes a look at the top stories for 2012, through mid-July.

Case studies covering Benjamin Moore and David’s Bridal reached the top 10 in 2012, along with a few topics that around technology innovations including gamification, mobile technology and social commerce. Additionally, articles that forecast retail trends in social, location-based and mobile marketing, also known as SoLoMo, were popular.

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Case Study: Macaroni Grill Chooses Aerohive for PCI Compliance and Wi-Fi Management

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Screen_Shot_2012-07-30_at_3.02.27_PMWhen committing to Wi-fi within restaurants and stores, companies must consider the security ramifications. In order to improve the productivity of mobile area directors, Macaroni Grill sought to deploy wifi throughout its restaurants.

Now deployed in 184 restaurants, the Aerohive Private Pre-Shared Key provides PCI compliance using encryption and authentication. With the system in place, area directors are able to seamlessly and securely log into the corporate network, while traveling from site to site.

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Tips For Mending The Gaps In Consumer Experience

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IBob_Fettert’s not easy being a consumer-facing brand these days. After years building a company based on one consumer pathway, the mobile, app, email, social, geo-located, connected TV, real-time bargain-hungry consumer is now touching brands in more ways and with more diverse behavior patterns than any company can keep up with. That’s 100 years of organizational design shot to hell.

Most of today’s prominent brands were built from the ground up with departments focused on specific aspects of manufacturing, selling, marketing, merchandising and service. These new consumer journeys require interaction with multiple components of said organization and no doubt, most organizations still don’t even have the most basic cross-discipline integrations set up. Remember when you couldn’t buy something online and return it in store? Wait.  Still? Really?

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Linkable Networks Releases SKU-Level Card-Linked Offers

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mylinkables-screenBest-in-class retailers are delivering a more seamless deal collection and redemption process with card-linked offers, which replace standard coupons and printed vouchers with automatic, digital savings linked to shoppers’ credit and debit cards. Until recently, these discount offers were broad-based, such as dollars-off a total purchase.

Linkable Networks’ new MyLinkables capability now allows retailers to target and link SKU-level offers to consumers’ credit/debit cards, and engage shoppers in a more direct and efficient manner. 

Among the benefits, consumers save on top brands and retailers throughout the country, from restaurants and specialty retail to convenience and grocery stores, and can view link-enabled ads across a variety of media properties while browsing online.

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Grocery Chain Rolls Out Cloud-Based Payment Solution

C&K Market Inc. has implemented Retalix’s Connected Payments, a cloud-based, software-as-a-service (SaaS) payments system that, among other features, removes all cardholder data from stores. C&K Market’s goal is to reduce equipment, transaction, technology and PCI compliance expenses across its 61 Ray’s Food Place, Ray’s Shop Mart and C&K Market banners.

Connected Payments helps C&K Markets better manage compliance-related transaction data, while improving overall POS efficiency and reducing costs, noted Alan Nidiffer, CIO of C&K Market Inc., in a press release. “The Connected Payments subscription-based model eliminates all of C&K’s up-front license costs for the new [capabilities], while providing operational efficiency from centralized online reporting and analysis. The result is optimal transaction data security,” he said. “In addition, Connected Payments helps us reduce our electronic payments costs overall, and provides centralized reporting that improves our operational performance.”

MasterCard, Gilt City Team To Offer More Priceless Experiences

MasterCard and Gilt City, the local lifestyle web site from Gilt Groupe, have teamed to offer registered users of U.S. MasterCard Priceless Cities programs additional and exclusive travel, culinary and entertainment offers. Gilt City will provide Priceless Cities users with a unique range of city adventures, including “no reservation needed” and chef’s table restaurant experiences, limited-time offers such as meet-and-greet sessions with artists, and opening night tickets to plays and concerts.

“As part of the Priceless Cities programs, we look forward to offering MasterCard’s millions of cardholders with coveted experiences that create a sense of escape, discovery and indulgence at insider prices,” said Susan Lyne, Chairman for Gilt Groupe.

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Listrak Launches Visual Analytics Platform For More Effective Email Marketing

Listrak, an email marketing solutions provider, announced the launch of Listrak 5.0, a visual e-Commerce analytics platform that helps marketers reduce creative design time, more easily segment and reach target customers, and correlate revenues with specific email marketing campaigns.

The redesigned platform features Listrak’s new Customer Lifecycle Grid, a visual analytics dashboard which employs past order history and click-stream data to produce an at-a-glance segmentation of customer shopping behavior. This feature helps drive increased customer lifetime value and prolonged subscriber, and is the first content management and analytics application of its kind in the industry, according to a Listrak press release.

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Rumor Mill: Amazon Exploring Same-Day Delivery

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Retail_Wire
Editor’s Note:
This article is an excerpt from one of RetailWire’s recent online discussions. Each business morning on RetailWire.com, retail industry executives get plugged in to the latest news and issues with key insights from a panel of retail industry experts.

On July 10, 2012, The Financial Times reported that the reason Amazon is setting up scores of distribution centers across the U.S. is so it can start making same-day deliveries.

Amazon hasn’t discussed same-store delivery, and told the San Francisco Chronicle it doesn’t comment on “rumors and speculation.”

The possible move would amount to a major shift for the online giant, which has long sought to plant its massive distribution centers in tax-friendly states to avoid paying sales tax. Indeed, [Amazon’s move] may be prompted by several states passing laws closing the tax-free loophole in recent years. Amazon has also surprised many by reaching agreements with several states, and some now see this as part of its warehouse proliferation goal.

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