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adidas NEO: Interactive Window Shopping Experience

We have already seen some really cool window shopping experience by Neet-a-Porter at the beginning of the year. However, this version by adidas NEO is actually taking window shopping to a next level: an interactive digital window concept that connects to your smartphone. With this concept, it is possible to shop at their store after hours without an app or scanning a QR code.

This completely interactive in-window shopping experience lets consumers flick through clothing board according to your own taste and play with a model. They are even trying on every item. So, it is easier to see exactly how the clothes look (on a model). Now, you just need to imagine how you look like in the clothes.

This is how it works: By typing in the special URL you can connect your smartphone to the window and take control of a virtual shopping bag. Any product dropped into the window’s shopping bag instantly appears on your mobile ready to save, purchase or share with friends.

You can check out this window at adidas NEO Nürnberg store for a six-week pilot test.

FaceDeals checks-in customers via facial recognition…for deals

Most of our shopping experience through Social CRM solutions are not seamless yet. However, a new solution might challenge the past days of manual check-ins… and deals. FaceDeals comes up with one of the freakiest social innovation we have seen so far. The deal platform is connected to a camera that gets positioned at the entrance of a shop or a restaurant. When customers are coming in the camera checks them in automatically to the place they enter via facial recognition detection. Then, the system is delivering some text message that people can get at the bar, cash point or point of sale.

PS: I can already hear people arguing about data protection, security risks and so on. Still, I think this is a nice innovation. What do you think?

The new car retail experience: (Digital) showroom by AUDI

Remember the days, when you wanted to go in shops to see the desired car – experiencing it’s dimensions, the color, the feeling when touching the surface, and all of that? Let’s face it, there were many opportunities to get that shopping experience the digital way. Now, AUDI takes a new approach on addressing customer. They created the new AUDI City “Digital Showroom”.

The AUDI way is a fantastic new form of retail car shopping experience for a car brand. Do we need a big showroom on an expensive high-street building? No! This one fits in any street shop. Yes, it does! It is even possible in the classic shopping centers or malls. It means that car brands can move closer to customer’s day-to-day shopping trips. And no problem to let them feel the leather, the paint or any other materials they might want to touch.

Experiencing the Audi City Store is a virtual shopping trip in a traditional shopping atmosphere – just with digital projections on the walls to experience the driving fascination in big digital walls – right in front of them.

Cool or that, the question stay if this is hot?!

How mobile is exploding in 2012

The world is talking mobile. Desktops are dead. Smartphones and tablets are rocking! The market for mobile is massive and continues to grow around the world. Mobile is redefining the world we live in, the way we interact and the way we communicate on a daily basis.

The following infographic by Trinity explains nicely in a collection of stats how much the mobile market will influence our daily shopping behavior in the future. You just have to have a look at some numbers…

Worldwide, there are 6 Billion mobile subscribers. Obviously some own two devices which means that probably not 87% of the world population has one. The biggest growth comes from China and India that account for 30% of the growth. In only the last three years, developers have thrown 300.000 apps on the market. One of the main reasons why 1.2 Billion users access the Internet from their mobile devices. And the winner of all this development? Google! They sign 2.5 Billion USD in mobile ad spendings a year.

Mobile is exploding all over the world in 2012. And no marketer can dare not to see this development…

5 Tips for Managing an Ecommerce Website

Whether you’re experimenting with online sales or have already run businesses in the past, when you are first creating an ecommerce website you’ll want to keep a few tips in mind. These can help you use today’s technology to find and retain a steady client base.

1. Use Simple Web Design
With such a high degree of competition out there, even for the most obscure products, you’re going to have to put some time and effort into your website to make it stand out from the crowd. You don’t have to have any web design experience to do this if you use an ecommerce software program with templates. These can usually be customized in terms of logo, font, and colour themes. Aside from this assistance, you’ll want to use your imagination and think of a catchy name for your business as well as an easy-to-navigate site.

2. Organize your Product Catalogue Using Categories
A big part of making your online store easily navigable for customers lies in how you organize your products. It’s easier for customers when you arrange your products into logical categories or collections, so that they can find what they’re looking for more easily. Adding a “sale” category can help customers feel that they’ve stumbled onto a bargain, so think about running promotions and sale items as a separate collection altogether. Be sure to include high quality pictures of the products along with descriptions.

3. Make Payment Easy for Customers
Once your customers have located the items that they wish to purchase, some ecommerce business owners feel that they have already sealed the deal. In actuality, this is where it can all go wrong if you make it hard for a customer to pay you. You’ll want a smooth and easy checkout system that offers multiple methods of payment. One example of this would be a Shopify ecommerce website, which provides a shopping cart and integrated payment system. You’ll want to look for a platform of this nature to help encourage the final sale. If you’re selling products internationally, it’s also helpful to include a currency converter. Be sure to provide a telephone number or email address for customer support for added security.

4. Create a Blog
There are numerous ways to market your online store, including using social media and email newsletters, among others. Yet one of the most effective ways to get in touch with a wide net of potential customers is through creating your own blog. This is also a good way to showcase your brand and personality, thus creating a valuable first impression.

5. Use Analytics to Track Customers
Although many online business owners use analytics tools to track what visitors end up purchasing on their website, you can make use of these tracking tools for a host of other purposes. For example, with analytics you can find out how your customers found you, which URL’s are referring customers to your online store, and what search terms they’re using. With this information, you can more tightly hone your marketing efforts to reach a wider audience.

This post is a guest post from Shopify.

Study shows that consumers are frustrated with online paying

Harald Wanetschka / pixelio.de

How often do we stop our online purchasing process? How often do we not pay what is chosen to be in the basket? And how often do we leave an online shop frustrated?

In a recent study by Mastercard Worldwide conducted by Harris Interactive we acknowledge how consumers are feelings about online commerce, as well as their habits on mobile shopping. According to the report, U.S. consumers replied that one of their biggest issues is “entering payment, billing and shipping information.”

It is not surprising to anyone probably that the only other issue more annoying to online buyers is knowing still one that has not changed in 15 years: People would like to know how a product feels, fits or looks.

“Online and mobile shopping puts a host of new options at consumers’ fingertips, but the current checkout process needs improvement to fully realize the potential of these important retail channels,” Geoff Iddison, Group Executive E-Commerce and Mobile, MasterCard Worldwide

According to Iddison the study also shows that consumers want a simpler, faster way to enter account information and less time filling out forms.

The funny thing for me is that the world still wants something that does not exist (and which I have thought about inventing in the online advertising world, too): a trusted source that handles safely personal information in one place.

58% of online shoppers said they would like that easy access to information in order to simplify their online check-out experience across the Internet. Apart from that almost one out of four respondents replied they had abandoned a shopping cart before completing their online or mobile purchase. 

On the MasterCard company blog, Brian Gendron -a company spokesman- said the poll shows consumers want a simpler online payment experience. He mentions…

“Consumers still find that a lengthy checkout experience can cause frustrations, which can sometimes mean lost business for merchants when consumers fail to click ‘confirm purchase. Consumers want a simple and fast process to complete their online transactions so they can spend more time finding the exact products that they want.”

So, how about you and your online purchasing experiences? Would you say the study is correct in their findings?

Study: Web-traffic boosts in-store sales

In a recent study the research companies comScore, Accenture and dunnhumbyUSA found some significant relevance between in-store sales and a company’s web presence. The study was based on a panel of CPG customers and one million U.S. Internet users who have given comScore explicit permission to have their online activities continuously measured and matched to their in-store brand buying behavior provided by dunnhumbyUSA.

The report comes to the conclusion that consumers who visit a website prior to their shopping experience in a company store spend 34% more with that company and 57% more on products or services based on their specific industry sector. It also states that visitors of brand websites are frequent buyers of the brand in retail stores. It shows that 42% more of these clients finish their transactions than non-visitors. Furthermore, website visitors are also heavier buyers in a brand’s product category. They are spending 53% more in their category dollars than non-visitors.

“Since website visitors have higher affinity to the brand and the overall product category, there is an opportunity for brand marketers to drive loyalty through personalizing the website experience, catering to the preferences of their best customers.”John LaRocca, Vice President, Strategic Partnerships, dunnhumbyUSA

And again another study highlights the importance of content marketing as the new emerging trend in marketing. Shoppers were more aggressive in their approach to understand and evaluate their purchases prior to their visit in shops as a result of the massive information access through the web. According to the research, content marketing plays a significant role here. So, campaigns on the web not only add value to web shopping but also -and for some companies and brands more importantly- will help to drive and boost in-store habits and sales – apart from positioning a brand’s capability.

“Marketers who create compelling (brand) website experiences for consumers are extremely effective in driving incremental and profitable in-store sales. Analysis shows that consumers visiting the best of the 10 CPG brand websites evaluated in the research study, spent over 200% more on the brand than non-visitors.” Jerry Lohse, Senior Director, Accenture Interactive

Based on the fact that Brafton reported some weeks ago that the average consumer visits more than 10 web pages before a purchase decision, this study marks an important point in the relevance between online and offline shopping. This might be catalyzed by the new opportunities that smartphones, tablets or Augmented Reality (see real-life community shopping) offer, and shows the straight relationship between the two shopping experiences which more and more merge to one close shopping cycle.

Spot On!
More companies are realizing that offering web shoppers the same information and service as in-stores will lead to more purchase at both ends of the shopping cycle: online and at offline locations. The challenge for companies is to differentiate the shopping experience by using SoLoMo (social – local – mobile). Here the question for the future will remain whether in-store shopping needs to become more of a lifestyle experience or adventure to attract more consumers to join in-store activity (see IKEA Sleepover), or wether people will want to have real people around them and thus make it a social reality world, rather than a social web world…

Community Shopping on the street – NET-A-PORTER.COM's Window Shop

Augmented Reality shopping is definitely a new trend these days. NET-A-PORTER have launched their Augmented Reality Shopping Windows in different capitals around the world like Sidney, Munich, London, Paris and New York.

The following video demo comes from late last year’s Fashion Night Out celebrations in London and New York. It will be rolled out globally now for the new Karl by Karl Lagerfeld collection. Consumers need to download the NET-A-PORTER iPhone/iPad app, then visit the stores and can use the Augmented Reality like a new shopping experience.

When pointing the iPad camera at the window, this will publish 360 degree product models doing their best on a video catwalk. It also displays product information, the clothes price and obviously the ability to purchase immediately.

Isn’t this a cool idea to offer a 24/7 shopping life? These doors are always open in the future. Well, ok their online shop as well but it is a different kind of shopping experience right…? Community shopping on the street…

THX for sharing!

ComScore study: 31% of banner ads get lost for viewers

© carlos castilla - Fotolia.com

Companies and brands love to book page impressions with publishers, shopping and trading sites. Users find themselves being bombarded with banner ads all over the web – and not often do these ads add any value on customer journeys and the digital shopping experience. Often they bore us (dresses and dishes), annoy us (gay ads for married people) or make us hate companies brands (you love a and get b beer brands). Real Time bidding (RTB), (Behavioral) Retargeting technology and demand side platforms (DSP) will become game changers in the ad space in the future.

Sounds good but do advertisers get what publishers promise today, just on the basis of ad impression buying? Well, not really…

Yesterday, ComScore announced their “Validated Campaign Essentials (vCE)” which is said to be a Holistic Measurement tool for verifying the effectiveness of advertising campaigns and their subsequent targeting tactics. Thus, ComScore can double-check of where the ads are being delivered, where they are positioned within a page and who’s eyeballs they meet with the optimization add-on to know where they can be better positioned and at what time. The new technology or tool (vCE) will allow ComScore check campaigns effectiveness on a demographics basis.

ComScore definitely recognizes clients need for a world of better performance with campaigns for a reasonable future of advertisements. However the good news, when you worried about the effectiveness of your last campaign, there is much worse stuff to think about…

ComScore has found, in a recent comprehensive study, that over 31% of online display ads get lost for eyeballs of potential viewers, and for some websites it is even a scary number of 91%. Reasons are obvious: Some of these ads are below the fold. User might not scroll down far enough to view them, and vice versa. Some people just scroll too quick and thus get passed them before they have been loading.

The findings also state that as many as 15% of campaign ads were delivered to viewers outside of the targeted media plan places. An average of 4% of ad impressions found viewers in locations that weren’t on the plan, or where products weren’t available. Do you still wonder why the above mentioned banner campaigns reach us? But ComScore works on the issue…

“One big issue with internet advertising is that not all ads that are served end up being seen. This is a core issue raised by the Making Measurement Make Sense (3MS) initiative. In order for marketers to have the same confidence in the digital channel as they do in TV, we need measurement around the visibility of ads.” Mike Donahue, EVP, Strategic Partnerships, ComScore

Spot On!
Google will penalize companies and platforms that have too many ads above the fold in the future: 3 ads per page is sufficient and strategically clever, Google advices in this video. Just imagine your banners are being delivered to platforms that are damaging for your brand. It happens. Impressions appear beside content that were defined as “not brand safe” by the advertiser. Of all tested campaigns, 72% showed up on pages that had objectionable content, as defined by the brand. Now, that ComScore and advertisers like Chrysler, Discover, E*TRADE Financial, Ford, Kellogg’s, Kimberly Clark and Kraft among others push the development of the third-party tracking, there might be hope that consumers and clients get banners delivered that are targeted the right way. Nevertheless, companies need to start thinking about the right call-to-action in order to get the right conversation figures…

Sales and Social Media? Feedback is the key!

We have heard that 1 in 3 of the younger generation will their online shopping via their mobile phones. Now, another study shows the power of recommendations around the holiday season. Mr. Youth did some research among 4.500 shoppers and found how Social Media could become the game changer in Christmas shopping in 2011.

Some key findings… and marketers better listen up now!

– 80% of Social Media users who received feedback did a purchase afterwards
– 66% of Black Friday sales were a result of Social Media interactions
– 52% of Social Media users are willing to pay more for brands they trust
– 36% of Social Media users trust brands that have a Social Media presence

How about you? Are you relying on your friends, fans and followers recommendations this holiday season?