Featured this week: Dini taking over the New York office, Brander Wall of Fame, and a (plush) snake
Featured this week: Dini taking over the New York office, Brander Wall of Fame, and a (plush) snake
It’s no secret that many brands are experimenting with crafting wearables. In fact, eMarketer expects that nearly half of all online users will be wearing technology by 2019. This year, brands are focused on launching fashionable wearables to the market that extend past watches and explore ways to bring tech to your entire body.
Zeiss Smart Lenses
Zeiss lenses have a shot at gaining traction in smart eyewear where Google Glass fell short simply because they look like everyday glasses. As of now, the most advanced feature of the glasses allows the wearer to view a map to the nearest Starbucks. Zeiss is still working out some kinks while they wait for a partner to help them expand on the currently limited functionality.
Source: The Verge
Like many wearables, the Misfit Ray is focused on fitness and activity tracking, but with its sleek, minimal design, you’d hardly know that it was a tech device. The Ray not only monitors movement and sleep but also notifies you of texts, calls, and alarms. All of Misfits’ elegantly simple designs are based on the premise of creating products “you’re not embarrassed to wear.”
Samsung Smart Clothes
Samsung has a line of wearable tech that focuses on form and function. As far as businesswear, its Smart Suit comes equipped with a gray button that can automatically put your phone on “Do Not Disturb” mode or share contact information. Pair it with the Welt, a belt which detects when you’ve eaten a large meal and expands to give you some room, and you’re basically Tony Stark (almost).
Next up is the Body Compass. While it’s not the most attractive activewear, the tech inside is pretty cool. The silver buttons power sensors that measure your heart rate, body fat, and reps. The Body Compass is just one way that Samsung is helping fitness-centric wearables move past simple activity trackers.
On Boxing Day (December 26), visits to sale and clearance pages spiked to almost 12% of all pages visited and remained one of the top pages visited through the beginning of January. On average, clearance pages made up about 11% of pages viewed on smartphones, 19% on tablets, and 16% on desktops since December 26.Compared to visitors who didn’t shop sales:
Lindsay Kenders, on 1/25/16 12:43 PM
Digital commerce changed forever when shoppers started using their smartphones (and eventually tablets) to browse online. Initially, being available on every possible channel was the issue at hand, but that’s solved relatively easily now with the help of DIY templates and commerce solution providers. Today, the modern concern is merging those channels to become an omnichannel brand.
Omnichannel is a word that is constantly thrown around in the world of commerce, and it’s often confused with multichannel. So, first things first: what’s the difference?
Multichannel is channel-focused and refers to having a tailored experience for each channel, including smartphone, tablet, desktop, and in-store. Currently, most retailers and other brands in the digital commerce space are multichannel because the they provide a variety of ways to shop. This was made possible by adopting separate designs or a type of responsive design, like RESS.
On the other hand, omnichannel is lifestyle-focused and not only provides a customized experience for each channel but also fuses channels for a truly holistic, seamless experience. Shoppers have the freedom to explore these brands anywhere, any time.
2016 is the year that a personalized customer experience should really grow roots in your overall strategy. Here are the 3 things you need to do this year to make your plan become a reality:
Stop thinking in-store sales vs. digital sales because that’s not how it works anymore. Your online and offline teams shouldn’t be competing against each other.
It’s likely that your digital team helped customers discover the product in the first place, and your in-store associates are your first line of defense against a splintered customer experience when shoppers visit the store.
Build teams that focus solely on one channel of your business. Leaders from each team should meet regularly to ensure messaging and goals are aligned. Loop in developers, designers, and marketers where needed. Communication is key to success.
Bring technology to the store
Start experimenting with digitizing the in-store experience. Apps are a great way to get this started.
A consumer-facing app gives shoppers a variety of ways to merge online and in-store, which range from very easy to very difficult. On the easy side of the spectrum, allow customers to store their loyalty cards and coupons digitally, and email order receipts regardless of where they made a purchase. Integrating mobile payment methods, like Apple Pay and Google Wallet, is another relatively easy way to use technology in the store and makes checkouts fast and secure. On the more challenging side, in-store navigation helps customers find the items they’re looking for without having to search for a store associate.
Associate apps help in two important ways: point of sale and endless aisle. Store associates can finalize transactions or exchanges from anywhere in the store, which is especially helpful during peak shopping times. They can also save sales if customers can’t find a product in a certain color or size or if customers are returning an item. Associates are able to look up product information, find out if there are more in stock nearby, or order the item to be shipped to customers’ homes.
Take the in-store experience online
Bringing the store to the digital world is advantageous to customers for two main reasons: store inventory and customer service. Customers don’t always have time to wait on the phone or for a response to an email to resolve an issue or figure out if a product is in stock.
Invest in an online chat system where shoppers can reach out to customer service representatives. Additionally, if you don’t already have a system in place for customers to check product availability, make that a priority. If you do, consider ways to improve it through options, like buy now, pick up in store.
Drive in-store traffic through social media and loyalty programs. Create lifestyle imagery that focuses on your product, brings your brand to life, and allows customers to imagine the product in their own day-to-day life. Supplement that by introducing or pumping up your loyalty program to reward customers.
What does this mean for me?
For most, integrating the smartphone experience into other channels is a large part of becoming an omnichannel retailer. Mobile may not be the way all shoppers purchase, but it’s likely to be the place they discover your products and services. However, mobile doesn’t just mean smartphones and tablets anymore. As more wearables are introduced to the market, like the Apple Watch, mobile is going to mean much more.
Omnichannel is going to take time to figure out, and it’s going to be different for every brand in every industry. Don’t be afraid to test solutions in a small sample of stores to determine its success before rolling it out everywhere. Think of this as a marathon, not a sprint. Find what works for you, but start now so you can stay ahead of the curve.
We hosted our annual post-holiday party at our headquarters in Pittsburgh and continued updating the office.
Two major points that factor into iOS 9's success:
Other features released with iOS 9 included more productive and faster apps, more intelligent search, a "Move to iOS" app to help transition Android users, and ad-blocking enablement.
Judging from Android users' slow adoption rate of Marshmallow, iOS users were more diligent about using the latest OS versions. Overall, tablet users were slower to adopt new OS versions than smartphone users.
Learn more about iOS in the Q4 2015 Mobile Commerce Trends report.
Marshmallow was Android’s big release this year but hasn’t been adopted with the same fervor as Apple's iOS 9, partially due to delays caused by smartphone manufacturers and wireless carriers.
Learn more about Android OS in the Q4 2015 Mobile Commerce Trends report.
Q4 takes a lot out of retailers. There's planning, creating campaigns, number crunching, fulfilling orders, listening to customer feedback, and when it’s all said and done, you’re left thinking, “Now what?”
Sell out your clearance section.
Like you, November and December are the busiest months of the year for many of your customers. It’s a time when they’re often breaking the budget, but now that the holidays are over, they can treat themselves.
After the holidays, mobile shoppers who visit sale or clearance pages convert approximately 75% higher than visitors who don’t shop sales. Promote your clearance section through email blasts and push notifications.
Target gift card receivers (and the gifters!).
Did your customers send gift cards from your site or app? What about e-gift cards? If you collected any mailing or email addresses in the process, use them.
Send the receiver an email reminding them to take advantage of their gift card. Entice them further by offering a one-time discount. Don’t forget about the gifter. Treat them to a discount or other promotion to thank them for their business.
Make returns easy.
There’s nothing worse than driving to the store, fighting the mall crowds, and then realizing that you can’t return an online sale. This scenario was typical 5 years ago, but now, your customers expect better customer service.
Stop viewing online sales and in-store returns as a hit to the bottom line. Instead, use it to your advantage. It’s actually an opportunity for your in-store sales staff to turn that return into an exchange or an upsell that makes everyone happy.
Start planning for next holiday.
What are your goals for next holiday? Do you want to build an omnichannel presence? Consider in-store experiences, like point of sale solutions, kiosks, and apps. Are you an online-only retailer looking to make a change? Think about opening a pop-up shop, like Kate Spade Saturday or Rent the Runway. Thinking about building out a loyalty program? Integrate it with popular digital wallets, like Apple Wallet and Google Wallet.
It’s all about building relationships for next holiday and how you can grow your business in the meantime. Think big and start small. Whatever your goal is, we can help.
By far, the most highly-regarded devices released in 2015 were the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus in September 2015. Other smartphones that hit the market this year with less fanfare included the Samsung Galaxy S6 and OnePlus X.
Despite the new iPad Pro and Kindle Fire making their way onto the market, tablets' share of the overall online shopping market decreased in 2015, and older iPads continued to reign supreme.
The biggest “losers” of the year were iPhone models 4s and older. With the release of the 6s, the iPhone 5 and 6 became less expensive, and Apple’s new replacement plans nearly guarantee that users will continue to upgrade to the most current devices.
The Branding Brand dogs received their very own business cards. We also celebrated scoring highest in the 2016 Forrester Wave on Mobile Commerce and Engagement Platforms, prepared for our annual post-holiday party, and recapped the Q4 2015 Mobile Commerce Trends.
Can't get enough of Q4 trends? Watch the recap video:
Branding Brand, the world’s largest mobile commerce platform provider, today announced it has been named a leader in Forrester Research, Inc.'s report, "The Forrester Wave™: Mobile Commerce and Engagement Platforms, Q1 2016." Branding Brand is a leader in both report categories: Mobile Web and Mobile Apps.
The report identifies and then ranks the 10 most significant mobile engagement solution providers.
According to the Mobile Web section of the report, “Branding Brand sits firmly in the lead. For mobile Web, Branding Brand scored highest in current offering, among the leaders in strategy, and also scored well with its market presence. The firm stands out from the crowd with a top score in each of the core mobile Web categories while keeping its offering updated to meet the current and emerging trends in mobile Web engagement.”
The report also states: “On top of having a strong partner ecosystem, clients cited the firm’s vision and outstanding supporting services as key reasons they continue to work with Branding Brand.”
The Mobile Apps section reports, "Branding Brand has a respectable market presence and is a Leader for the diligence it has shown in keeping pace with market trends. For example, it is one of the few to have heavily prioritized both analytics and in-store experiences, both of which are critical for strategically servicing today’s omnichannel shopper.”
"We are honored to see our platform ranked as a leader in Mobile Commerce and Engagement Platforms, in both Mobile Web and App categories," said Chris Mason, Branding Brand co-founder and CEO. "Mobile commerce continues to evolve and expand further away from basic functionality on a smartphone or tablet. We stay dedicated to innovating and optimizing to help our clients deliver on their promise to provide the best experiences for their customers."
ABOUT BRANDING BRAND: Branding Brand launches and optimizes web, app, and in-store shopping experiences for 200 major brands, including American Eagle Outfitters, Sephora, and Sports Authority. Over two billion customers a year shop on the Company's patented platform, arming its analysts with the largest collection of data on usability best practices. For more information, visit www.brandingbrand.com, or follow @brandingbrand on Twitter.
The Cyber Five (Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday) were by far the highest-grossing online shopping days of the year on smartphones, tablets, and desktops. Across devices, Cyber Monday was the first-, second-, or third-highest day for generating revenue for 82% of all online retailers, according to a sample of 40 U.S.-based brands.
Beside the Cyber Five, visits and revenue peaked early-to-mid December with sales and special offers on days like Giving Tuesday and Free Shipping Day. Outside of the typical shopping season in Q4, Memorial Day ranked as the 7th overall largest-grossing day of the year and Labor Day ranked 16th.
Though top shopping days were skewed toward late November and early-to-mid-December, popular shopping days for each month tended to follow seasonal holidays. Although desktops had the lion’s share of online revenue in 2015 and typically experienced the largest shopping days on Mondays, mobile devices showed the majority of revenue on weekends.
Smartphone shopping is becoming more popular with non-U.S. visitors. In 2015, about 8% of visits and 3% of revenue was generated by foreign shoppers, mainly from Canada, according to a sample of 75 U.S. e-retailers’ smartphone sites. It appears many foreign visitors knew to look for Cyber Five deals on U.S. sites, which resulted in these dates having the highest number of foreign visits. While many countries followed the U.S. trend and visited most during the Cyber Five, other countries completely ignored the year-end holidays and had traffic volume increases closer to regional holidays.
We performed an A/B test on a shoes and accessories retailer's checkout:
Can you guess which test encouraged users to continue through checkout?
Select a test to reveal the winner:
Branding Brand, on 1/7/16 12:59 PM
Across industries, retailers introduced sales earlier, increasing smartphone visits by 71% and conversion by 64% compared to last holiday.
We discovered what people plan to browse and buying during the 2016 holiday shopping season. Check out what we found in the survey results.
People who purchased holiday gifts between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday revealed what they thought of their online and in-store experiences. Take a look at the survey highlights to find out how shoppers felt about this year's Cyber Five.
"Black" and "white" on-site searches accounted for approximately one-third of all color searches on apparel mobile sites in 2015. Searches for black clothing spiked in November, and the most searches for white apparel occurred in May.
Other popular color searches in 2015 included:Blue, Navy
Branding Brand, on 1/5/16 12:00 PM
Tablet and desktop visits and revenue decreased from December 2014 due to Cyber Monday falling in November this year. Despite that, smartphone still experienced an 18% year-over-year increase in visits and a 31% year-over-year increase in revenue.
December 2015's most prominent mobile trends include:
Lauren Maruschak, on 1/4/16 11:13 AM
Compared to the previous week: