No doubt about it, e-commerce continues to grow and while it represents a burgeoning share of total retail sales, there are still significant hurdles to overcome.
“We’re in the midst of a profound structural shift from physical to digital retail,” noted Jeff Jordan of venture capital firm Andreesen Horowitz.
eMarketer reported, for instance, that e-commerce growth by quarter was about five times that of store locations in 2013 and 2014.
Yet there are headwinds.
Market research firm Market Track said companies that want to succeed in e-commerce must operate successfully amidst these risk areas that could undermine snaring and retaining customers:
• Volatility – Prices changing with increasing frequency and predictability;
• Non-compliance – Pricing and promoting brands and products outside established guidelines;
• Illegal/illicit activity – Counterfeiting and unauthorized resale;
• Size/scope – More retailers, resellers and products available online than ever before.
JDA Software Group also conducted a survey of more than a thousand online U.S. - based shoppers last year. Of the approximately 35% who bought online and elected to pick up their purchases at a store, about 50% experienced problems in initially getting their purchases. Wayne Usie, a JDA senior VP, said it may suggest that retailers might find it challenging expanding their e-commerce... Read more
In the X’s and O’s game of Super Bowl advertising, marketers have consistently taken a pass on mobile.
Sure, we’ve seen spots with Shazam calls to action and others that have asked viewers to download a mobile app, but I can’t point to one meaningful attempt to engage tens of millions or more after the Big Game is done.
The missed opportunities have been many, including this one that goes back seven years:
Some, probably many, may have had too good a time to remember, but a great deal of us among the 95 million who watched the Super Bowl in February 2009 remember the television spots run by restaurant chain Denny’s to promote free Grand Slam breakfasts. The campaign’s elements were easy to follow—all viewers needed to do was to go to a Denny’s the following Tuesday for free eggs along with toast with hash browns or grits.
Denny’s reported that approximately 2 million took advantage of the offer. Although many might view that as a success, Denny’s was left with egg on its face when quick service restaurant Arby’s did it one better two months later by building in a way to remarket to patrons through a high-profile, national television campaign.
Here’s how... Read more
The idea of targeting and retargeting is not new. What’s changing is the potential for cross-device efforts. We now have the capability to take the search done for an Armani necktie on a PC and use it as a trigger to send a mobile user a related communication at a later point.
But should we?
Few are as equipped to answer that question as Google’s Jason Spero, who literally has written The Mobile Playbook that is relied on by so many marketers.
“If you admire someone's shoes or their tie, in the mobile and the digital world when you didn't have connectivity at that moment, you would file it away in your head or make a note to yourself,'” Spero said in an interview for my book, The Art of Mobile Persuasion (www.artofmobilepersuasion.com).
“As human beings, we've always had impulses, fears, hopes. What happens when you see that tie, you have connectivity. You can act on it in a way that you couldn't in previous eras. The idea of persistent connectivity makes it possible for you to act on all those impulses. You may not act on all of them. It's probably a bad thing if you act on them all because you are... Read more
More than 170,000 attended CES last week, yet the only one that matters was nowhere to be found among more than 2.5 million square feet of packed aisles and shiny objects.
The consumer doesn’t qualify for entry to the businessperson-only show. And while we would hope that all products – from robots to drones to smart appliances and more – were built based on solid end-user insights, that notion is as likely as 95 percent of what was shown becoming runaway hits.
The most astute comment of the week came from David Pogue, longtime consumer electronics pundit, who said, “CES is not a store; it's an exercise in wishful thinking.”
So what wins?
“The consumer is going to decide,” Sean Lyons, U.S. President of R/GA, told me in an interview for my The Art of Mobile Persuasion book (www.artofmobilepersuasion.com). “I think a lot of these early thoughts about how things will be used are wrong often. And it's not because people aren't intelligent. It's because we haven't really found what the behaviors are yet.”
Said Target CMO Jeff Jones on Facebook:
“The consumer will win with choice for sure…but as of now, people will have to choose a “platform” or an “ecosystem” that they buy into... Read more
Be it the Internet of Things, the smart home, virtual reality or something else, change is coming.
A year ago, I walked the Las Vegas Convention Center with 150,000 of my closest friends attending the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show. Televisions were impressive, but incremental in benefit to the viewer. Automobiles were not just tricked out with sound, but with connectivity like never before. Smart home hardware was plentiful.
Whether they were solving consumer problems – alerting us that there is a leak under our sink or that our beer supply in the fridge is low – is another question.
I’m heading back to the desert this week to see where innovation has taken us since last year’s show.
Previews of the 2016 show point to the increased availability of smart products, including light bulbs, automobiles, appliances, regulators like the Nest thermostat, and an increasingly present wearable category.
The Consumer Electronics Association says that the wearable tech industry is projected to grow 64 percent over the next three years, reaching $25 billion in 2019 when more than 245 million devices are expected to ship.
The build-out of the wearable market will be in the spotlight on the CES 2016 show floor where the Wearables Marketplace and related... Read more