Shoptalk Day 2: Innovation Into Action

In this year’s conference, Shoptalk Day 2 featured discussions about concrete problems and solutions in the real-world evolution of e-commerce. The inspiration and innovation I learned about sound easy when compared to implementation. But in business, when the rubber hits the road, you must learn about your customers, prove your capabilities and grow.

The day began with a presentation from Michael Klein, Head of Industry Strategy – Retail for Adobe, who gave an overview of the company’s Customer Experience Retail Report Card. He said that products come and go, but experiences last forever.

The study showed that companies agree, and plan to elevate their customers’ experience by using purchase and demographic data more thoroughly. In the study, 57 percent of participating companies were planning to increase budgets for personalization. In fact, many retailers put higher priority on personalization than product value, ease of transaction, or reliability. The challenge for these companies is to balance investments to match their customers’ values.

Another avenue of retail growth through enhanced experience is the time-saving process called Buy Online, Pick Up In-Store (BOPIS).

Though users are typically their most loyal customers, as this click and collect avenue of e-commerce grows, retailers worry they will lose out on impulse purchase revenue. An effective way to combat the slide was explained by Klaus Werner, SVP & CIO at Alex Lee, Inc, where 90 percent of their online purchases are fulfilled through click and collect. He recommends a high-touch omnichannel communications plan. This includes personalized calls, custom coupons, cross-promotions, suggested upsells, transaction flexibility and earned rewards.

Retaining and Maintaining a Customer Base

Of course, in order to grow, companies must retain these customers for the long term.

Jamie Iannone, President & CEO of, said he aspires to make reorders “magical.” His company tracks customer purchase history to automatically create a cart of favorite products, recommends the right additional purchases at the right time and provides pick up solutions, which allow customers to skip the pain of the in-person checkout line. This allows Sam’s Club company to form a reliable relationship with customers. This bond delivers an impressive 80 to 90 percent reuse rate.

After Shoptalk Day 2, stay tuned for more highlights from the event. You can also catch up on day one highlights here.

For ways to transform your retail or e-commerce business check out Bell and Howell’s personalized automated packaging solutions and our intelligent parcel lockers for last mile delivery pick up and drop off.