Tag Archives: Cross Channel

Omni-Channel Shoppers: An Emerging Reality for Retailers

Did you know that 45% percent of merchants and suppliers have lost more than $1 million in revenue due to challenges faced when integrating cross-channel capabilities (1WorldSync Data Study 2017)?

According to Nick Manzo, Omni-Channel Lead, at 1WorldSync, “Without establishing a firm foundation, brands can’t handle the challenges that a smooth omnichannel experience entails. However, brands that invest in the right technology and implement proactive measures are more likely to succeed regardless of how sales channels or customer expectations evolve.” (Total Retail 2017).

Blurred Lines & Blended Commerce: It’s an Omni Channel World After All!

With the recent acquisition of Whole Foods, it is a bold statement that Amazon is serious about brick-and-mortar and at the same time this step finally fully validates cross-channel commerce as the future of grocery (Bloomberg 2017).

As the lines between online and in store have blurred, Amazon has realized that location will be a key driver for commerce success. Having access to Whole Foods’ 431 existing stores, gives them valuable distribution centers to bring fresh, localized products directly to customers. Amazon was also likely motivated to reach Whole Foods’ millennial audience and develop loyalty with the younger, more quality-conscious consumer.

Are you ready to make your products digital, discoverable and highly shoppable?

  1. Invest in Cross Channel Capabilities
  2. Commit to a third-party content provider
  3. Embrace the cloud

By enabling products to stand out in a crowded omni-channel world, 1WorldSync delivers rich and trusted product content, including digital assets and insights – to engage customers and consumers – regardless of location or medium. 1WorldSync’s Omni-Channel solutions helps leading retailers capitalize on product information to drive conversion.  

Watch our video below and learn how you can organize for cross-channel sales growth!

Retail + Boxing: When Worlds Collide (Part 1)

When Floyd Mayweather welcomes UFC Champion Conor McGregor inside the boxing ring, it is expected to be the biggest fighting spectacle of this generation, if not ever. On August 26, 2017 viewers will witness, for the first time, the sports version of when two worlds collide.

Boxing has long been the staple in the combat sports world, until Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) became the fastest growing sport in the world and captured newer audiences. Today many view it as the old vs. new age, one seems to be on a meteoric rise and the other struggling to stay relevant.

Brick and mortar retail stores are following the same traditional format that we all grew up with. Mayweather, while flashy and controversial, represents a sport that gets the same headlines as brick and mortar stores; “Boxing is dead” or “Boxing is a dying sport”. You can replace brick and mortar in any of those headlines and find thousands of results on Google. This superfight, not only brings both sports to a height neither has seen in some time, but will create a new blended party for audiences.

Lines continue to blur between traditional brick and mortar shopping and e-commerce. Shoppers care more about bottom lines price and will go wherever that leads them, online or in store. These two worlds collide and coexist to consumers everyday while brands continue to struggle.

The $1.9 trillion e-commerce world shows no signs of slowing down, companies are facing more challenges managing product content across channels, and are losing revenue as a result.

A New Hybrid  

Thanks to e-commerce, online sales have scaled new heights, winning a growing percentage of the market every year. The Irishman, McGregor has made his own emergence from obscurity, much like MMA and e-commerce. The UFC Champion was said to be living out of his car just a few years ago. Now he is on the verge of a multi-million dollar pay day, bringing MMA into its largest spotlight to date. Regardless of who wins, audiences will fill the arena and create a new hybrid of both sports, leaving room for only growth.

An estimated  8,640 brick-and-mortar stores will close their doors in 2017, more than 2008 in the great recession (Zero Hedge 2017). Each retailer must look to online sales to keep consumers and both sides must concentrate on what the consumer wants/needs more than thinking of winning them for their side. This will not be a Blockbuster vs Netflix, we all know how that turned out, this battle is all about placement and willingness to adapt.

We have seen past dual sport athletes, Michael Jordan, Bo Jackson and Deion Sanders did it first by showing the cross over appeal. Now athletes like Tim Tebow and Brock Lesnar bring a different appeal to dual sports by sole mass appeal to the media. But this is not playing two sports separately, this is a head-to-head battle of two becoming one.

Weighing In

The weigh ins for a fighter are as mentally tough as they are physical. Today with regulations becoming stricter and heavier regulated in order to keep transparency and safety for fighters health, there is very little room for error.

Missing weight by 1 pound can result in losing millions of dollars from their fight purse, sponsors and overall brand loyalty. New industry regulations like UDI and SmartLabel have put pressure on companies to be more transparent in order to help consumers be more aware of the ingredients and processes used everyday. Bad data or ignoring consumer and federal guidelines can result in heavy profit loss, it would be as bad as not paying taxes ;)

Product information is becoming rich, robust, accurate and readily available to customers and consumers alike, and businesses are becoming more efficient, compliant, and transparent. Consumers want to know more about the products they buy and are basing purchasing decisions on the information available to them.

Companies that aren’t paying attention to larger trends will lose customers trust; the value of a cross channel approach is becoming a must in order to maintain trust loyalty and consistent experiences across every channel.

Follow us to know when part 2 drops next week…

References

“The Retail Bubble Has Now Burst: A Record 8,640 Stores Are Closing In 2017 – ZeroHedge” 22 April, 2017.  http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-22/retail-bubble-has-now-burst-record-8640-stores-are-closing-2017

“Worldwide Retail Ecommerce Sales Will Reach $1.915 Trillion This Year – E-Marketer” 22 August, 2016.  https://www.emarketer.com/Article/Worldwide-Retail-Ecommerce-Sales-Will-Reach-1915-Trillion-This-Year/1014369

Take Advantage of the 1WorldSync Expanded Offerings to Improve Global Cross-Channel Commerce Capabilities this Summer!

Success in the retail space is challenging. Grabbing a competitive edge is a must. The best suppliers move quickly to get their products onto new shelves and improve product transparency…which in turn drives sales!

Are You Ready to Sizzle This Summer?

1WorldSync is excited to announce that we’ve enhanced our Product Information Cloud® Platform to help our customers syndicate content more efficiently and improve global compliance and product transparency to drive sales.

This summer, we have launched five new apps and features to enhance customers’ ability to grow global cross-channel sales.

The new capabilities enable more efficient content syndication and improved compliance and product transparency offerings to simplify content aggregation and exchange between trading partners.

Suppliers can now take advantage of the 1WorldSync expanded product suite:

  • The Amazon App allows customers to set up products based on Amazon.com requirements and publish directly to Amazon Vendor Central. This accelerates sellers’ ability to standardize their GDSN data. Do you sell to Amazon today?  Do you want to learn how to leverage your GDSN data to submit GDSN and Non-GDSN product content to Amazon efficiently? Learn more on how you can connect to Amazon today.
  • The Walmart App provides users a ‘Content Service Provider (CSP)’ API connection to Walmart Store Assortment Online (SAO), simplifying and accelerating product sellers’ ability to list products on Walmart.com. The app eliminates the extra step of having to top off data in the Walmart vendor portal.
  • The Lidl App enables suppliers to publish product data in the format consistent with category-specific playlists that adhere to Lidl product information requirements.
  • SmartLabel enhancements meet the updated requirements by the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA). 1WorldSync customers will benefit from a new layout of the Nutrition Fact Panel, upgraded design and improved format for a more consumer-friendly experience.
  • The Recipient Catalog enables buyers to accept items from manufacturers and publish to their own digital storefronts, including products from many brands or suppliers organizing products by category or type as desired.

As the demands of global commerce and consumers have evolved, so have the 1WorldSync product solutions. It’s time to sizzle this Summer! Take action and request a strategy to learn more about our expanded capabilities and new Apps request one today.

Enabling Trusted Content Everytime in Every Channel

The majority of consumers (88%) say that detailed product content is extremely or very important to their purchasing decision (Google Shopping Guide, 2016).

Accurate and timely product content is critical in the path to purchase from discovery to delight. As digital pre-shopping, such as product research and comparative reviews, increasingly influence the shopping journey, so too increases consumer reliance on consumable content.

EnterWorks & 1WorldSync Q&A

This week, 1WorldSync’s Director of Professional Services, Data Source Solutions, Vanessa Lin, and EnterWorks CEO Rick Chavie joined for a Q&A. Together, they discussed the drivers of cross channel commerce and how EnterWorks and 1WorldSync are joining forces to pave the path for trusted content.

Vanessa Lin:

How is EnterWorks seeing new regulations and data requirements changing the way businesses must manage/distribute data?

Rick Chavie:

We have entered a new era of data standards. Whether it is the Google GTIN update last year which mandated that all brand-name products include the manufacturer-assigned GTIN number or the FDA regulations on nutritional content effective in May 2017, the growing insistence on data quality means online sellers including retailers, brands, and distributors must invest more in time, resources, and digital competencies to update product feeds continuously.

But the imposition of a single view of standard content across channels, while being pushed by the industry and government, pales in comparison to the role that the consumer is playing in driving the expectations for content to a new level.  Fickle or not, loyal or opportunistic, the consumer is now accustomed to having content that they need regarding their preferred products at their fingertips.  Correspondingly, the cost of poor and inconsistent content mounts as sellers increasingly realize that they now compete on content for share of mind and wallet.

Vanessa Lin:

Agreed! Competing with trusted product content consumers can rely on is critical. Consumers expect rich and trusted product content on all channels: desktop to mobile. What areas has EnterWorks observed where consumers are driving change?

Rick Chavie:

This is the age of content enthusiasts. Forrester Analyst Carlton Doty recently described our post-digital world, saying “customers aren’t just empowered by digital technology – they’re actually entitled. They think they deserve something, they want it now, and if you can’t provide it, they will quickly find it somewhere else.”  

Retailers, manufacturers and distributors must consider not only the effectiveness of product data, but how their content tells a story and creates differentiated experiences. Compelling, trusted product information that is consistent across channels is key. That’s where Product Information Management (PIM) and Master Data Management (MDM) solutions can help, by enabling companies to acquire, manage and transform product information into persuasive content. This content then drives higher sales and new competitive strengths through e-commerce Web, mobile, print and in-store digital channels.

Vanessa Lin:

Indeed, today’s shopping experience is driven by ‘I need to know’ moments for consumers. Given the consumer’s lofty expectations for an integrated cross-channel shopping experience, there is a steady race to remain relevant in a hyper-competitive retail environment.

A new data study commissioned by 1WorldSync highlighted some of the key challenges suppliers and retailers face when trying to achieve true cross-commerce capabilities.  For example, over half (53 percent) of merchants and suppliers experience a knowledge gap internally when it comes to understanding the value of cross-channel capabilities.

Let’s talk about how 1WorldSync and EnterWorks are working together to provide an end-to-end solution.

Rick Chavie:

The successful partnership between EnterWorks and 1WorldSync continues to hit exciting milestones, ushering in new clients, opportunities, and a powerful go-to-market strategy.

This builds on our news last year that EnterWorks received certification on Major Release 3 from 1WorldSync. The MjR3 certification expands the functionality for EnterWorks customers already connected to GDSN, and offers new users of EnterWorks’ PIM and MDM solutions the most advanced bi-directional data publishing and synchronization tools available.

Vanessa Lin:

Thanks, Rick! Overall, the EnterWorks/1WorldSync partnership brings enhanced access to richer, trusted product content to clients around the globe. We invite readers to learn more about the benefits of our partnership here.

1WorldSync and EnterWorks will both be exhibiting at GS1Connect on June 20-22 in Las Vegas. Visit EnterWorks booth #5 or 1WorldSync booth #17 to learn how the joint PIM solution can help your business.

Learn more about EnterWorks Enable GDSN Solution utilizing the 1WorldSync connector.

References

Have What It Takes To Win In A Post-Digital World? Forrester 2016 http://blogs.forrester.com/carlton_doty/16-05-04-have_what_it_takes_to_win_in_a_post_digital_world

 

Essential 2017 Omni-Channel Tips: How to Beat The Competition In The Digital Era

There is no denying it…2016 was a rough year for various brick and mortar retailers. The 2016 holiday season  wasn’t as merry as industry pundits anticipated, resulting in the following store closures:

  • Hancock Fabrics:  Filed chapter 11; all 255 stores    
  • The Limited: Filed chapter 11; all 250 stores
  • Office Depot/Office Max – Merged; closed 400 stores
  • Sears / Kmart:  Closed 142 stores (10% of its store base)
  • Sports Authority: Filed chapter 11; all 140 stores
  • Macys: Closed 100 stores
  • American Eagle: Closed 150 stores   

The ‘Amazon’ Effect Takes a Bite Out of Brick & Mortar

The root of their problems may lie with a company that isn’t even competing with them for customers at the mall: Amazon.com. Amazon has been poised for success in its pursuit of relentless innovation and a seamless blend of the warehouse processing efficiencies with the e-commerce shopping experience.  

It is estimated that Amazon makes up about 7% of the U.S. apparel market, and that figure is predicted to increase to 19% by 2020 (Barrons 2016). Moreover, the 2016 “State of Amazon” study revealed that Amazon is often involved in almost all online shopping activities (Consumer Goods Technology 2016). Approximately 9 in 10 consumers will check Amazon even if they find a product they want on another retailer’s website.

Blurred Lines & Blended Commerce – The Changing Face of Retail

Today’s consumers float freely from physical shopping to virtual experiences as traditional and modern shopping models unify  into blended commerce. Pure e-commerce retailers are evaluating retail store fronts, while traditional brick and mortar retailers are rapidly pursuing online and mobile commerce channels.

“The shift in retail to the Internet is a huge change… every retail company is trying to manage the transition. It’s not well defined or understood and there’s no road map” said Simeon Gutman, a retailing analyst for Morgan Stanley (New York Times 2015).

Given the consumer’s lofty expectations for an integrated cross-channel shopping experience, there is a steady race to remain relevant in a hyper-competitive retail environment.

While Amazon is expanding its physical presence, Walmart is strengthening its ecommerce strides (eMarketer 2017).

At the beginning of 2017, Amazon announced that it will open its newest brick-and-mortar bookstore in New York City. At the same time, Jet.com – a Walmart subsidiary – announced that they purchased online footwear retailer ShoeBuy.

Achieving Operational Excellence Between Brick And Click

Clearly, today’s world of commerce requires a multi-pronged approach. Trying to match the convenience of Amazon with an integrated supply chain with personalized and trusted product content is no easy feat.

A connected commerce approach supports a harmonious model in which transactional and product data work together to optimize the supply chain process.

1WorldSync and DiCentral have set out to explore how brick & mortar retailers can develop the operational backbone that supports e-commerce investments.

Download their joint whitepaper now  and discover how to:

  • Equip your organizations with strategies that set leading digital commerce business apart
  • Connect cloud-based B2B integration with product content aggregation and syndication;
  • Achieve streamlined end-to-end digital commerce in a cost-effective and scalable manner.

References

  1. “Amazon Could Be Largest U.S. Company by 2020.” Barrons. 2 June 2016, http://www.barrons.com/articles/amazon-could-be-largest-u-s-company-by-2020-1464866783
  2. “Amazon Set to Dominate 2016 Holiday Shopping”. Consumer Goods Technology. 27 September 2016. https://consumergoods.com/amazon-set-dominate-2016-holiday-shopping
  3. “Walmart Plays Catch-Up with Amazon.” New York Times, October 22, 2015. https://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/23/business/walmart-plays-catch-up-with-amazon.html?_r=0
  4. “Omnichannel 2017: Amazon and Walmart Make Moves”. EMarketer. 9 Jan 2017. https://www.emarketer.com/Article/Omnichannel-2017-Amazon-Walmart-Make-Moves/1015000