tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/high-street Latest High street content from Econsultancy 2017-05-22T09:45:00+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69098 2017-05-22T09:45:00+01:00 2017-05-22T09:45:00+01:00 Could AI revolutionize high street retail as well as ecommerce? Ben Davis <p>Fashion, for example, may be getting faster (quicker production time and fulfilment) but the knack is still in predicting the season's trends and riding the wave. In-store merchandising, too, is a matter of long-honed instincts as to what should go where.</p> <h3>Blending art and science</h3> <p>What I'm saying is there's a lot of art in the high-street retail business (particularly fashion), and it attracts suitably artistic people. Yes, sales and seasonal analysis comes into it, but it's a ways behind some of the technology emerging in online shopping, for example: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67629-in-programmatic-advertising-what-are-cmps-and-dcos/">Dynamic creative optimisation</a> in retargeted advertising</li> <li> <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68921-an-introduction-to-ai-powered-ecommerce-merchandising/">Automated merchandising optimisation</a> (menus, sorts, categories)</li> <li> <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68777-10-uses-of-computer-vision-in-marketing-customer-experience/">Visual product discovery</a>, such as on Sunglass Hut's website which recommends glasses that share visual affinity with pairs you have previously selected</li> <li>Conversational commerce, such as the much covered <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68770-an-introduction-to-ai-and-customer-service/">North Face online shop</a> which asked customers where they were going and recommended suitable jackets</li> <li>A similar personal shopper style experience on 1-800-Flowers' website which asks questions and recommends gifts</li> </ul> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4883/Navigation_2.gif" alt="automated merchandising" width="615"></p> <p><em>Automated merchandising</em></p> <p>Whilst some of this ecommerce tech is still in its early days, automated merchandising optimisation is of particular interest. Ecommerce companies with big product catalogues (far bigger than stores can hold) are able to optimise sales by presenting products that each user is most likely to buy.</p> <p>This is effectively the same job that a product buyer or retail analyst has, but machine learning may use data points that vary from the visual appearance of products to customer demographics or browsing history, from weather to time, from price to <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67052-a-copywriter-s-template-for-excellent-product-page-descriptions/">product descriptions</a>.</p> <p>The question is, why can't this machine learning approach be applied to the high street store? Self-learning algorithms creating geographical segments and looking at lots of latent variables in order to choose what products are placed in store?</p> <p>Obviously, the personalised aspect of ecommerce cannot wholly be replicated at scale in store, but what about the data-backed merchandising?</p> <p>Well, I'm being a bit disingenuous, because there are companies that are already starting to look at high street product inventory and prices in this way.</p> <h3>Predicting trends, online to offline</h3> <p>What if a computer could ingest fashion magazines and influencer Instagram feeds, along with a fashion retailer's first party data (who is buying what) and help that particular brand pick the styles for the upcoming season?</p> <p>This is not quite happening right now, but an analytics company, <a href="https://edited.com/">Edited</a>, is doing something similar, using natural language processing and computer vision to create a searchable database of millions of products from many brands. This database can be used to inform buying strategy, with brands able to investigate their competitor's pricing and product assortments.</p> <p><a href="https://www.stylumia.com/">Stylumia</a> is another company that offers something similar, analysing unstructured data and images to form trends analysis.</p> <p>This surely hints at a future where ecommerce and social media is a sort of data playground, allowing brands to test certain products, and formulate the right plan for their stores, where (let's not forget) the great majority of sales are made.</p> <p>Once a business' own consumer data is factored in, the technology may become even more powerful.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/6221/edited.png" alt="edited" width="615"></p> <p><em>Illustration of the sort of data Edited compiles</em></p> <h3>An auto-merchandised high street store?</h3> <p>In a recent roundtable discussion at Econsultancy and Marketing Week's Digital Therapy Live event, I spoke to some retailers who were intrigued about machine learning and its ability to drive commercial decision making.</p> <p>What if real-time weather data, footfall and sales were used to merchandise a store each day. Could positions in the store be formalised in the data set, too? Could store tracking be used to analyse where people are browsing, and then add this into the algorithmic mix, too?</p> <p>There is an obvious counter to many of these questions – would it really be that much more efficient than the brain of an expert human, and wouldn't it be far too expensive?</p> <p>At the moment, maybe these questions only make sense online, where data is more manageable. In an offline world, without an all-seeing computer eye understanding everything going on in a store, the number of variables involved may be prohibitive. </p> <p>What's much more likely, in the long run, is the concept that IBM Watson Marketing calls 'augmented intelligence'. Rather than letting a computer optimise merchandising in stores, technology such as that provided by Edited will get more and more sophisticated and be used as an aid to human buyers and merchandising, cutting down on product gambles and costly mistakes, and making sure product assortments are statistically likely to sell.</p> <p>It's exciting times in retail.</p> <p><em>For more on in-store tech, see: <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69095-how-coca-cola-is-using-smartphone-data-to-personalise-in-store-ads/">How Coca-Cola is using smartphone data to personalise in-store ads</a></em></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69095 2017-05-18T14:10:00+01:00 2017-05-18T14:10:00+01:00 How Coca-Cola is using smartphone data to personalise in-store ads Nikki Gilliland <p>It’s not such a far-fetched notion. Recently, Coca-Cola started using Google technologies to target consumers in US grocery stores. So, how does it work exactly? Here’s a bit more on the story.</p> <h3>Ads in grocery aisles</h3> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68051-six-case-studies-that-show-how-digital-out-of-home-advertising-is-changing/" target="_blank">Digital out-of-home advertising</a> typically uses contextual data to display relevant ads, e.g. a Coke billboard that changes depending on the weather. Digital signs (such as those at bus stops or in buildings) also use data in this way.</p> <p>The problem for brands like Coca-Cola, however, is the high cost of these ads, combined with a lack of any real <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67070-why-personalisation-is-the-key-to-gaining-customer-loyalty/" target="_blank">personalisation</a> or targeting to individual consumers. This is where Google-integrated ‘endcaps’ come in – a term used to describe advertisements at the front of grocery store aisles. (Endcaps are fairly common in the US, but less so in the UK.) </p> <p>These endcaps serve ads to passing consumers based on their smartphone data, using a combination of Google’s DoubleClick and location-based technologies.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/6150/Endcaps.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="439"></p> <p>The data includes anything from your basic gender or age demographic to previous browsing history. So, an ad could change from Coke Zero to Glacéau Smartwater if it recognises a preference for healthier products, for instance.</p> <p>The aim is to connect and engage with consumers to drive sales of the brand in retail stores – however Coca-Cola has also suggested that it benefits other brands and products within the same category (in this case soft drinks). This sounds somewhat improbable, but moving on. </p> <h3>Creepy or enhanced customer experience?</h3> <p>The real question is: Will consumers will be happy to receive super targeted ads, or does this level of personalisation veer into creepy territory? This generally remains one of the biggest issues for marketers, with <a href="http://www.pewinternet.org/2016/01/14/privacy-and-information-sharing/" target="_blank">research from Pew</a> suggesting that consumers do not want to trade privacy for personalisation. </p> <p>It found that people are particularly negative about targeted ads if they are unaware of what is happening or do not provide outright consent. However, the study also found that consumers are more willing to accept data tracking if ads are highly relevant or beneficial, e.g. offering discounts or coupons.</p> <p>Fortunately, Coca-Cola’s endcaps also involve communicating wirelessly with devices to send tailored offers or coupons, also meaning people do not have to log-in or stand still. This could be one benefit, but it is unlikely to satisfy all consumers.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/6151/Google_tech_Coca_Cola.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="544"></p> <h3>Will it catch on?</h3> <p>While this example from Coke appears to be a first, it’s clear that tracking physical consumers is becoming a pressing concern for the retail industry as a whole. </p> <p>Online retailers can easily hone strategies based on metrics like click-throughs and <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67120-12-ways-to-reduce-basket-abandonment-on-your-ecommerce-site/" target="_blank">basket abandonment rates</a> – so it’s understandable that offline retailers want to build a similar picture of consumer behaviour. </p> <p>Interestingly, a report by <a href="https://dxc.turtl.co/story/55ee93d8bbfd077f2d4e22ee" target="_blank">CSC</a> recently suggested that as many as 30% of retailers are now using facial-recognition technology to track customers in-store. By comparing certain facial characteristics with browsing or buying behaviour, retailers are able to predict intent and deliver relevant ads. Unsurprisingly, CSC also reports that 33% of consumers think the technology is intrusive, while 56% do not even know what it is.</p> <p>Whether consumers are creeped out or keen for this kind of in-store tech – with Coca-Cola set to roll out endcaps to thousands of US stores – we could be seeing much more of it in future.</p> <p><em><strong>Related reading:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67705-what-s-now-next-for-digital-technology-in-retail-stores/">What's now &amp; next for digital technology in retail stores?</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67418-what-is-location-based-advertising-why-is-it-the-next-big-thing/" target="_blank">What is location-based advertising &amp; why is it the next big thing?</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67038-11-ways-to-track-online-to-offline-conversions-and-vice-versa/" target="_blank">11 ways to track online to offline conversions (and vice versa)</a></em></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69093 2017-05-16T09:45:00+01:00 2017-05-16T09:45:00+01:00 How WAH Nails is using VR to enhance the salon experience Nikki Gilliland <p>For WAH Nails, a London-based nail brand and boutique, a desire to speed up the process prompted the creation of a virtual reality app for its new Soho salon.</p> <p>Here's a bit more on how WAH is using VR, as well as how it fits into the brand’s wider strategy to dazzle and delight young beauty consumers. </p> <h3>Functional rather than gimmicky</h3> <p>There are thousands of options to choose from when you visit a nail salon like Wah. It’s not just colour either – there are endless combinations of designs, overlays, and shades, meaning it's difficult for customers to even know where to start.</p> <p>So much so in fact that WAH decided to create a virtual reality app in order to streamline the entire process. However, the brand’s founder Sharmadean Reid was adamant that the technology be something customers would use long-term – not just as a one-off gimmick.</p> <p>The result was the WAH Nails Virtual Reality Designer – an app that works with a Samsung Gear VR headset and on a Leap Motion device. </p> <p>When customers place their hands in front of the headset, they are able to select their skin colour and experiment with various digital designs. They can then either print it on the WAH Nail Printer, order the colours to be delivered at home, or send the designs to the in-house nail technician to use there and then. </p> <p>By showcasing designs in this way, the aim is to help customers better visualise how the nails will look in real life, as well as encourage greater experimentation. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/6102/WAH_VR.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="434"></p> <h3>Extension of the experience-focused salon</h3> <p>It’s unsurprising that technology is a core component of WAH’s Soho salon. The brand has had a digital-first mind-set from the start, using its blog and social media to build on word of mouth popularity.</p> <p>The brand first began with a boutique in Dalston before expanding with a pop-up shop in Topshop. Gradually going on to establish a cult-like status, its two storey ‘salon of the future’ in Soho is a physical representation of the brand’s online presence. </p> <p>So, not only does the VR app serve a functional purpose, but it also fits in with the immersive nature of the entire salon experience. As part of the ‘play and discover’ area, it complements the bottom floor which includes a cocktail bar and hangout area for customers to enjoy before or after they’ve had their manicure.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/6103/WAH_London.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="485"></p> <h3>Engaging with target demographic</h3> <p>It’s not unusual for beauty brands to use retail spaces to create immersive experiences. Estee Lauder’s flagship Carnaby Street store, Estee Edit, is just one example, using original features like a ‘selfie wall’ to engage customers.</p> <p>WAH Nails is similar. However, it is even more dedicated to reflecting the style and interests of its young demographic – typically made up of Generation Z and young millennials. </p> <p>Again, the VR app is an extension of this, taking inspiration from popular video games like the Sims and even Kim Kardashian: Hollywood. Perhaps the latter has been an inspiration in an entrepreneurial sense, too. Last year, WAH’s founder Sharmadean Reid also released a collection of ready-to-wear clothing and accessories for ASOS, reflecting Kardashian's forays into ecommerce and technology. </p> <p>Incorporating a mix of slogan phrases and luxury sports-wear, it was guaranteed to appeal to the teens and twenty-somethings who already love the brand.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/6104/WAH_London_ASOS.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="314"></p> <h3>Will nail salons become even more high-tech?</h3> <p>WAH’s VR app is certainly innovative, but it is interesting to note that it’s not exactly what the brand originally set out to create. </p> <p>The initial idea was an augmented reality app that would overlay nail designs onto hands – much like Snapchat face filters. However, with the realisation that this technology did not yet exist (and with too many issues over the similarity of skin and nail colour) the VR app was the second-best option.</p> <p>While AR for nails might be too progressive at this stage, perhaps it is a glimpse of what might be possible in future. Just like nail colours, the possibilities are seemingly endless.   </p> <p><em><strong>Related articles:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69016-why-beauty-brands-are-betting-on-augmented-reality/" target="_blank">Why beauty brands are betting on augmented reality</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67834-why-virtual-reality-is-the-ultimate-storytelling-tool-for-marketers/" target="_blank">Why Virtual Reality is the ultimate storytelling tool for marketers</a></em></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68401-virtual-reality-content-marketing-s-next-big-trend/" target="_blank"><em>Virtual reality: Content marketing’s next big trend</em></a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69071 2017-05-09T11:00:00+01:00 2017-05-09T11:00:00+01:00 M&S to trial grocery delivery service: Will it take off? Nikki Gilliland <h3>Growing UK delivery sector</h3> <p>According to <a href="https://igd.com/About-us/Media/IGD-news-and-press-releases/Online-grocery-delivers-huge-potential/" target="_blank">IGD</a>, Britain’s online food market is expected to nearly double to £17.2bn by 2020. It’s not just the big supermarkets that are involved, of course. The likes of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68508-the-four-goals-underpinning-deliveroo-s-growth-strategy/" target="_blank">Deliveroo</a> and HelloFresh – companies that offer takeaway options and <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67861-four-reasons-recipe-box-brands-are-delivering-success/" target="_blank">at-home recipes kits</a> – are also taking a slice of the pie. </p> <p>Meanwhile, M&amp;S has been missing out. </p> <p>Despite the retailer’s previous insistence that its product-range and basket-size is too small to offer a legitimate and price-worthy service, the emergence and popularity of the delivery market is bound to have been a factor in its decision to get involved.</p> <p>The question is – how will M&amp;S convince customers that it’s worth paying for a proper delivery? </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5947/grocery_delivery.jpg" alt="" width="700" height="466"></p> <h3>Changing consumer perceptions</h3> <p>With its ‘dine in for 2’ range, M&amp;S Food is typically seen as a top-up shopping option or a special occasion store. That being said, it is a very profitable one, with M&amp;S’ clothing business dwindling in light of the success of its food arm.</p> <p>Last month, the retailer confirmed it was opening an additional 34 food shops following a review of its UK store portfolio. Meanwhile, it already operates an ecommerce service for its wines by the case, as well as party food, homeware, flowers and other non-food items.</p> <p>As well as a focus on physical stores, M&amp;S has also been concentrating on food in marketing terms. Interestingly, news about its delivery trial aligns with a new campaign that aims to get consumers to think of Marks and Spencer in a different light.</p> <p>The ‘Spend it Well’ campaign is more about promoting brand values than its product-range, telling consumers that life is too short not to spend time and money on the things that matter the most. </p> <p>This, alongside clear investment in physical food stores, is perhaps a sign that M&amp;S is serious about getting consumers to view it as more than just a place to pick up a sandwich.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/hYbh7PbYq5g?wmode=transparent" width="940" height="529"></iframe></p> <h3>Potential partnerships</h3> <p>So, back to the biggest obstacle of a viable business model.</p> <p>According to reports, M&amp;S is currently in talks with Ocado about a potential partnership to handle order fulfilment. The most likely scenario would also involve M&amp;S products being available on Ocado’s website, rather than a new standalone website being set up for M&amp;S. </p> <p>This would solve the problem of small-basket values, giving consumers the option to pick and choose from Marks and Spencer alongside other food brands. </p> <p>However, with Ocado currently having a deal in place with both Waitrose and Morrisons, it’s not yet clear whether it’s actually possible to bring M&amp;S into the mix. Ocado’s current contract with Waitrose specifies that 70% of all non-own brand products sold have to come from Waitrose. If M&amp;S is classed as a brand – the deal will be unable to go ahead.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5948/M_S.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="528"></p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>With a proper logistics model, success with online grocery delivery is not totally implausible for M&amp;S.</p> <p>Even if consumers do not buy into the idea of a weekly shop, perhaps the introduction of speciality delivery services could prove enticing. If the popularity of its seasonal food is anything to go by - with Christmas and Easter ranges typically seeing shoppers flock to buy a large amount of ingredients in one go – consumers are likely to lap up the added convenience if it is on offer.</p> <p><em><strong>Related articles:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67883-marks-spencer-what-does-putting-the-customer-at-the-heart-of-everything-mean/" target="_blank">Marks &amp; Spencer: what does 'putting the customer at the heart of everything' mean?</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68355-how-online-grocery-retailers-are-capitalising-on-the-need-for-convenience/" target="_blank">How online grocery retailers are capitalising on the need for convenience</a></em></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69063 2017-05-05T13:07:06+01:00 2017-05-05T13:07:06+01:00 10 juicy digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <h3>Ecommerce decision-makers bank on new tech</h3> <p>A new study from Salmon suggests ecommerce decision-makers are increasingly investing in new technology like IoT and virtual reality.</p> <p>Research found that 61% are currently investing in IoT (Internet of Things) enablement, while 69% plan to invest in robots and 60% in machine learning within the next five years.</p> <p>What’s more, 74% of decision-makers plan to switch ecommerce platforms in the next 12 to 18 months, with 92% of organisations recognising the need to better analyse data to improve the customer experience. </p> <h3>82% of UK consumers are unaware of the filter bubble</h3> <p>Research from the7stars has found that most consumers are unaware that their online experience is limited by social media and search preference algorithms. In fact, 82% have never heard of the term ‘filter bubble’. The study also found that consumers want more serendipitous content online from brands, with many stating positive emotions when asked how relevant but unexpected ads make them feel.</p> <p>In contrast, when asked what they associate with expected advertising based on recent searches or expressed interests, the majority of consumers chose negative words such as ‘targeted’, ‘intrusive’ and ‘annoying’.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5904/the7stars.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="463"></p> <h3>75% of consumers say Amazon would be their go-to physical store</h3> <p>According to new research from <a href="http://www.fujitsu.com/uk/solutions/industry/retail/forgotten-shop-floor/">Fujitsu</a>, four out of 10 consumers in the UK are disappointed by the state of in-store technology. 75% say they would choose Amazon or eBay over traditional names if these retailers had a physical presence on the high street. </p> <p>When it comes to the reasons for this disillusionment, 42% say it is because the technology is slow, while 37% say it is unreliable. Three quarters of consumers say they can access more information than retail employees as a result, with 73% saying they can get it quicker. This means that around 65% of employees are even using their own devices to try to bridge the gap.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5900/Fujitsu.jpg" alt="" width="464" height="336"></p> <h3>360-degree technology is fuelling investment in digital video </h3> <p>A new study by AOL suggests that new advances in technology are contributing to the rise of digital video. Research shows 55% of buyers and sellers in the UK believe immersive formats such as 360-video will provide one of the best revenue streams over the next 12 months. </p> <p>That being said, these formats are still in the early days of adoption. According to the study, 20% of consumers in the UK watch virtual reality video once a week or more, and 68% of Brits say they never watch VR at all.</p> <p>While immersive formats have yet to truly take off, live formats are becoming mainstream – 42% of consumers in the UK now watch live content once or more than once a week versus 55% globally. In truth even these numbers seem quite high.</p> <h3>Eight in 10 shoppers think music makes in-store shopping more enjoyable</h3> <p>A report by <a href="http://moodmedia.co.uk/shopping-with-emotion/">Mood Media</a> has highlighted the importance of improved customer experience in-store. In a survey of 2,000 consumers, 89% said they are likely to revisit a store if it has an enjoyable atmosphere. Eight in ten like background music while they shop in-store, with 75% saying waiting times are less dull if it is playing. </p> <p>When in a shop with enjoyable elements like music, visuals, or scent, the study also suggests that shoppers are more likely to stay longer, revisit, and recommend it to others – as well as choose the store over buying online.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5901/Music.jpg" alt="" width="750" height="365"></p> <h3>Ad campaigns using audience IDs predicted to triple by 2020</h3> <p>Audience IDs – which are the online identity profiles used to recognise and match users across different devices and channels – will be used in 58% of total UK online ad spend by 2020.</p> <p>This comes from a new report by Yahoo and Enders Analysis, which also suggests that audience ID ad spend will triple to €7.9bn by 2020, compared with €2.7bn in 2016.</p> <p>Predictions also suggest that growth in the volume of ad spend which uses audience IDs will slow when GDPR comes into effect in 2018. However, it will continue to grow as the industry responds and adapts to the new regulatory requirements.</p> <h3>UK grocery sector grows 3.7%</h3> <p>The <a href="https://www.kantarworldpanel.com/global/News/Britains-sweet-tooth-helps-grocery-sales-rise">latest figures</a> from Kantar Worldwide show that all 10 major UK retailers saw growth in the 12 weeks ending 23 April 2017, with the sector growing 3.7% as a whole. Britons spent an extra £1bn this year compared to last, with both Easter and inflation contributing to increased spend. A preference for premium confectionary lines was also a factor, with the average price paid for an Easter egg rising by 8.6% to £1.65.</p> <p>In terms of the big supermarkets, Sainsbury’s sales rose 1.7%, while Tesco's were up 1.9%. Meanwhile, Iceland, Aldi and Lidl saw greater success, with sales rising by 9.3%, 18.3% and 17.8% respectively.</p> <h3>Data privacy of retail apps is still a big concern for consumers </h3> <p>According to Apadmi’s latest <a href="https://www.apadmi.com/pdfs/retail-app-report-2017.pdf">retail report</a>, concerns over data privacy and security are still preventing consumers from downloading retail apps. </p> <p>In a survey of UK 2,000 shoppers, 74% said they were most concerned about the security of their information, while 34% said they don’t like the idea of retailers storing their information and not knowing what it would be used for. </p> <p>It’s not solely a generational worry, either. The report states that 36% of 45-54 year olds, 41% of 55-64 year olds and 44% of over 65s share the same concern.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5903/Apadmi.jpg" alt="" width="318" height="423"></p> <h3>89% of UK retailers have seen a drop in foot traffic over the last five years</h3> <p>Research by <a href="http://unbouncepages.com/retail-research-517/">LoopMe</a> suggests that the shift to online shopping has resulted in a loss of revenue for high street stores, with 93% of UK retailers agreeing this has been the case. </p> <p>In a survey of over 250 decision-makers within retail, 89% said they have seen a drop in foot traffic over the last five years, and 17% state they have lost between 31% and 50% of income from physical outlets.</p> <p>As a result, AI-powered campaigns could help to bring back footfall, with 74.5% of retailers suggesting the in-store experience is an ‘extremely important’ part of the purchase journey.</p> <h3>Young agency execs place less value on viewability metrics</h3> <p>New research from <a href="http://www.turn.com/resources/2017-agency-report-split-opinions-could-impact-videos-evolution">Turn</a> has highlighted how agency executives under 30 are turning their back on current viewability standards, with only 28% viewing it as a key requirement in ad buying.</p> <p>Younger execs are also less likely to see fraud as a major concern, as only a quarter of survey respondents aged under 30 believe fraud-free guarantees will drive future video spend. Meanwhile, almost 40% of brands still consider online conversions and clickthroughs to be the chief measures of video success. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5902/Viewability.jpg" alt="" width="659" height="412"></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68996 2017-04-13T15:22:31+01:00 2017-04-13T15:22:31+01:00 10 cracking digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <h3>28% of marketers still feeling unprepared for the GDPR</h3> <p>With just over a year until the GDPR comes into force, a <a href="https://dma.org.uk/infographic/infographic-b2b-marketing-and-the-gdpr" target="_blank">new infographic</a> from the DMA shows that many marketers are failing to prepare.</p> <p>While general awareness of the GDPR is up, 28% of B2B marketers still feeling unprepared – down just 2% from previous figures. Only two-thirds of survey respondents said their business would be GDPR compliant in time for 2018.</p> <p>In terms of the causes of concern, 37% of marketers said profiling, while 50% said it was legacy data. The biggest was by far consent, with 70% agreeing that it would change under the GDPR.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5442/DMA_infographic.JPG" alt="" width="618" height="324"></p> <h3>Three fifths of marketing graduates have no knowledge of affiliate strategies</h3> <p>Affilinet has been researching how well marketing students are prepared for a career in the industry, with results showing that many are graduating with little or no knowledge of affiliate or performance-based marketing.</p> <p>In a survey, 41% of graduates said that they have studied modules related to affiliate marketing. Out of these, however, 67% stated that the information taught was ‘outdated and unhelpful’.</p> <p>52% admitted that they’d needed to teach themselves to progress in their career, with 22% learning through courses later on. The remaining 26% of marketing graduates said that they still had no knowledge of affiliate practices whatsoever.</p> <h3>Mobile drives digital ad spend past £10bn</h3> <p>According to a new report from <a href="https://iabuk.net/about/press/archive/mobile-drives-digital-ad-spend-past-10-billion-threshold" target="_blank">IAB and PwC,</a> digital advertising grew at its fastest rate for nine years in 2016, increasing 17.3% to £10.3bn.</p> <p>Mobile video is now the fastest-growing ad format, with spend on mobile video ads doubling to £693m. Consequently, it now accounts for 29% of the total growth in ad spend.</p> <p>Insight suggests that the rise reflects the increasing amount of users watching video clips on their smartphones, with two in five people reportedly saying they now watch mobile video more than they did a year ago.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5440/PwC_IAB.png" alt="" width="780" height="480"></p> <h3>Just 13% of employees able to name their company CMO</h3> <p>New research by eShare suggests that chief marketing officers are one of the least recognised board members, with just 13% of employees able to identify the CMO of their organisation.</p> <p>In a survey of over 1,000 UK employees, just 8% were able to identify the chairperson and 14% were able to identify the chief information officer and chief financial officer. In contrast, 36% were able to name the CEO, making this the most visible board member to UK employees.</p> <h3>66% of beauty shoppers use Instagram for inspiration</h3> <p>Facebook and Instagram has revealed how beauty shoppers are increasingly turning to social media to help inform their purchases.</p> <p>The Mobile Makeover Report states that 66% of beauty shoppers look to social media for inspiration on how to achieve their perfect look, 70% for learning make-up techniques and 62% for advice on products. </p> <p>Tutorials are among the most popular types of video, with 74% of beauty viewers watching ‘how-to’ content. You can read more about how mobile is impacting the beauty industry <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68992-three-ways-mobile-is-impacting-the-beauty-industry/" target="_blank">in this article</a>. </p> <h3>41% of UK shoppers will spend more to make Easter special</h3> <p>Savvy has been exploring how consumers will spend their money over Easter, with 62% of UK shoppers planning to celebrate over the bank holiday weekend.</p> <p>In a survey, 41% of respondents said they don’t mind spending more in order to make their Easter celebrations special. That being said, shoppers will still be on the hunt for a discount, with 60% saying they already know where they’ll can find the best value Easter eggs.</p> <p>Unsurprisingly, eggs will be the most popular item to buy, followed by chocolate in general, and the ingredients for a roast dinner. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5441/Savvy.JPG" alt="" width="700" height="452"></p> <h3>62% of ecommerce brands don’t personalise digital experiences</h3> <p>Episerver’s <a href="http://www.episerver.com/learn/resources/research--reports/seven-digital-commerce-trends-for-retail-2017/" target="_blank">State of Digital Commerce</a> report suggests that just 38% of ecommerce brands are incorporating personalisation into their current marketing strategies. Despite 70% of companies using email marketing, only 28% are using triggered emails to re-engage non-converting customers.</p> <p>What’s more, despite the abundance of data available, 46% of marketers admit they wouldn’t be able to create an omnichannel campaign due to a lack of insight into the customer journey.</p> <h3>Paddy Power generates the most social engagements during Grand National</h3> <p>4C has analysed the level of social engagement generated from TV ads during the Grand National. Results show that Paddy Paddy stole the show, with its two ads generating 59,527 engagements from public mentions, retweets, comments and likes on social channels – double the engagement of competitors.</p> <p>SkyBet saw 16,840 engagements and Coral saw 18,733. Meanwhile, despite its close association with horse racing, William Hill saw just 2,812 over the course of the event.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Looking for some guidance on how to pick the winner of the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GrandNational?src=hash">#GrandNational</a>? Watch this video to find out how the experts do it. <a href="https://t.co/27q9DPQJP0">pic.twitter.com/27q9DPQJP0</a></p> — Paddy Power (@paddypower) <a href="https://twitter.com/paddypower/status/850644686096281600">April 8, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>Consumers see Snapchat as a passing trend for brand communication</h3> <p>A new study by <a href="https://uk.mailjet.com/blog/guide/email-innovations-research-report/" target="_blank">Mailjet</a> has revealed that consumers are displaying a lack of faith in new platforms like Pinterest and Snapchat and their role in brand communication.</p> <p>41% of consumers believe that email is the platform most people will be using in 10 years’ time, followed by 26% of consumers saying the same for Facebook and WhatsApp. In contrast, just 11% of people are certain that Pinterest and LinkedIn will be used in a decade and only 14% are confident that Snapchat will still exist. </p> <p>Despite many brands getting involved, major updates to platforms are also going unnoticed by consumers, with just 6% of people noting Instagram’s ‘buy button’.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5443/Instagram_shop_now.JPG" alt="" width="680" height="452"></p> <h3>Supermarket promotions fall to lowest level in 11 years</h3> <p>According to <a href="http://www.nielsen.com/uk/en/press-room/2017/supermarket-promotions-at-lowest-level-for-11-years.html" target="_blank">Nielsen</a>, supermarket promotions have fallen to their lowest level in 11 years in the UK, with just 26% of consumer spend going towards temporary discounts or multi-buy offers in the four weeks up until 25th March 2017.</p> <p>Nielsen suggests that this is due to supermarkets becoming increasingly price competitive, turning temporary price reductions into permanent cuts as a result.</p> <p>Year-on-year supermarket sales have also fallen, with the late Easter period said to have contributed to a 2.6% decrease in the four-week period to March 25th.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68888 2017-03-14T10:08:00+00:00 2017-03-14T10:08:00+00:00 Six examples of Mother’s Day marketing from online retailers Nikki Gilliland <p>Here are a few Mother’s Day campaigns that have caught my eye, including activity online, via email and social.</p> <h3>The Body Shop</h3> <p>With L’Oréal reportedly planning to sell it on, the future of the Body Shop hangs in the balance. Meanwhile, the brand has been attempting to counteract negativity with a strong multichannel campaign for Mother’s Day.</p> <p>Built around the #GotItFromHer hashtag, it encourages users to share photos of the women that have passed on quirky and empowering traits. The email creative is also one of the strongest to land in my inbox, making a refreshing change from the standard images of product-heavy gift guides.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4576/Mothers_Day.JPG" alt="" width="500" height="666"></p> <h3>Interflora</h3> <p>Mother’s Day is unsurprisingly a busy time for flower retailers, with brands typically ramping up marketing activity in the run up. This year is no exception, with Interflora releasing video content as long as a month ago.</p> <p>Created as part of its #ChallengeTheFlorist series, the video sees an Interflora-employed florist creating a spring bouquet by special request. While it’s certainly not the most impressive or slick style of video content, its behind-the-scenes element – showcasing the expertise of its employees – is used to effectively instil confidence in the quality of the product.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/fpHlMqul--M?wmode=transparent" width="854" height="480"></iframe></p> <h3>Marks &amp; Spencer</h3> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67883-marks-spencer-what-does-putting-the-customer-at-the-heart-of-everything-mean/" target="_blank">Marks &amp; Spencer</a> has been using extra incentives to drive flower sales, with free chocolates worth £5 for early bird flower orders.</p> <p>While this is sure to pique the interest of consumers searching for deals, M&amp;S’s online gift guide is also one of the best examples of its kind.</p> <p>Nicely showcasing its product range, the guide draws attention to under-the-radar categories like cards and sweet treats – not something online shoppers might even realise they could order online. By including them here, M&amp;S is likely to increase add ons or <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68877-how-retailers-are-capturing-the-loyalty-of-impulse-shoppers/" target="_blank">impulse purchases</a>. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4578/M_S.JPG" alt="" width="680" height="548"></p> <h3>Paperchase</h3> <p>You might pop into Paperchase for a Mother’s Day card, but you probably wouldn’t turn to the brand for an actual gift. This is the idea behind Paperchase’s main Mother’s Day marketing push, which cleverly encourages users to get crafty in celebration of their mum. </p> <p>Created by expert crafter Emily Dawes, its blog on ‘quilling’ tells users how to create their very own paper creation in the form of a heart. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">We've teamed up with the lovely Emily Dawe to show you how to make a Mother's Day gift with heart. Give it a twirl: <a href="https://t.co/S8kV8npluy">https://t.co/S8kV8npluy</a> <a href="https://t.co/Tuekoa2dx0">pic.twitter.com/Tuekoa2dx0</a></p> — Paperchase (@FromPaperchase) <a href="https://twitter.com/FromPaperchase/status/839484730538082305">March 8, 2017</a> </blockquote> <p>As well as being a nice example of online content, it also prompts users to think differently about the brand, effectively pushing them towards its Art and Craft category.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4581/Paperchase_Journal.JPG" alt="" width="680" height="504"></p> <h3>Pandora</h3> <p>Pandora is another brand using Mother’s Day to ramp up engagement on social media. This year, it has created the ‘Pandora Mum Awards’, asking users to upload an image to Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #DOTreatMum. </p> <p>Using the incentive of a Virgin Experience Days package for two and £50 gift card, it’s a clever (if slightly predictable) way of capturing consumer data during a key time period.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/PANDORA_UK">@PANDORA_UK</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/VirginExp">@VirginExp</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/DOTreatMum?src=hash">#DOTreatMum</a> she's been making me laugh 'til I pee my pants for 40 years! I love all her jokes, good and bad! <a href="https://t.co/5KkPF7UU3p">pic.twitter.com/5KkPF7UU3p</a></p> — Olivia Kirby (@sayhelloflo) <a href="https://twitter.com/sayhelloflo/status/839894453548642307">March 9, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>Etsy</h3> <p>Lastly, Etsy deserves a mention for its comprehensive gift guide, which I particularly like for its inclusive nature.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4604/Etsy.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="710"></p> <p>While most brands tend to go down the traditional route, Etsy recognises that mother figures of all kinds should be celebrated, highlighting gifts for mothers-in-law, step mums and even new mums.</p> <p>This is effective for showcasing the varied array of products on offer, as well as encouraging all consumers to buy.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4603/Etsy_2.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="575"></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68882 2017-03-13T10:00:00+00:00 2017-03-13T10:00:00+00:00 Four ways Tiger is transforming the in-store retail experience Nikki Gilliland <h3>Design-lead concept</h3> <p>Unlike other stores with a similar price range, Tiger does not lead with a low-cost concept. Instead, it is better known for its focus on design, stocking a wide range of cheap, cheerful and brightly coloured products – often sourced from Asia.</p> <p>It is a formula that has become a hallmark, and in turn, has made Tiger’s proposition about more than just affordable prices. </p> <p>You might go into a Tiger in search of a specific item, but more often than not, regular consumers also visit for the purpose of having a browse. This is because - drawing on its tagline of ‘everyday magic’ – it promotes the idea that you don’t know what you might find in its stores. </p> <p>While sourcing products from Asia surely helps to offer consumers something new, Tiger has also taken steps to commission artists to create original items specifically for the store. For example, it has previously partnered with Japanese artist Misaki Kawai to create a range of unique tote bags.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4520/Tiger_online.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="398"></p> <h3>Low-cost quality</h3> <p>While the majority of Tiger’s items are very low in price, often falling between just £1 to £3, Tiger doesn’t sell itself on this basis. More importantly, it manages to bypass the notion that low-price equals low quality, and this is largely due to the store’s all-inclusive nature.</p> <p>By refusing to shout about its prices, it has managed to disrupt the idea that cheap equals a poorly-made product.</p> <p>Of course, that is not to say that the consumer does not appreciate good value. Rather, perhaps that consumers are beginning to consider their money even more than ever before – with expectations becoming less about BOGOF offers and more about legitimate value as well as quality.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4518/Tiger_store.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="521"></p> <h3>Seasonal products and travel stores</h3> <p>Another reason why Tiger has generated a loyal following is its dedication to the changing seasons. </p> <p>You only have to look at its social media channels to see how it taps into events like Easter and Pancake Day – conveniently selling season-related products you probably never knew existed.</p> <p>Similarly, it is able to drive sales of its craft and DIY products by continuously introducing new ranges, in turn ensuring that its stores remain interesting and exciting to even the most regular consumers.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4519/Tiger_Insta.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="519"></p> <p>Tiger has also recently entered the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68371-why-travel-retail-is-big-business-for-beauty-brands/" target="_blank">travel retail</a> space, opening its first ever store in a London tube station. With a slightly different product-range, skewed to ‘on the go’ consumers, it is a sign that Tiger is intent on expanding – as well as evidence that there is a demand for it.</p> <h3>In-store discovery</h3> <p>When it comes to its in-store layout, Tiger has clearly been inspired by fellow Scandinavian brand, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67694-10-examples-of-great-ikea-marketing-creative/" target="_blank">Ikea</a>. Its larger shops are distinctly labyrinthine, taking consumers on a one-way journey through the entire store.</p> <p>It’s a clever concept. Not only does it ensure consumers will travel past all potential products before they leave, increasing the likelihood of an impulse purchase, but it also builds on consumer panic. For example, by placing food and drink items near the checkout, but not quite the nearest thing to it, consumers will pick up these items knowing they won’t easily be able to turn back again.</p> <p>It’s not only the layout that sets Tiger apart, of course. Its focus on the ‘surprise and discovery’ concept of its stores extends even to the background music, with the stores playing a familiar soundtrack of songs from the 1960’s to the 1990’s. </p> <p>Whether or not you actually need anything it sells, there’s no doubt Tiger is intent on changing the stale shopping experience of most low-price stores.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">These mini notebooks from <a href="https://twitter.com/FlyingTigerCph">@FlyingTigerCph</a> really speak to my soul <a href="https://t.co/DLois99DFO">pic.twitter.com/DLois99DFO</a></p> — Billy Davis (@Billy_Davis85) <a href="https://twitter.com/Billy_Davis85/status/838089100385271809">March 4, 2017</a> </blockquote> <p><em><strong>Related articles:</strong></em></p> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68787-why-did-poundland-s-ecommerce-trial-fail/" target="_blank">Why did Poundland’s ecommerce trial fail?</a></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68832 2017-02-24T10:05:00+00:00 2017-02-24T10:05:00+00:00 10 staggering digital marketing stats we've seen this week Nikki Gilliland <p>Please note, we've linked to all original studies where possible. Unfortunately not all of these studies are published online, they often come to us as press releases.</p> <h3>60% of millennials have used chatbots</h3> <p>A new study by Retale has delved into how UK millennials feel about chatbots.</p> <p>From a survey of over 500 consumers aged 18 to 34, nearly 60% of respondents were found to have used a chatbot in the past. Out of the percentage of people that had not, 53% said they were still interested in trying them. </p> <p>Interestingly, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/admin/blog_posts/68805-are-brands-failing-to-promote-chatbots/" target="_blank">branded chatbots</a> appear to be growing in popularity, with 71% of millennials saying they’d be happy to try a chatbot from a consumer brand. Lastly, 86% of respondents agreed that brands should use chatbots to promote deals, discounts and offers. </p> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68800-pizza-express-launches-booking-chatbot-is-it-any-good/" target="_blank"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4128/Pizza_Express_5.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="678"></a></p> <h3>Retailers increasing investment in store technology</h3> <p>The <a href="http://now.jda.com/CEO2017.html" target="_blank">latest report</a> from JDA/PWC has found that 69% of CEOs plan to increase investment in digital technologies to improve the in-store customer experience. </p> <p>76% of CEOs have or are planning to invest in personalised mobile ‘push offers’ and beacons, while 79% are also investing or planning to invest in smart mobile devices for staff in stores. Despite this, 52% of respondents have not yet defined or started implementing <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/digital-transformation/">a digital transformation strategy</a>. </p> <h3>68% of British retailers have no Brexit plans in place</h3> <p>According to new research from Global-e, 68% of retailers have yet to start planning for Brexit, despite 51% also saying that the vote to leave the EU has already impacted UK sales. The study, which involved a survey of 250 top British retailers, also found that 32% of those selling internationally have seen an increase in online orders from outside the UK. </p> <p>Additionally, 46% of UK retailers were found to be in favour of a soft Brexit, while 36% agreed that a hard Brexit - with no access to the single market - would be better for UK retailers.</p> <h3>Ad blocking levels stabilise</h3> <p>According to the Internet Advertising Bureau's UK <a href="https://iabuk.net/about/press/archive/iab-uk-reveals-latest-ad-blocking-behaviour" target="_blank">Ad Blocking Report</a>, the proportion of British adults online currently using ad blocking software has remained at around 22% for the last year.</p> <p>Despite a predicted rise in ad blocking, this has failed to materialise, perhaps due to many publishers working hard to promote a value exchange.</p> <p>24% of people cited not being able to access online content as the biggest reason for switching off their ad blocker - a figure up from 16% a year ago. Meanwhile, 24% said that it is because they have since switched to a new device.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4122/ad_blocking.png" alt="" width="750" height="453"></p> <h3>Travel brands expected to benefit from Oscar hype</h3> <p>Data from Lastminute.com suggests that travel brands have seen an increase in search interest on the back of this year’s Oscar nominations. Searches for flights to Los Angeles shot up by 21% on the day of La La Land’s release. Meanwhile, Martin Scorsese’s Silence prompted an even bigger surge, with searches for flights to Japan up 82% from the week before, and increasing a further 46% in the subsequent two days.</p> <p>Though it hasn’t been nominated for any Academy Awards, Brit flick Eddie the Eagle also prompted greater interest in ski holidays, with on-site searches jumping 10% after its release.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4123/Lastminute.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="424"></p> <h3>56% of CRM managers lack firm objectives</h3> <p>In a survey of 500 leading CRM managers, <a href="http://news.wiraya.com/news/crm-managers-dont-believe-theyre-generating-revenue-222319">Wiraya found that CRM</a> is perceived as a key business driver for over 30% of businesses. Despite this fact, it seems many still lack the data and strategy to support their goals and create profitability.</p> <p>While 91% of businesses are currently measuring aspects of their CRM work, 56% do not have firm objectives in place. What’s more, just 17% say that their CRM work is clearly contributing to the company’s overall revenue. This proves that major improvements still need to be made, as just 31% currently consider themselves ‘ambitious’ in terms of CRM maturity.</p> <h3>One in six UK shoppers have switched supermarkets in the past year</h3> <p>In light of Aldi becoming the nation’s fifth largest supermarket, <a href="http://www.tccglobal.com/en/blog/article/uk-shopper-loyalty-study">TCC Global has undertaken a study</a> on the state of consumer loyalty to grocery stores. It found that 32% of UK discount shoppers and 16% of all shoppers have switched their main grocery store in the last 12 months. Meanwhile, 39% of shoppers said that it wouldn’t matter to them if their usual grocery store closed.</p> <p>The research also found that growing convenience is making it even easier to switch between retailers, with shoppers having an average of 11 ‘reachable’, 10 ‘easily reachable’ and five ‘very easily reachable' stores.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4124/Aldi.jpg" alt="" width="720" height="480"></p> <h3>UK online retail sales grow 12% year on year in January</h3> <p>The latest figures from <a href="https://www.imrg.org/data-and-reports/imrg-capgemini-sales-indexes/" target="_blank">IMRG Capgemini</a> has revealed that UK online retail sales were up 12% year-on-year in the first month of 2017, with retailers seeing the highest average January spend since 2010. The average basket value was recorded as £85 in January 2017, up from £79 a year earlier. </p> <p>In terms of sectors, growth for gifts reached an eight-year high, with an increase of 62% year-on-year. Meanwhile, electricals were down 9%, falling for the second month in a row.</p> <h3>Consumers struggle to identify British brands</h3> <p>A recent <a href="https://www.spreadco.com/blog/uk-baffled-by-the-origins-of-their-favourite-brands">poll by Spread Co</a> has found that the majority of consumers are baffled by the origins of their favourite brands. 50% of consumers believe Tetley Tea to be British, when it is in fact owned by a foreign company. Similarly, 42% think the same about Branston Pickle and 37% about HP Sauce, when they are actually Indian and Japanese.</p> <p>The survey also found that 61% of UK adults don’t know that The Body Shop is part of L’oreal, while 19% think Tesco is the biggest company in Britain (even though it only represents 0.84% of the market share).</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/4127/body_shop.jpg" alt="" width="650" height="490"></p> <h3>Mulberry and Burberry are the most searched-for brands during LFW</h3> <p>Captify has revealed that the top three searched for designers during London Fashion Week were Mulberry, Burberry and JW Anderson. Other designers saw online searches go through the roof, with Ryan Lo experiencing a jump of 2,000% over the week, followed by surges for Topshop Unique and Sadie Williams.</p> <p>In terms of the most searched-for items, designer trainers rose by 60%, followed by minimalist clothing and 90’s style, which both rose 20%.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68787 2017-02-13T10:06:07+00:00 2017-02-13T10:06:07+00:00 Why did Poundland’s ecommerce trial fail? Nikki Gilliland <p>So, why exactly did it fail? Here’s a bit of insight into the story.</p> <h3>Failure to convert existing shoppers</h3> <p>Having opened its first ever store over 25 years ago, Poundland is built on a tried and tested formula. The reason behind its success is that it knows exactly what its customers want and it unashamedly delivers it. </p> <p>Its stores – a mainstay on most UK high streets – boast bargain multipacks of everything from batteries to fizzy sweets. Though it famously uses tricks of the trade in order to keep its prices so low, such as ‘re-engineering’ products to shrink the size or quantity of items, faithful customers appear well aware of this fact, maintaining that it offers better value than other stores or budget supermarkets.</p> <p>With the arrival of its online shop, Poundland failed to recognise that most existing customers do not typically use it like a standard or large supermarket. </p> <p>The buying process seems much more fractured – people are likely to pop in simply to check out what bargains are in that week or to pick up a specific item. Meanwhile, Poundland's appeal also surely lies in the joy of coming across a surprise find.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Yes <a href="https://twitter.com/Poundland">@Poundland</a> mate, you've knocked it out of the park with this lifesaver. ONE ENGLISH POUND, GUYS. <a href="https://t.co/VNfdqkmHn8">pic.twitter.com/VNfdqkmHn8</a></p> — Ebony L Nash (@Ebzo) <a href="https://twitter.com/Ebzo/status/825332268893868032">January 28, 2017</a> </blockquote> <p>Further to this, new research from Shoppercentric has found an increase in the ‘little and often’ trend, with 16% of grocery shoppers rarely doing a main shop – a figure 6% higher than it was in 2016.</p> <p>All in all, it seems unlikely that consumers would be able to replicate this reliable experience online. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/3738/Shoppercentric.JPG" alt="" width="240" height="532"></p> <h3>Delivery costs</h3> <p>As the likes of Sainsbury’s and Tesco launch new initiatives to offer one-hour delivery in London, shipping remains an important sales tactic for most of the big supermarkets.</p> <p>Most consumers are prepared to pay for this convenience, as prices typically fall in line with the supermarket’s wider positioning. In contrast, Poundland’s online delivery costs are somewhat at odds with its overall approach to value, coming in at £4 unless a customer spends over £50.</p> <p>With the average spend in Poundland said to be around £4.72, it seems unlikely that consumers would be willing to pay double for the privilege of getting their goods delivered. What's more, it seems even unlikelier that shoppers would ever be able to reach a £50 shop.</p> <p>Without enough of an incentive in this area, it's unsurprising that existing customers remain satisfied with shopping in-store.</p> <h3>Lack of focus</h3> <p>Lidl was named as the fastest-growing retailer in 2016, with Aldi and Lidl accounting for 10% of the total supermarket spend in the UK. Both have famously avoided venturing into the online sphere, instead choosing to focus on physical expansion with investment in stores and warehouses.</p> <p>It’s certainly been a successful strategy, with some suggesting Poundland could have similarly benefitted from this laser-focus on its physical presence instead of forcing a multi-channel approach.</p> <p>That being said, with the recent launch of <a href="http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/whats-on/shopping/poundland-now-opening-clothing-stores-12545933" target="_blank">dedicated clothing stores</a> for its Pep &amp; Co range, it does appear to be investing somewhat in this area. Again, perhaps herein lies the problem, resulting in a fractured or shallow focus across the board.</p> <h3>Mixed user experience</h3> <p>Finally, while the online user experience is somewhat irrelevant now - with a lack of interest in the overall concept overriding design – it is still interesting to note a few errors. </p> <p>On the positive side, the site appears to be very simple to use, with intuitive navigation and guest checkout facilitating an easy experience.</p> <p>Conversely, certain features like the ‘Shuffle’ tool are a bit baffling.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/3737/Shuffle.JPG" alt="" width="690" height="465"></p> <p>Attempting to replicate the experience of finding surprise bargains in-store, this ‘new, fun way to shop’ on-site offers up a random selection of items.</p> <p>However, instead of providing users with a novel or entertaining experience, it negates the way people naturally want to shop online, making the whole process much more time-consuming and muddled than it should be.</p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>The aforementioned shuffle feature is perhaps a good reflection of why Poundland's ecommerce venture failed to work. Ultimately, it’s just a bit misjudged. </p> <p>Poundland’s expansion into ecommerce was done in spite of the needs of its core customer. And while a multichannel approach is undoubtedly the goal of many big retailers – it’s no use if the demand isn’t there in the first place.</p> <p><em><strong>Related reading:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66602-do-supermarkets-know-what-online-customers-want/" target="_blank">Do supermarkets know what online customers want?</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64799-are-supermarkets-missing-seo-opportunities/" target="_blank">Are supermarkets missing SEO opportunities?</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68355-how-online-grocery-retailers-are-capitalising-on-the-need-for-convenience/" target="_blank">How online grocery retailers are capitalising on the need for convenience</a></em></li> </ul>