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WEBINAR OVERVIEW: Multichannel predictions for 2015… and beyond

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In a recent Internet Retailing webinar, Multichannel predictions and priorities for 2015… and beyond, speakers Simon Jones, web development manager at Paul Smith , Mark Hammond, chief operating officer at Pets Pyjamas , David Kohn, multichannel director at Snow + Rock , and Chris Edge, customer success director at SLI Systems shared their views on what will set the multichannel agenda for the year ahead. Below, we summarise the subject areas covered.

Predictions for multichannel in 2015

Mark Hammond, chief operating officer, Pets Pyjamas

• Introduced Pets Pyjamas: marketplace for pet products; introduced services such as pet-friendly travel service recently.

• Lessons from the pet world: customers are buying for pets, for specific breeds, and are both engaged (as befits a family member) and vocal

• Personalisation: how it works in practice for Pets Pyjamas as it tackles challenges such as bringing disparate data sources on breeds together.

• How its pet profiles and pet social network help elicit customer information: giving information on potential purchases and developing community interaction. Redeemable loyalty points for completion.

• Leads to greater personalisation, more relevant emails.

• In 2014 learned how to use targeted communications, and how to engage with/learn from customers who do not like to feel they are being targeted.

• 2015: developing community, improving personalisation and expanding offsite through measures such as retargeting.

• Conclusion: offer something useful in return for information, automate where possible, question everything, and stand out from the competition.

David Kohn, multichannel director, Snow + Rock

• Multichannel trend of personalising the online experience

• Introduction to Snow + Rock (Snow + Rock, Runners Need, CycleSurgery, aimed at an enthusiast audience)

• How Snow + Rock helps convince shoppers that it’s more authoritative, using staff to inform online customers on their choices.

• Live chat takes this further. Example: and how it provides personalised service through live chat on the web.

• Snow + Rock plans to introduce this in 2015 and is also looking at how to enlist store staff to answer online questions. (eg Twelpforce)

• IBM Watson: how it creates interaction without humans.

• Personalising web experience: behavioural approach; use of authoritative messages with real people around the checkout.

Simon Jones, web development manager at Paul Smith

• Introduction to Paul Smith: founded 1970, now sells 14 collections in 66 countries. Online store is its biggest, launched in 2004.

• Customer experience critical to a successful multichannel strategy: important to put web at the centre of the strategy.

• Four predictions for businesses of all sizes in 2015:

• In-store technology: Paul Smith using free wi-fi, tablets in stores: allows staff to provide information on wider range of products to customers and help them buy online. Beacons will also be important.

• Intelligent search: customers who find what they searched for are more likely to buy. Paul Smith invested in search in 2014, “probably the best investment we’ve made in recent years.” In 2015 retailers should be focusing on curating content.

• Customer-centric fulfillment: click and collect. To compete retailers increasingly need to offer a wide range of collection and delivery options.

• Mobile payments: in 2014 highlights included Apple Pay. Zero friction payments will be important in 2015.

Chris Edge, customer success director, SLI Systems

• Predictions: omnichannel; searchandising; big data

• Example: buying a bike online: good experience, except when the 20% off offer arrived two weeks after purchase.

• The importance of providing shoppers with relevant and timely information.

• Recognising different breeds of online shoppers – and how they prefer to buy

• Encouraging browsers to buy: price, delivery, recognising previous history.

• Big data in search pages: the pros and cons

• Question and answer session.

To hear the webinar for yourself, to view the accompanying slides and hear the question and answer session, visit the SLI Systems webinar page.

For details of our other webinars, visit our webinars page.

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