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IRC 2016 PREVIEW The Transform track: bringing stores and online closer together

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We’re exploring this year’s InternetRetailing Conference (IRC 2016) through a series of previews and interviews. In August we looked at Track 1: Engage, and last month we looked at Track 2: Growth. Today the focus is on Track 3: Transform

Ever-more demanding customers now assume they’ll use mobile and digital to browse and shop with their favourite retailers. That puts the pressure on traders to make sure they stay current with the latest technologies.

The Transform track at IRC 2016 features a diverse group of multichannel and ecommerce industry speakers who have learnt from experience and join the event to share insights into what works.

“This track will dig into the detail of how retailers are fulfilling their multichannel promises,” said conference director Lisa Ploude. “Successfully evaluating, implementing and integrating the best fulfilment options for your business is no mean feat, and in this track you will learn how your peers are harnessing the latest available tools and practices to win over the hearts and minds of a consumer that is increasingly spoilt for choice!”

IRC 2016 is held on October 12 and the Transform track gets underway at 11.20am, following the opening plenary session which features speakers including InternetRetailing editor-in-chief Ian Jindal (9am), James McClure, UK general manager of Airbnb on new horizons for marketplaces (9.10am), Tony Rivenell, chief digital officer at Halfords on new horizons in mobile (9.30am) and Andrew McLean, head of international and chief operating officer of Urban Outfitters, on new horizons in international (9.50am).

Anne-Marie Blaire of Grupo Cortefiel is the opening speaker in the day, alongside Jamie Merrick, director, strategic at Salesforce Commerce Cloud, formerly Demandware. Blaire will be considering the importance of millennial shoppers, what multichannel means both for customers and retailers from a practical point of view as well as how to equip stores while making the business mobile-ready. This opening session is at 11.20am.

It’s followed by an analysis of omnichannel in payments. Nicole Olbe, payment gateway sales director at Barclaycard explores how consumers interact with merchants and the challenge in meeting the demands of customers who want to interact across a range of payment channels. Putting into practice what omnichannel means to your business is at 11.55am.

Michael Durbridge, director of omnichannel at B&Q , then shares the B&Q story of how the retailer is using digital technologies to harmonise communications and experience to connect online and the store. Harmonising communications and experience to create continuity between online and physical stores is at 12.30pm.

Faye Roth, head of customer and digital IT delivery at River Island, explains how the fashion retailer is bringing online and offline together, and generating a return on investment. Synchronising physical and digital to boost performance is at 2pm.

Mona Basra, head of web operations at Monsoon, Thierry Bedos, CTO at and Richard Hewitt, head of digital stores at M&S, consider approaches to technology investment in a panel discussion. Technology and data to drive innovation and business growth is at 2.35pm.

Andy Leaver, executive vice-president, sales at Sailthru and Stephanie Cheung, head of customer lifetime value at Wowcher, then look at ways that marketers can move their attention from acquisition to retention. This sponsor case study, Sailthru with Wowcher, is at 3.55pm.

Neil Dulake, industry head, retail at Google, closes the track with a keynote session considering the market trends, technologies and the drivers behind growth in the ecommerce industry. Reimagining retail – future growth drivers and trends is at 4.30pm.

For more information about the InternetRetailing and eDelivery conferences and to register for the event click here.

We have a limited number of full delegate passes to win. Each entitles the holder to access all conference tracks, post conference networking receptions, and to meals and refreshments at the event. We’re offering them to the retailers who we judge to have the best answer to the following question: what development or event of the year so far has been most significant for the ecommerce and multichannel industry, in your view? Enter by tweeting @IR_conf and @etail with your responses.

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