Hosted Online Web Shopping Cart Software, integrate shopping cart into website.#Integrate #shopping #cart #into #website


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We pride ourselves on being flexible. If you have a particular need or situation, we have a team of developers ready to explore and assess your ideas. We won’t try to squish you into a one-size-fits-all box!

Integrate shopping cart into website

Integrate shopping cart into website

Integrate shopping cart into website

Integrate shopping cart into website

Integrate shopping cart into website

Integrate shopping cart into website

Integrate shopping cart into website

Just add a bit of HTML. You won’t believe how easy it is, eCartsoft™ is a Expression Web shopping cart, 100% compatible with all website development tools, including all versions of Microsoft Expression Web, Google Web Designer, Adobe Dreamweaver, Adobe Muse, Expression Web, Microsoft sharepoint Designer, CoffeeCup HTML Editor, Apple Inc iWeb, Trellix, NetFusion, NetObjects html/text editors, and all other HTML development tools. “NO HTML KNOWLEDGE NO PROBLEM”, All you need to know is how to fill-out forms and cut & paste. That is all! Our HTML Shopping cart Wizard gives you all of the HTML code you need to paste into your site to start selling your products online now using ecartsoft’s website shopping cart. Our hosted shopping cart enables experienced web masters take full advantage of our advanced features to maximize site design, integrate Coupon Codes, linkpoint, Authorize Net, Your Pay, rewards progarms, sell Gift Certificates, create loyalty programs (Buyers rewords, tell-a-friend referral programs) and much more .


Esscentual Brands, Creators of Premier Home Fragrance and Bath and Body Products, Announces Expanded Reach


#claire burke retailers

#

May 22, 2007 06:00 ET

Esscentual Brands, Creators of Premier Home Fragrance and Bath and Body Products, Announces Expanded Reach Into Canada

Popular Brands Vitabath and Claire Burke Now Available Online for Canadian Residents

PHOENIX, AZ–(CCNMatthews – May 22, 2007) – Esscentual Brands, the preeminent supplier of home fragrance and bath and body products, is expanding its online service to include most of Canada for its popular brands Vitabath and Claire Burke. Unchanged from their American counterparts, the Web sites’ addresses in Canada for the two brands will be www.myvitabath.com and www.myclaireburke.com .

“Esscentual Brands has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with consumers in Canada. Our Claire Burke and Vitabath brands have been in distribution in the country for 25 years and have attracted a loyal following,” said Mark Grodsky, president of Esscentual Brands. “As a result we wanted to make sure that access to these products was as effortless and convenient as possible so we established a Canadian online presence.”

Esscentual Brands maintains a Canadian subsidiary with a full distribution center, which allows for items ordered in Canada to be shipped from Canada without being subject to customs fees and international shipping charges. This provides a convenient and cost-effective method for Canadian customers to order directly online. Online service enables access to nearly all of Canada with a few exceptions to the Nunavut, Yukon and the Northwest Territories. Products offered in Canada are identical to those sold in the United States.

Esscentual Brands is the owner of the Claire Burke and Vitabath product lines, which are sold exclusively through premium retailers, gift stores and directly via their catalog and online stores.

Celebrating its 50th Anniversary in 2007, Claire Burke is recognized internationally for its quality home fragrance products such as scented candle gifts and aromatherapy fragrance diffusers, as well as attractive design elements. Now a leader in the home fragrance industry, the company was an idea that began with a $200 investment and a passion for botanicals by brand creator and namesake Claire Burke, an interior designer. The brand has grown to become a thriving business that’s now recognized worldwide. To celebrate its anniversary, Claire Burke plans to introduce several new home fragrances including White Lavender, The Sea , Pomegranate Plum, and The Haunted Home .

For nearly 50 years, Vitabath has been a leader in the beauty and wellness industry. Formulated by European skin care specialists with a unique blend of vitamins and moisturizing elements, the Vitabath product line was established in 1957 with the creation of the company’s first product, Vitabath bath and shower gelee. Since that creation, Vitabath has expanded into an entire line of fine bath and skin care products including moisturizing bath & shower gelee, moisturizing hand and body lotion and gelee bar soap. Each product is created using quality ingredients and has helped to establish Vitabath as one of the longest-standing international brands in the wellness and beauty industry.

About Esscentual Brands

Esscentual Brands’ vision is to be the preeminent supplier of fragrance-oriented home and bath products. In 2003, Esscentual Brands, LLC became the consumer product company of Claire Burke . Esscentual Brands is also the parent company of Vitabath , another well-established brand for personal care. The company’s entire focus is on building long-term brand equities through premium retailers, gift stores and direct sales by providing products of exceptional quality. Esscentual Brands is funded though private equity investors Mankwitz Kurtz Investments with its U.S. office located in Scottsdale, Arizona and the Canadian subsidiary located in Concord, Ontario.


Turn risk and opportunities into results: retail sector – The top 10 opportunities – EY


#retail opportunities

#

Turn risk and opportunities into results: retail sector – The top 10 opportunities – EY – Global

Turn risk and opportunities into results Retail sector – Top 10 opportunities

The size of the global middle class is expected to triple between now and 2030

The top 10 opportunities for retail sector

  1. Rising emerging market demand and rise of global middle class
    The size of the global middle class is expected to triple between now and 2030. Yet 29% of retail sector respondents to our global survey reported that their efforts to enter these markets had yet to produce any positive results.
  • New marketing channels and social media
    Across the world, the number of people with regular access to the internet has increased dramatically. The retailers we surveyed were relatively likely to report that their company had at least begun to engage with social media — 28% said so, and a further 28% said social media was actively being investigated.
  • Competitive differentiation via CSR and green branding
    The global financial crisis, instead of shifting focus away from corporate social responsibility (CSR), seems to have made it more of a priority. Almost three in four companies in the retail sector consider CSR “as a must.”
  • Multichannel approach
    The growth of e-commerce and m-commerce, and recent rapid shifts in consumer behavior, have increased the benefits for retailers that can stay in touch with consumers through multiple channels.
  • Demographic change
    Demographic changes — aging and migration, for example — are leading to rapid growth in specific market segments. Individuals in developed countries are increasingly seeking to deny the aging process.
  • Private label
    The recent recession has increased sales of private label goods, and many consumers report they will remain loyal to these brands. Retailers have embraced this opportunity by introducing tiered brands for different income brackets and shopper needs.
  • Launching new products and services
    Consumer behavior is changing, and constant innovation of products and services from retailers is required as a result. Yet 23% of the retail executives in our survey mentioned that their organization has not been innovative enough.
  • Global urbanization
    As one panelist said, “The world’s population is undergoing a historic shift from rural to urban.” Higher consumer incomes and increased customer concentration will present considerable opportunities for the retail sector.
  • Competitive differentiation via local branding
    There are significant benefits to local sourcing of products; they are often healthier, fresher and more environmentally friendly. As one retail executive commented, “[T]here is a growing trend toward ‘solidarity’ with local regions that can provide brands with lots of consumer kudos.”
  • Enhancing efficiency in the supply chain
    The supply chain presents a significant opportunity for retailers to reduce inefficiencies and compete on cost, which is increasingly crucial as companies in low-growth consumer markets battle for market share.
  • Opportunity ladder

    The opportunity ladder presents a snapshot of the top 10 opportunities for the retail sector.

    The ladder is divided into four sections, each representing the four drivers of competitive success identified in our Competing for growth research. Although this study focuses on corporate performance, there are still interesting comparisons and parallels to be made that are relevant for the retail sector.

    • Customer reach — to optimize their potential market
    • Operational agility — to maximize their effective response
    • Cost competitiveness — to optimize their profitability
    • Stakeholder confidence — to secure both talent and support for achieving their goals

    Top of the Ladder: The opportunities at the top of the ladder are those that the commentators we interviewed thought would have the greatest impact on retail sector bodies’ performance in the years ahead.

    Arrows: Arrows indicate whether the commentators thought the potential performance impact of the opportunity would rise or decline by 2013.


    Turn risk and opportunities into results: Retail sector – The top 10 risks – EY


    #retail opportunities

    #

    Turn risk and opportunities into results: Retail sector – The top 10 risks – EY – Global

    Turn risk and opportunities into results Retail sector – Top 10 risks

    Seventy-three percent of retail respondents had focused on cutting sales, general and administrative expenses, while 11% had targeted costs of goods and services.

    The top 10 risks for retail sector

    1. Low-growth consumer markets
      Despite growth returning to the world economy following the recession of the last three years, this risk remains significant. The recession underlined a structural shift to a low-demand growth environment in the developed world: retailing in Europe is “a zero-sum game where a player’s gain is another’s loss.”
  • Regulation and compliance
    Traditional regulatory interactions centered on the rate case are being supplemented by often-contradictory pressures regarding environmental impact, efficiency and security of key infrastructure.
  • Inability to control costs/rising input prices
    As an economist we interviewed noted, “Low margins mean that costs [have] major effects on profitability.” Seventy-three percent of retail respondents had focused on cutting sales, general and administrative (SG
    /* 728×90, создано 05.02.11 */
    google_ad_slot = “6127977750”;
    google_ad_width = 670;
    google_ad_height = 90;
    //–>

  • Evolution of Digital Signage in Retail: Turning Customers Into Fans – Innovation Insights #fmcg #jobs


    #retail digital signage

    #

    Evolution of Digital Signage in Retail: Turning Customers Into Fans

    Digital signage has advanced far beyond simply replacing posters with LCD screens into a core component of a sound retail strategy. Forward-looking retailers have linked their print, TV, billboard and Web messaging, created a social media presence, and put mobile solutions in place. Now, they are building digital in-store experiences, further driving the evolution of digital signage.

    Five years ago there was a widespread belief that online sales would replace brick-and-mortar selling. That has not happened. Online sales continue to grow, but the value of an in-store experience is still critical.

    Digital signage has gone through several stages of evolution. Early signage focused on delivering information. Digital signs could be updated quickly based on variables such as time of day and customized to a region or specific location. For years this was the state of digital signage while the industry focused on lowering the total cost of ownership (TCO).

    As prices improved, the next evolution occurred — the introduction of interactivity turned the digital sign into a kiosk and enabled retailers to provide a higher level of customer service. Now they had a dynamic, interactive option that could be deployed at their stores.

    Finally, the consumer electronics industry started using digital signage as a customer engagement tool, making it central to the customer experience. Now the digital in-store experience involves the shopper through mobile devices, by integrating social media and by creating an experience that entices the shopper into the retailer’s store.

    Building a Relationship With a Shopper

    Shoppers know you by the print, TV, radio, billboard and direct mail presence you create. But they are skeptical of the messages that bombard them every day from you and your competitors.

    Conversely, when shoppers interact with you, shop at your store, download your app, or join your loyalty program, the relationship moves up a notch. Shoppers become customers and move into the world of owned media. They give you the ability to reach them with targeted messages. But they are likely to have a customer relationship with your competitors, too.

    It is when you transition the shopper from customer to fan that you have a truly durable relationship. It is unlikely that a shopper will be a fan of yours and your direct competitor. Some shoppers are fans of multiple brands, but usually not in the same category. As fans, they are saying they like and trust you and will recommend you to their contacts. A fan will post about you on social media sites, talk about you in blogs or forums, and identify themselves with you and your products or services. These are earned media relationships — you have earned their trust, respect and appreciation.

    In order to achieve this elevated status, not only must you create an experience with the shopper that is attractive and sustainable, but you must also constantly work to strengthen the relationship.

    Using the In-Store Experience to Strengthen the Relationship

    When fan shoppers come to your store, they want to feel that you value them. One way to accomplish this is to personalize their experiences while they are in the store. Faisal Galaria, senior director at Alvarez Marsal, posted an article at The Guardian titled “Digital media seeks to capture the audience of one.” Galaria discusses how services like Netflix have given users the ability to choose exactly what they want. For example, don’t wait for a favorite show to air on television; watch it on Netflix. Don’t buy the whole album; just buy the specific tracks you like. Don’t buy the whole magazine; just read the article you want online. Fan shoppers want to feel like an audience of one.

    Fans feel empowered when they are given exclusive access to products, promotions and services. You can also simplify the order and delivery process, make it easy to find a size, color or style, and empower them to fulfill their goals. You can link digital screens to your loyalty program, enabling fan shoppers to scan loyalty IDs and be presented with options unique to them.

    When you personalize and empower shoppers, you engage them and they feel connected to you. They will honor that relationship and connection as long as they feel it is as important to you as it is to them.

    Strengthening the relationship will also increase revenue from existing customers, which is less expensive than capturing new ones.

    You Need an Engagement Strategy

    It takes a strategy to move a shopper from just a consumer to a fan. It is important to define how you build and maintain that relationship each time the shopper interacts with your brand and clearly how you plan to engage and inspire them. Your focus may be soccer moms; but a soccer mom shopping at 10 a.m. will have different inspirations than a soccer mom shopping at 10 p.m.

    Using Digital Signage Tools to Carry Out Your Engagement Strategy

    Here are some examples of how digital signage can be used to create engagement.

    • Endless aisle kiosk – Most retailers want the ability to show more product than their square footage allows. Endless aisle kiosks let the customer look through more inventory and options than can be displayed on the show floor.
    • Shelf-edge displays – A small digital display mounted at the point-of-decision creates a dynamic experience at the most important moment. Recent innovations in screens and a type of display called electronic paper make this a viable option.
    • Endcaps – Traditionally a place to showcase promotional products, endcaps are a great attraction point for products or product categories. With the use of digital media endcaps, you can quickly change the focus or increase the number of items being showcased.
    • Welcome boards – Your customers’ first impression each time they enter your store can be a dynamic message board that highlights your brand and your relationship with shoppers and the community.
    • Digital menu boards – Wherever you have a menu board, you have the opportunity to highlight products. Whether you are providing automotive services or hot dogs and sodas, the digital menu board is a dynamic selling tool.
    • Infotainment – Wherever your shoppers wait, such as pharmacies, photo processing centers, optical departments, bakeries or customer service counters, you have the opportunity to influence them. Reducing perceived wait time improves the customer experience.
    • Remote access to experts – Specialty retailers have a challenge when product experts on the sales floor are unavailable; customers cannot get the level of service they expect. At an “Ask the Expert” kiosk, the customer can initiate a video chat with an expert—who can also be helping customers at multiple locations from a remote call center.

    Analytics – It Doesn’t Matter if You Can’t Measure It

    One of the long-standing debates about the use of digital media in the retail environment is whether the increase in sales is due to the media or some other factors.

    Web site analytics measure who is visiting, where they are coming from, how long they stay, and what path they follow through the Web site. That same information is valuable to a brick-and-mortar store. Analytics give you the ability to compare trends in usage against results at the retail store and should be part of your digital in-store solution as well.

    It is also important to measure the growth in fans, look at the messages of these shoppers, and measure their impact. For example, how many blog postings, tweets or Facebook postings do they create? When do they post, how many people respond, comment, or thank them for the information?

    Does it All Really Matter?

    In the final analysis, digital signage improves the customer experience by creating options for retailers to personalize offerings — thereby separating themselves from a commodity-based, price-driven relationship.

    This was the most significant conclusion drawn from a story about the in-store experience by David Moth, deputy editor at Econsultancy, and an Adobe vice president. They maintain that retailers don’t want to represent just another product, as for example in the Amazon catalog where the key differentiator is price.

    There is further proof that the in-store experience is both important and valuable. In a press release, Oracle reported that 81 percent of shoppers are willing to pay more for a better customer experience. Not only were they willing to pay more, but 44 percent are willing to pay a premium of more than 5 percent for the better experience.

    So take the plunge. You have already done the customer acquisition work. Now turn that customer into a fan.

    Mike Tippets is vice president of the Business Solutions Group, North American Division at Hughes.


    Esscentual Brands, Creators of Premier Home Fragrance and Bath and Body Products, Announces Expanded Reach


    #claire burke retailers

    #

    May 22, 2007 06:00 ET

    Esscentual Brands, Creators of Premier Home Fragrance and Bath and Body Products, Announces Expanded Reach Into Canada

    Popular Brands Vitabath and Claire Burke Now Available Online for Canadian Residents

    PHOENIX, AZ–(CCNMatthews – May 22, 2007) – Esscentual Brands, the preeminent supplier of home fragrance and bath and body products, is expanding its online service to include most of Canada for its popular brands Vitabath and Claire Burke. Unchanged from their American counterparts, the Web sites’ addresses in Canada for the two brands will be www.myvitabath.com and www.myclaireburke.com .

    “Esscentual Brands has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with consumers in Canada. Our Claire Burke and Vitabath brands have been in distribution in the country for 25 years and have attracted a loyal following,” said Mark Grodsky, president of Esscentual Brands. “As a result we wanted to make sure that access to these products was as effortless and convenient as possible so we established a Canadian online presence.”

    Esscentual Brands maintains a Canadian subsidiary with a full distribution center, which allows for items ordered in Canada to be shipped from Canada without being subject to customs fees and international shipping charges. This provides a convenient and cost-effective method for Canadian customers to order directly online. Online service enables access to nearly all of Canada with a few exceptions to the Nunavut, Yukon and the Northwest Territories. Products offered in Canada are identical to those sold in the United States.

    Esscentual Brands is the owner of the Claire Burke and Vitabath product lines, which are sold exclusively through premium retailers, gift stores and directly via their catalog and online stores.

    Celebrating its 50th Anniversary in 2007, Claire Burke is recognized internationally for its quality home fragrance products such as scented candle gifts and aromatherapy fragrance diffusers, as well as attractive design elements. Now a leader in the home fragrance industry, the company was an idea that began with a $200 investment and a passion for botanicals by brand creator and namesake Claire Burke, an interior designer. The brand has grown to become a thriving business that’s now recognized worldwide. To celebrate its anniversary, Claire Burke plans to introduce several new home fragrances including White Lavender, The Sea , Pomegranate Plum, and The Haunted Home .

    For nearly 50 years, Vitabath has been a leader in the beauty and wellness industry. Formulated by European skin care specialists with a unique blend of vitamins and moisturizing elements, the Vitabath product line was established in 1957 with the creation of the company’s first product, Vitabath bath and shower gelee. Since that creation, Vitabath has expanded into an entire line of fine bath and skin care products including moisturizing bath & shower gelee, moisturizing hand and body lotion and gelee bar soap. Each product is created using quality ingredients and has helped to establish Vitabath as one of the longest-standing international brands in the wellness and beauty industry.

    About Esscentual Brands

    Esscentual Brands’ vision is to be the preeminent supplier of fragrance-oriented home and bath products. In 2003, Esscentual Brands, LLC became the consumer product company of Claire Burke . Esscentual Brands is also the parent company of Vitabath , another well-established brand for personal care. The company’s entire focus is on building long-term brand equities through premium retailers, gift stores and direct sales by providing products of exceptional quality. Esscentual Brands is funded though private equity investors Mankwitz Kurtz Investments with its U.S. office located in Scottsdale, Arizona and the Canadian subsidiary located in Concord, Ontario.


    Turn risk and opportunities into results: Retail sector – The top 10 risks – EY


    #retail opportunities

    #

    Turn risk and opportunities into results: Retail sector – The top 10 risks – EY – Global

    Turn risk and opportunities into results Retail sector – Top 10 risks

    Seventy-three percent of retail respondents had focused on cutting sales, general and administrative expenses, while 11% had targeted costs of goods and services.

    The top 10 risks for retail sector

    1. Low-growth consumer markets
      Despite growth returning to the world economy following the recession of the last three years, this risk remains significant. The recession underlined a structural shift to a low-demand growth environment in the developed world: retailing in Europe is “a zero-sum game where a player’s gain is another’s loss.”
  • Regulation and compliance
    Traditional regulatory interactions centered on the rate case are being supplemented by often-contradictory pressures regarding environmental impact, efficiency and security of key infrastructure.
  • Inability to control costs/rising input prices
    As an economist we interviewed noted, “Low margins mean that costs [have] major effects on profitability.” Seventy-three percent of retail respondents had focused on cutting sales, general and administrative (SG
    /* 728×90, создано 05.02.11 */
    google_ad_slot = “6127977750”;
    google_ad_width = 670;
    google_ad_height = 90;
    //–>


  • Turn risk and opportunities into results: retail sector – The top 10 opportunities – EY


    #retail opportunities

    #

    Turn risk and opportunities into results: retail sector – The top 10 opportunities – EY – Global

    Turn risk and opportunities into results Retail sector – Top 10 opportunities

    The size of the global middle class is expected to triple between now and 2030

    The top 10 opportunities for retail sector

    1. Rising emerging market demand and rise of global middle class
      The size of the global middle class is expected to triple between now and 2030. Yet 29% of retail sector respondents to our global survey reported that their efforts to enter these markets had yet to produce any positive results.
  • New marketing channels and social media
    Across the world, the number of people with regular access to the internet has increased dramatically. The retailers we surveyed were relatively likely to report that their company had at least begun to engage with social media — 28% said so, and a further 28% said social media was actively being investigated.
  • Competitive differentiation via CSR and green branding
    The global financial crisis, instead of shifting focus away from corporate social responsibility (CSR), seems to have made it more of a priority. Almost three in four companies in the retail sector consider CSR “as a must.”
  • Multichannel approach
    The growth of e-commerce and m-commerce, and recent rapid shifts in consumer behavior, have increased the benefits for retailers that can stay in touch with consumers through multiple channels.
  • Demographic change
    Demographic changes — aging and migration, for example — are leading to rapid growth in specific market segments. Individuals in developed countries are increasingly seeking to deny the aging process.
  • Private label
    The recent recession has increased sales of private label goods, and many consumers report they will remain loyal to these brands. Retailers have embraced this opportunity by introducing tiered brands for different income brackets and shopper needs.
  • Launching new products and services
    Consumer behavior is changing, and constant innovation of products and services from retailers is required as a result. Yet 23% of the retail executives in our survey mentioned that their organization has not been innovative enough.
  • Global urbanization
    As one panelist said, “The world’s population is undergoing a historic shift from rural to urban.” Higher consumer incomes and increased customer concentration will present considerable opportunities for the retail sector.
  • Competitive differentiation via local branding
    There are significant benefits to local sourcing of products; they are often healthier, fresher and more environmentally friendly. As one retail executive commented, “[T]here is a growing trend toward ‘solidarity’ with local regions that can provide brands with lots of consumer kudos.”
  • Enhancing efficiency in the supply chain
    The supply chain presents a significant opportunity for retailers to reduce inefficiencies and compete on cost, which is increasingly crucial as companies in low-growth consumer markets battle for market share.
  • Opportunity ladder

    The opportunity ladder presents a snapshot of the top 10 opportunities for the retail sector.

    The ladder is divided into four sections, each representing the four drivers of competitive success identified in our Competing for growth research. Although this study focuses on corporate performance, there are still interesting comparisons and parallels to be made that are relevant for the retail sector.

    • Customer reach — to optimize their potential market
    • Operational agility — to maximize their effective response
    • Cost competitiveness — to optimize their profitability
    • Stakeholder confidence — to secure both talent and support for achieving their goals

    Top of the Ladder: The opportunities at the top of the ladder are those that the commentators we interviewed thought would have the greatest impact on retail sector bodies’ performance in the years ahead.

    Arrows: Arrows indicate whether the commentators thought the potential performance impact of the opportunity would rise or decline by 2013.


    Evolution of Digital Signage in Retail: Turning Customers Into Fans – Innovation Insights #coupons #for


    #retail digital signage

    #

    Evolution of Digital Signage in Retail: Turning Customers Into Fans

    Digital signage has advanced far beyond simply replacing posters with LCD screens into a core component of a sound retail strategy. Forward-looking retailers have linked their print, TV, billboard and Web messaging, created a social media presence, and put mobile solutions in place. Now, they are building digital in-store experiences, further driving the evolution of digital signage.

    Five years ago there was a widespread belief that online sales would replace brick-and-mortar selling. That has not happened. Online sales continue to grow, but the value of an in-store experience is still critical.

    Digital signage has gone through several stages of evolution. Early signage focused on delivering information. Digital signs could be updated quickly based on variables such as time of day and customized to a region or specific location. For years this was the state of digital signage while the industry focused on lowering the total cost of ownership (TCO).

    As prices improved, the next evolution occurred — the introduction of interactivity turned the digital sign into a kiosk and enabled retailers to provide a higher level of customer service. Now they had a dynamic, interactive option that could be deployed at their stores.

    Finally, the consumer electronics industry started using digital signage as a customer engagement tool, making it central to the customer experience. Now the digital in-store experience involves the shopper through mobile devices, by integrating social media and by creating an experience that entices the shopper into the retailer’s store.

    Building a Relationship With a Shopper

    Shoppers know you by the print, TV, radio, billboard and direct mail presence you create. But they are skeptical of the messages that bombard them every day from you and your competitors.

    Conversely, when shoppers interact with you, shop at your store, download your app, or join your loyalty program, the relationship moves up a notch. Shoppers become customers and move into the world of owned media. They give you the ability to reach them with targeted messages. But they are likely to have a customer relationship with your competitors, too.

    It is when you transition the shopper from customer to fan that you have a truly durable relationship. It is unlikely that a shopper will be a fan of yours and your direct competitor. Some shoppers are fans of multiple brands, but usually not in the same category. As fans, they are saying they like and trust you and will recommend you to their contacts. A fan will post about you on social media sites, talk about you in blogs or forums, and identify themselves with you and your products or services. These are earned media relationships — you have earned their trust, respect and appreciation.

    In order to achieve this elevated status, not only must you create an experience with the shopper that is attractive and sustainable, but you must also constantly work to strengthen the relationship.

    Using the In-Store Experience to Strengthen the Relationship

    When fan shoppers come to your store, they want to feel that you value them. One way to accomplish this is to personalize their experiences while they are in the store. Faisal Galaria, senior director at Alvarez Marsal, posted an article at The Guardian titled “Digital media seeks to capture the audience of one.” Galaria discusses how services like Netflix have given users the ability to choose exactly what they want. For example, don’t wait for a favorite show to air on television; watch it on Netflix. Don’t buy the whole album; just buy the specific tracks you like. Don’t buy the whole magazine; just read the article you want online. Fan shoppers want to feel like an audience of one.

    Fans feel empowered when they are given exclusive access to products, promotions and services. You can also simplify the order and delivery process, make it easy to find a size, color or style, and empower them to fulfill their goals. You can link digital screens to your loyalty program, enabling fan shoppers to scan loyalty IDs and be presented with options unique to them.

    When you personalize and empower shoppers, you engage them and they feel connected to you. They will honor that relationship and connection as long as they feel it is as important to you as it is to them.

    Strengthening the relationship will also increase revenue from existing customers, which is less expensive than capturing new ones.

    You Need an Engagement Strategy

    It takes a strategy to move a shopper from just a consumer to a fan. It is important to define how you build and maintain that relationship each time the shopper interacts with your brand and clearly how you plan to engage and inspire them. Your focus may be soccer moms; but a soccer mom shopping at 10 a.m. will have different inspirations than a soccer mom shopping at 10 p.m.

    Using Digital Signage Tools to Carry Out Your Engagement Strategy

    Here are some examples of how digital signage can be used to create engagement.

    • Endless aisle kiosk – Most retailers want the ability to show more product than their square footage allows. Endless aisle kiosks let the customer look through more inventory and options than can be displayed on the show floor.
    • Shelf-edge displays – A small digital display mounted at the point-of-decision creates a dynamic experience at the most important moment. Recent innovations in screens and a type of display called electronic paper make this a viable option.
    • Endcaps – Traditionally a place to showcase promotional products, endcaps are a great attraction point for products or product categories. With the use of digital media endcaps, you can quickly change the focus or increase the number of items being showcased.
    • Welcome boards – Your customers’ first impression each time they enter your store can be a dynamic message board that highlights your brand and your relationship with shoppers and the community.
    • Digital menu boards – Wherever you have a menu board, you have the opportunity to highlight products. Whether you are providing automotive services or hot dogs and sodas, the digital menu board is a dynamic selling tool.
    • Infotainment – Wherever your shoppers wait, such as pharmacies, photo processing centers, optical departments, bakeries or customer service counters, you have the opportunity to influence them. Reducing perceived wait time improves the customer experience.
    • Remote access to experts – Specialty retailers have a challenge when product experts on the sales floor are unavailable; customers cannot get the level of service they expect. At an “Ask the Expert” kiosk, the customer can initiate a video chat with an expert—who can also be helping customers at multiple locations from a remote call center.

    Analytics – It Doesn’t Matter if You Can’t Measure It

    One of the long-standing debates about the use of digital media in the retail environment is whether the increase in sales is due to the media or some other factors.

    Web site analytics measure who is visiting, where they are coming from, how long they stay, and what path they follow through the Web site. That same information is valuable to a brick-and-mortar store. Analytics give you the ability to compare trends in usage against results at the retail store and should be part of your digital in-store solution as well.

    It is also important to measure the growth in fans, look at the messages of these shoppers, and measure their impact. For example, how many blog postings, tweets or Facebook postings do they create? When do they post, how many people respond, comment, or thank them for the information?

    Does it All Really Matter?

    In the final analysis, digital signage improves the customer experience by creating options for retailers to personalize offerings — thereby separating themselves from a commodity-based, price-driven relationship.

    This was the most significant conclusion drawn from a story about the in-store experience by David Moth, deputy editor at Econsultancy, and an Adobe vice president. They maintain that retailers don’t want to represent just another product, as for example in the Amazon catalog where the key differentiator is price.

    There is further proof that the in-store experience is both important and valuable. In a press release, Oracle reported that 81 percent of shoppers are willing to pay more for a better customer experience. Not only were they willing to pay more, but 44 percent are willing to pay a premium of more than 5 percent for the better experience.

    So take the plunge. You have already done the customer acquisition work. Now turn that customer into a fan.

    Mike Tippets is vice president of the Business Solutions Group, North American Division at Hughes.