Say whaaa? Positive news about Retail?

The entire retail industry can relate to Mark Twain’s reply after reading his own obituary in a newspaper, “The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated”. Forrester’s Online Retail Forecast, 2017 to 2022 has just been released and the results are surprisingly positive.

What has the press missed amid a slew of store closing and bankruptcy announcements this year? Retail is actually growing steadily and is in the midst of a massive transformation. And many of the store closings are a result of brands finally making the tough decisions to right size. Let’s face it, the retail industry has looked at store openings as a way to drive growth for years, but now we’re faced with an overabundance of underperforming assets. Recent research from commercial real estate firm Costar makes this clear:

  • US retailers added an average of 160 million square feet of store space every year between 2000 and 2008.
  • The US now has an average of 24 square feet of retail space per capita, compared with 16 square feet in Canada and 4.6 square feet in Great Britain.
  • In the US, sales per square foot have declined from $350 in 2000 to $330 today.

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Driving Omnichannel Growth with a Digital Flagship

Webinarch Madness

We hosted a great webinar yesterday with our guest Ron Offir, CEO of Offir Consulting. The topic – Driving Omnichannel Growth with a Digital Flagship. Below is a summary of the presentation and an audio file of the Q&A.

Ron is the CEO and founder of Offir Consulting and has over 20 years of experience leading marketing and e-commerce initiatives at Michael Kors, The Jones Group, Coach, Gap Inc, and Deloitte Consulting. Ron chatted with Kevin Young, CMO of Custora, who has held senior marketing positions at Monetate, SAP North America, and Microsoft.

Top line growth is at the top of every CEO’s agenda, and it’s no surprise. In the digital age, consumers are always shopping around. New technologies and greater choice are changing how they are thinking and acting. 

Couple this with the fact that the cost to acquire new customers continues to grow as the expected return from each new customer shrinks. An alarming number of customers are drifting away after their first purchase. We call this the shark graph, and it represents a scary situation for the retail industry.  

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Teleflora + Custora: Using CLV to Drive Sustainable Growth

teleflorawebinar

We recently hosted a webinar with Tommy Lamb, Teleflora’s Director of Loyalty and Retention. Tommy, who has previously held positions at Dermstore, Lucky Brand, and BCBG, walked us through the ways his team is leveraging customer data to drive sustainable growth. Check out the full video below.

Custora’s CEO, Corey Pierson, kicked off the webinar by discussing why customer-centric metrics such as customer lifetime value (CLV) are essential indicators of the health of retailers’ customer databases, and why customer retention is becoming more important than ever.

Tommy then shared four case studies—churn prevention, VIP programs, and two cases of advanced segmentation. In each, he used Custora’s predictive algorithms to select the best audiences at key moments in the customer lifecycle. He explained how he determined which opportunities to pursue, how he began testing offers and creatives, and how he used holdout groups to measure the success of each campaign.

Fill out the form below to get the recording.

The Retail Tipping Point

David Stychno creative

Sculpture by Isamu Noguchi

 

Growing retailers often place companies like Amazon on a pedestal, strategizing about the hurdles necessary to overcome and place themselves amongst the upper echelon. But let’s be honest, comparing yourself to the Amazon of today is simply unrealistic – and will likely only frustrate you.

Every company reaches what I like to call a “tipping point.” Some hit it at the $20 million mark, some at the $50 million mark, others much later. This “tipping point” forces a company to evaluate their strategy and make a crucial decision: continue with the status quo, or adapt and dig in to their customer data to move that revenue needle forward. If you are like most growing companies, you are probably leaning more towards the latter, devising a plan to move beyond optimizing one-time transactions and entering the realm of sustainable revenue through retention.

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Relationship Marketing In Custora – New Software Release

“What can we do this month to nurture ‘almost VIP’ shoppers into ‘VIP’ customers?”

 

“What churn prevention tactics do we have in place for our highest value customers?”


“How are we converting our 1x buyer, fashion-focused customers to make a 2nd purchase?”

 

We all know marketing is about building long-lasting relationships with our customers. Yet with all the new marketing technology that has emerged over the past few years, we still find ourselves caught up in the busy short-term needs of manual list pulls and frenzied scrambles to get the daily email out the door. Marketing is busy, and marketing is hard — and there is usually little, if any, time for questions such as the ones above.

 

The new release of Custora is designed to make these types of conversations a reality. Over the past few years, we’ve been fortunate to work with some of the biggest names in retail, large and small, and young and old — and we’ve expanded the software to capture best practices across the board.

 

These include the “playbook” that most successful retail marketing teams follow for formulating and executing marketing strategy:

  • Opportunity sizing and prioritization: what opportunities emerge from the data — and where should the team focus its time and resources
  • Testing and iteration: what ideas and messages are the most effective for reaching different customer segments
  • Automation: how can the best ideas be automated to create a sustainable “retention system” over time?

 

How do teams actually use the new release in practice? Let’s imagine that BigStore USA, an ecommerce retailer, were to log in to the new retention dashboard. They’d see a breakdown of the most important customer-centric Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), tracking the strength of their relationships with customers throughout the lifecycle. (Click here to learn more about these KPIs.) And an opportunity sizing would show them the gains, that they could expect, benchmarked against results from similar retailers.

 

Exploring their data, they might discover that their most significant opportunity involves increasing the purchase rate of customers who are active and engaged with the brand. By navigating to the Retention Marketing Manager, they could then access the full array of triggers available to them to reward and deepen the loyalty of their most valuable customers. They would also discover the opportunity to launch “programs”: recurring campaigns focused on strategic segments of customers, like their VIPs and almost-VIPs.

 

BigStore USA would try a variety of ideas to surprise and delight their VIPs. One month they might try exclusive sneak-peek access to a new shoe collection; the next, they might try a thank-you note from the CEO. And for their “almost VIPs,” they might try rolling out the red carpet with free shipping upgrades and personal shopper consultations.

 

As they experimented with different approaches to loyalty cultivation, they would discover what ideas worked best for each segment — and the retention dashboard would track exactly how much their efforts were moving the needle on the relevant KPI. Over time, they would continue to iterate and automate their best-performing ideas to capture the full opportunity from this segment.

 

We’re excited to have the opportunity to share this new release — stay tuned to learn more about how other retailers are using Custora to power relationship marketing!