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Search and Merchandising Gazette – September, 2012

What’s in This Month’s Newsletter?
  1. E-Commerce Challenges Survey
  2. Secrets to Searchandising Success
  3. Dynamic Merchandising with DollarDays
  4. Agile Online Merchandising White Paper

 

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For decades retailers have successfully used in-store merchandising to increase sales using tried and true techniques such as displaying popular or seasonal items at the store’s entrance, using end-caps to feature discounts and offering add-ons and accessories near related products to increase average purchase sizes. The actions they took were backed by detailed analytics that told them which products to promote and what type of promotions to use based on past success.

In the highly competitive e-commerce market, online merchandising is even more critical to building a customer base and increasing sales. While many of the techniques are similar, the technology to deliver these promotions is vastly different.

Your e-commerce platform typically provides some merchandising capabilities. However, these tools typically require you to “hard-wire” the merchandising item by item, which will: (a) require a laborious process to manage merchandising promotions, and (b) make it difficult to adjust the promotions for new products, events (seasons, holidays, etc.), trends and styles.

This is where a search and merchandising platform with natural language capabilities such as EasyAsk adds tremendous value. Natural language not only makes your search better, but also makes it easier for merchandisers to create dynamic merchandising promotions and deliver more compelling offers based on the products customers are exploring.

The following articles can help you better understand the importance of online merchandising and the new techniques and tools available to help you increase sales with better merchandising.

E-Commerce Challenges Survey

Earlier this year Retail Systems Research LLC performed a custom survey to gauge the biggest business challenges to increasing online sales in 2012. When asked about places their sites could improve to increase sales, the top 4 answers were all related to merchandising, with the top answer specifically calling out merchandising as a challenge:

  • Improving online merchandising and assortment, 65%
  • Providing richer product details, 61%
  • Investing in cross-channel shopping capabilities, 59%
  • Improving search and browse capabilities, 43%

Click here to read the full article in Internet Retailer magazine on this survey and the interesting results.

Secrets to Searchandising Success

How does a retailer take the same tried and true methods from their brick and mortar operations and apply them to online merchandising? Does each technique translate into the online world? What new techniques are available to the online merchandiser?

This Website Magazine article examines the similarities and differences between in-store merchandising and online merchandising. It lists the five most important things to keep in mind when using online merchandising to increase your online sales and customers’ satisfaction.

Dynamic Merchandising with DollarDays

With over 250,000 products that are constantly changing and promotions that need to be adjusted at a moment’s notice, online B2B retailer DollarDays International faces challenges every day with online merchandising. Even with such a complex environment DollarDays thrives by continually pushing out new online merchandising promotions based on seasons, trends, cross-sell opportunities, inventory and more.

We invite you to read the full DollarDays Customer Success Story to see how the company uses natural language to dynamically adjust the promotions on the company’s highly successful e-commerce site.

Agile, dynamic merchandising with natural language rules

The secret to better merchandising is a dynamic platform that makes it both easier for merchandisers to define promotions, and can offer highly attractive offers to visitors in real-time. Natural language merchandising rules delivers both these capabilities.

For example, natural language allows you to define cross-sell offers that are delivered dynamically, based on the characteristics of the products the customer is exploring. This simplifies the job of the merchandiser and makes offers more compelling to visitors.

Please download the white paper Making Merchandising Faster and Easier with Natural Language to see how you can use dynamic online merchandising tools to increase sales.

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