Wednesday, August 30, 2006

How Mobile Technology May Help Bridge The Web - To - Store Gap

"An interactive marketed for one of the major mobile carriers told me recently that the Store Locater function on his main Web site produces one of the big blank spots in his knowledge about the effectiveness of his online spend. Almost all of his other online investments produce reams of detailed metrics he can use to optimize, calculate ROI, and spec out future projects. The Store Locater gets a ton of traffic, but he has no idea where it goes and how effectively it drives people to the retail stores themselves. There remains an enormous gap between the Web and retail and our understanding of how the two work together. We just know that they do work together--somehow." (Let's Go Shopping, by Steve Smith, Tuesday, Aug 29, 2006 3:01 PM ET)

This is such a great example of the current opportunity that exists in the W2S world. I am betting (as many others are)
that mobile applications (such as couponing) will lead the charge in connecting the Web with in store shopping. To drive this bridge forward, the new Web - to - phone space will need to continue to evolve.

To read the full article, click here

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Circuit City Claims That 50% Of All In Store Sales Are A Result Of W2S Behavior

Here is a clip from a recent DM News article that demonstrates how much of a part web - to - store sales constitue for one major retailer. It just goes to show how powerful the W2S behavior pattern is becoming.

Multichannel Marketing is Key Says

"Another key point is that Web-to-store traffic is a big business. Circuit City gets 50 percent of its customers visiting its Web site at before coming into its store, Scott Silverman (executive director for said. The electronics retailer has also seen a lot of traffic to the store for online returns, which results in new sales.

The Web site not only works in concert with stores, but also with catalogs. Mr. Silverman said that catalogs are evolving and that there is often a spike in online sales just after a catalog drops."

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Coupon, Inc program goes contextual to drive web-to-store sales

Coupons Inc. is now putting a spin on contextual ad serving with a new program that serves up coupons contextually, for home printing and store redemption.

For example, the system works when a "bot" scans copy relating to children’s nutrition and healthy cereals on a host site, and then generates links to consumer-printable coupons for whole-grain cereals manufactured by or available at the coupon’s sponsor. The offer of a printable coupon appears in a small window that’s launched when a consumer mouses over highlighted words in the copy. When printed, the coupons are then redeemable at local retailers.

One metric of success for the system, will be an increase in coupon printing and redemption for participating marketers. While many CPG and other sites already offer printable coupons, consumers generally have to look for them in a dedicated area of the site. The contextual presentation of the coupons in the program already is producing multiple double-digit increases in the rate of coupons being printed on participating sites. Coupons, Inc. anticipates that it could increase the store redemption rate, now averaging about 15% to 17% by a few percentage points.

What makes this interesting is that coupons are one of the "tools of the trade" that W2S firms use to help prove that consumers are in fact making the leap from researching online to purchasing instore. However, using coupons to make a business case has traditionally been a very difficult task as the print and redemtion rates are usually very low (much lower than the claimed 15%-17% redemption rates that Coupons, Inc claims). What would be interesting is to possible try out this new technology of serving coupons to consumers in a more relevant manner, and then to see if the results of viewing -> printing -> redemption is any better.

To read more about this store, click here

Newspaper Free-Standing Inserts Helps Consumers Plan Their Shopping

According to a survey study conducted by Scarborough Research (for the NAA), 78% of newspaper readers have used a free-standing insert (FSI) to help them plan an upcoming shopping trip. In addition, 76% of these readers said that these FSI ads helped them save money.

This is good news for the online circular market, as this only goes to prove that FSI's remain a great marketing vehicle to reach consumers with relevant local sale information.