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House of Fraser plans shoppable windows this Christmas as it looks to convert in-store customers to digital shopping

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House of Fraser chief customer officer Andy Harding says the department store hopes to enable shoppable windows this Christmas, as part of its strategy to turn the 70% of its customers who only buy in-store into multichannel purchasers.

Such windows, he says, would build in the department store’s use of beacon technology in mannequins to enable shoppers to buy from its stores over the holiday period.

This Christmas hopefully we’ll see shoppable windows,” Harding told the Demandware Xchange 2015 customer conference in London today. “We’ll just enable the whole window from outside so when the store’s closed or is busy you can just shop from the window.”

House of Fraser was one of the first retailers to use iBeacon mannequins when it enabled them last summer. There were 10,000 views of a dedicated app accessed via the mannequins. “Outfitting is a core component of our strategy,” he said. “So when you see an outfit such as this on a mannequin I can just connect to it straightaway and see what products there are available on that mannequin and then start upselling and crossselling and so forth.”

Harding cited beacons and shoppable windows as examples of how House of Fraser is encouraging shoppers to use mobile phones in its stores as it looks to engage customers across all its channels. House of Fraser card data shows that 70% of its customers only shop in the store, while 25% shop across channels and 3.1% only online. But while shoppers who buy from the store spend an index of £2.50, and shoppers who buy on the website only spend an index of £1.50, shoppers who buy from stores and the website spend, on the same scale, £6, and those who shop from stores, the website and mobile spend £8. “The more we can move that cutomer into a multichannel environment the more we will move that £2.50 customer into a £6 or £8 customer,” said Harding. “An awful lot of our strategy is around how we turn the store-only customer into a multichannel customer.”

Aside from the beacons and future shoppable windows, new House of Fraser app, designed by Poq , has been launched to encourage multichannel shopping. It stores loyalty information and enables customers to scan products for more information. Free wi-fi in stores enables all this to happen.

Harding said: “Any customer that gets their phone out in store is a success. The fact they’re engaging digitally in the store environment is the start.”

Explaining how House of Fraser is going about unifying the customer experience into one single view of the customer to support multichannel shopping, Harding said the company was still battling with disparate customer data in its legacy systems. He also explained how House of Fraser went about reorganizing its digital and online businesses into new business teams that cross channels.

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