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ECommerceTimes.com
Supercharging Customer Retention
July 26, 2021
AfterShip Cofounder and CPO Andrew Chan is an advocate of post-purchase engagement to boost customer retention. He advises that ensuring a convenient experience after purchase -- from shipping, tracking, returns, and reviews -- helps retailers sell more to happy, repeat consumers. We spoke with Chan to hear more about his strategies for supercharging customer retention.
Key Factors When Selecting and Setting Up an E-Commerce Platform
July 23, 2021
One of the fundamental choices that an e-commerce retailer must make is the platform they use to sell their goods and services, because it's not just a store -- it's a place to connect with customers and create a sense of the brand. We spoke with several e-commerce experts to get their take on how retailers can choose and customize platforms to get the right fit between product, culture, and customer.
Better CX Through Customer Journey Management
July 15, 2021
The need for better customer journeys is a challenging goal. Overcoming operational challenges to become more agile in meeting customer needs -- and raising the maturity of the customer experience team -- will be critical to staying competitive in this ever-changing business environment, advised Bloomfire CEO Mark Hammer.
Resale Marketplace Advice: 7 Challenges and Solutions To Overcome Them
July 14, 2021
With resale appealing to a growing share of consumers, chief among them Gen Z, more brands are jumping on the bandwagon. Levi's, Lululemon, and Nike all launched in-house resale programs over the last year. However, the rise of resale comes with many challenges for e-commerce brands and marketplaces. Let's look at the most pressing obstacles for resellers and solutions for how to overcome them.
Creating Paths of Engagement for Effective E-Commerce Journeys
July 6, 2021
From an initial expression of interest, to a purchase, to receiving ongoing support and ultimately buying again, customers take a variety of journeys as they interact with brands. The more a company considers and plans for the paths its customers will follow, the more likely it is that the business will be able to design effective journeys for those customers.
3 Key Considerations Before Moving to a Direct-to-Consumer Model
June 29, 2021
By cutting out the middleman, brands can earn a higher margin and gain direct access to consumers and their data. For these reasons, leading brands such as Nike are aggressively making the shift to DTC, and other large retailers are following suit. However, many forget to take into account three important factors.
What Post-Pandemic Recovery Means to Sales Pros
June 9, 2021
The economic implications of Covid-19 have been devastating for many sectors and individuals. As we head into the summer of 2021 anticipating that most places in the U.S. will be fully open for business, many industries are looking at what the post-Covid recovery will mean for them. For sales professionals, the comeback might certainly bring a windfall but also presents challenges.
It Pays to Nurture Your Existing Customers
May 20, 2021
Important as it is to continually acquire new customers, it's every bit as vital for businesses to nurture existing clientele. The E-Commerce Times talked with several experts in customer engagement to get their thoughts about why it's critical to cultivate current customers -- and how to encourage them to stick around.
Three-Part Evolution
April 30, 2021
I've been writing about the importance of platform as a tool and as a strategy for a while -- and not only with regard to Salesforce. I'd say most CRM vendors have a platform story; others like Oracle and Zoho come up as examples all the time. The difference with Salesforce is that it's looking beyond the platform to what it does, not only for its customers but also for the company's own positioning.
How to Avoid the Cost of Churn With Better Customer Experiences
April 27, 2021
Customer churn is costing mid-market companies an average of $5.5 million per year. Retailers need to avoid the expensive mistakes that result in such disastrous churn. This presents a clamorous alarm to marketers. One solution to this costly predicament is to get sales teams to work effectively, and consistently, in CRM platforms.
Need More From Your Digital Ad Spend? Adopt Contextual Alignment
April 21, 2021
Many digital marketers spend too much on targeting an already loyal customer base rather than tapping into new streams. Dr. Jorge Barraza, professor of applied psychology at the University of Southern California, has a plan to help advertisers reach consumers that would not normally buy their products, by using the principle of contextual alignment.
Newslettering vs. Blogging
April 16, 2021
Newsletters have become popular over the last few years; and especially over the past year during you-know-what when in-person meetings were taboo. Many companies are trying to figure out how to best leverage them, and new software platforms make it increasingly easy to produce one or more. What interests me about the newsletter format is how blog-like it is.
Transitioning to Hybrid Commerce
April 9, 2021
Certainly, the pandemic has caused some upheavals in American business -- and it's true that the record of progress in economics is littered with creative destruction. But the absolutist prognostications about the future of digital commerce taking over the world made me think "here we go again." Trees don't grow to the moon, retrenchment is common.
How to Ride the 'Consumer Wave' to Better Customer Experiences
April 5, 2021
Even the most customer-centric businesses can overestimate their performance or miss the broad trends in customer behavior. That is why NICE inContact conducts annual surveys that track the customer experience from the perspective of businesses and consumers. CRM Buyer discussed the recent findings and related issues in more detail with the company's CEO Paul Jarman.
Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Planning? Ask These Questions
April 2, 2021
Engaging in disaster recovery requires a company to think about many things, but despite the long checklists that are created to accomplish DR, there are some areas that frequently get overlooked in business continuity and disaster recovery planning. With this in mind, it is imperative to address all areas of concern before a disaster strikes, not during or after the event.
AI, ML Not Yet a Plug-and-Play Proposition for Marketers: Study
March 24, 2021
Personalization and automation, two of the hottest buzzwords in the lexicon of CRM practitioners, are all the rage for marketers these days. But only 14 percent of organizations are using artificial intelligence or machine language to automate their marketing campaigns. A survey by Rackspace Technology reveals that the majority of organizations worldwide lack the internal resources to support these high-powered CRM initiatives.
The Role of Marketing Attribution in the New Age of E-Commerce
March 24, 2021
When it comes to marketing strategies, nothing is more important than analyzing and measuring the actual effectiveness, influence, and ROI of every campaign. Understanding the contribution of every channel and the customer conversion process enables marketers to adapt and adjust accordingly. Let's discuss what marketing attribution is; and how it can help e-commerce companies grow their businesses.
Implementing Iterative ROI
March 22, 2021
In the old days you could identify weak spots in your business and purchase software systems designed to eliminate or at least to significantly reduce those liabilities. Performing an ROI analysis usually consisted of two parts: a before study to determine the business' steady state; and a post implementation analysis to determine improvement. Good as that sounds, such studies left out a lot.
The CRM Systems Training Issue
March 15, 2021
As the CRM solution set continues to grow, it's likely that training systems will be increasingly important. That growth has the effect of converging vendor functionality at roughly the same place, making tertiary product attributes like training systems important differentiators. Taking this into account, the next big thing in CRM might not be a new customer-facing app -- but one that faces employees.
The Three C's of Optimizing CRM Data
March 12, 2021
Monitoring and maintaining your data is an ongoing, strategic process. By educating your CRM users -- and making their data entry process as easy as possible -- you can ensure that better-quality data will be entering the system. Here's how you can give your company a true advantage -- and empower everyone who relies on your CRM's data.
How to Rebuild Trust After E-Commerce Blunders
March 10, 2021
One of the big marketing decisions confronting e-commerce vendors today is whether current performance is good enough. Online vendors need to consider their customers' shopping experience in order to assess existing barriers to stronger shopper responsiveness to digital storefronts. For retailers who drop the ball with errors such as inaccurate product feeds and promised products that never arrive, it's redo time.
Shifting Shopping Trends Push Retailers to Rethink Marketing
February 25, 2021
Shopping trends are expanding as the pandemic's effect on e-commerce continues, forcing retailers to adapt their marketing strategies to meet new consumer expectations and demands, according to a new report. Consumer adoption of digital shopping is driving increased use of user-generated content, new private labels, and access to product sampling.
New Customer Experience Needs and Commerce Trends for 2021
February 24, 2021
Commerce analysts do not see consumers shedding their newfound buying options in the wake of a post-pandemic marketplace. Concerns for health safety, social distancing, and remote working will remain priorities for many shoppers. Merchants who demonstrate that they are able to quickly get products to consumers, resolve issues with customer service, and provide fast delivery and returns will be the ones that thrive.
Oracle's Reinvention
February 16, 2021
Oracle's continued strides in the tech space say a lot about perseverance and deep pockets. It was a darling of the 20th century tech era, rising from a startup in the database wars and becoming the sole surviving independent database company. But at some point, success leveled out its rise and it became just another big company. Then came the challenge of cloud computing.
Revving Up for CRM in 2021
January 11, 2021
This might be a big year for CRM. I say might because I am not clairvoyant, and humility is on the resolutions list. CRM has gone through five 5-year cycles during the past few decades. That trend feels as old as SaaS at this point, and I think we're going to embark on a new cycle that will take roughly five years to reach fulfillment. The big question now is: "What will it be?"
Acquiring and Retaining Customers in an Era Without Brand Loyalty
January 7, 2021
E-commerce is now at an all-time high, with global sales figures projected to reach $4.1 trillion in 2020, almost doubling since 2015. While the spectrum of global customers has broadened, so has the scope of competition. As the need for customer support grows, there is a golden opportunity for brands to capitalize on the changes fueled by the pandemic and emerge from the crisis with a newfound customer base.
Who Values Value Pricing?
January 4, 2021
The idea that CRM products should be priced according to the utility they deliver sounds good, but it raises a lot of questions too. With value pricing, you might expect the cost of CRM to rise and fall as a business gets more or less use and value from its investment, but who gets to determine the value received and, while we're at it, what is the right measure of value?
Where to in 2021?
December 10, 2020
The front office is moving out the front door and into the world. Actually, it's exiting via the Internet, the windows and side doors, to form the basis of what will be the 'next normal' or whatever future historians want to call it. For a while, when we were just dabbling with mobility and social media, we could ignore all that -- but no more.
Salesforce Riffs on New Work Styles
November 30, 2020
Back in Q1 Salesforce threw out its annual plan and did a pretty good imitation of a startup or a jazz band. They developed products like Work.com and Salesforce Anywhere as solutions to the evolving need for systems that would help their customers cope with the pandemic. The products supported both working remotely and safeguarding the premises when people returned.
The Great CRM Shift of 2020
November 19, 2020
It is often said that only a poor workman blames his tools and only an inferior vendor blames the customer for their troubles with a product. But too many user organizations just don't seem to be adopting CRM to the degree that it takes to be successful -- even after more than two decades of trying.
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Given the spread of the Covid-19 Delta variant, if my employer requires me to return to the company's location in 2021, I will...
Agree because I'm fully vaccinated.
Agree if the company institutes a mandatory mask requirement and other safety protocols.
Comply reluctantly, because I can't afford to lose my job, but start looking for different employment.
Resign immediately so I can dedicate all of my time to find a job I feel is safer.
Resign because I'm not vaccinated and don't want to risk infection to myself or others.