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Christmas 2013 proved to be a record-breaking period for several multichannel retailers as the trend for shopping online rather than in-store continued apace.
However for some brands the increase in online sales didn't necessarily translate to an increase in profits.
All these stats and more are rounded up in more detail below, including financial results from John Lewis and Debenhams, as well as data from IBM showing the rise in m-commerce...
When a customer signs up to an email newsletter they probably expect to receive a message from the brand welcoming them to the mailing list.
So it’s no surprise that welcome emails can achieve open rates of above 50%, as subscribers are less likely to see them as spam.
Therefore brands need to take steps to ensure they’re making the most of this opportunity by optimising the subject line and content to maximise opens and conversions.
There are a number of different goals that marketers can set out to achieve with their welcome email, whether it be simply thanking the user, attempting to collect more personal information, or nudging them towards a purchase.
This post will look at different ways brands can optimise their welcome emails for maximum impact.
Signing up to receive a retailer’s email newsletters always seems like a good idea at the time, but it’s almost inevitable that at some point the relationship will sour and you’ll be forced to search for the unsubscribe button.
And although marketers would obviously rather do everything in their power to prevent people from opting out of their email list, it’s in their best interest to make it a simple process otherwise it can harm the brand’s image and make it appear spammy.
To find out whether this is true in reality, I tried to opt-out of email newsletters from several fashion retailers.
Yesterday I wrote a blog looking at the different ways in which fashion retailers handled the process of capturing customer data when they signup to email alerts.
It turns out that the procedure varies quite drastically between sites, with some businesses requiring just your email while others need to know a great deal of personal information.
A day later and the welcome emails have arrived, however not all of the brands could be bothered to roll out the red carpet.
Though I signed up to 16 email newsletters only 11 welcome emails arrived, with ASOS, Schuh, Miss Selfridge, Boohoo and Office failing to get in touch.
Email is a consistently effective method of driving sales, so having a large database of customer addresses is a powerful tool for ecommerce businesses.
In fact our Email Census 2013 found that more than half of responding companies achieve 10% of their sales directly from email marketing.
All ecommerce businesses have a sign up form somewhere on their homepage, though the precise method of subscribing varies between each site.
To find out the most effective way of collecting customer information, I signed up to email newsletters from 16 major online fashion retailers.
Only a small proportion of shoppers will arrive at an ecommerce site knowing the exact product they’re looking for, while most will prefer to browse and consider different options.
As such sites need to give shoppers tools to search their product range and strip out the items they’re not interested in.
An effective site search function is obviously a key element, but product filters are also necessary if you want to deliver a decent user experience.
In fact kilt retailer buyakilt.com saw a 26% increase in conversions and a whopping 76.1% boost in revenue after implementing a product filter which gave visitors an option to shop by kilt type and kilt pattern.
There are just two days left to get your entries in for our new digital marketing and ecommerce awards, #TheDigitals, so to give some last minute inspiration I've rounded up six examples of effective multichannel marketing campaigns.
It follows a recent post that flagged up five great examples of email marketing excellence.
To avoid any accusations of bias, these are all examples that fall outside the eligibility period for the current awards, but should give an idea of the type of campaigns and projects we are looking for.
#TheDigitals are the new awards that recognise the best in digital marketing and ecommerce. Award entries must be submitted online before the deadline March 13, 2013.
Comet’s imminent fall into administration has once again highlighted the precarious position that many high street retailers find themselves in thanks to a flagging economy and a general consumer shift towards e-commerce.
The news is perhaps more surprising as, unlike many of its competitors, Comet had begun to alter its business model and integrate digital and mobile technology in-store as part of its multichannel strategy.
However analysts suggest it was too little too late, as successive owners had failed to see the benefits of e-commerce in a competitive market and the company also saw revenue from its audio visual products fall away as consumers moved to combined platforms on smartphones and tablets.
So Comet’s demise shouldn’t be seen as evidence that multichannel retailing can’t work on the high street.
In fact data from House of Fraser shows that the use of digital technologies in-store can improve both sales and the customer experience.
House of Fraser has successfuly implemented a buy and collect service which drives almost a third of its orders, while it has also been using mobile effevtively.
I've been asking Andy about the use of the web to drive in-store sales, and his advice for smaller offline retailers...
An effective multichannel strategy is the Holy Grail for retailers, yet the technology currently available only allows us to join up part of the customer journey.
At a talk at Econsultancy’s Future Of Digital Marketing event yesterday, House of Fraser E-commerce director Andy Harding laid out his predictions for how multichannel marketing will develop in the next few years.
The retailer was relatively late to e-commerce, launching its first transactional site in 2007 followed by its first mobile site in 2011.
The desktop site was then rebranded in July 2011, with online sales now accounting for more than 10% of total revenue.
House of Fraser is offering a 10% discount to students who ‘like’ the brand on Facebook.
The social media campaign mirrors a discount that is already available in-store as House of Fraser (HoF) tries to bring consistency to its online and offline offerings.
High street retailer House of Fraser has starting working with real-time attribution and tag management company TagMan to help it plan, implement and track online campaigns.
The company, which operates 63 stores as well as Houseoffraser.co.uk, says it plans to use TagMan's system to improve its marketing effectiveness.