The Magento platform’s flexibility and scalability are its strengths.You have two options for customizing the Magento platform: you can use community-developed extensions available on the Magento Marketplace or build your own modules.While the Magento Marketplace makes it easy to add new themes and features, a custom module approach may be necessary in order to realize a specific vision.To save time and money, many merchants opt for a hybrid approach. They customise pre-built extensions to help them make informed decisions when expanding their store’s capabilities beyond the box.
When adding an extension or custom feature to Magento, there are many things to consider.Maintenance and development efforts can reduce the upfront cost.These problems can be avoided or minimized by selecting the right module and following Magento best practices.
FINDING THE RIGHT MODULE
Finding an extension that fits your business needs exactly can be difficult and may introduce labour cost for discovery/exploration/analysis of modules in the ecosystem.Although the Magento Marketplace is the best place to search for extensions, it’s possible to make concessions to ensure that you get as many modules as possible to meet your goals.To achieve the desired result, you may need to customize it further after you have chosen a module.Magento 2 allows you to customize the platform in many ways.
Is the extension you are considering doing everything you expected?This might be true for today but business requirements may change and the extension may need to be modified to meet new requirements.It may be a good idea to create a custom module.Magento 2 can be improved in many ways, most notably:
* plugins This feature, also known as interceptors allows you to intercept most public functions, alter arguments, output or override internal logic.
* Observers– This can be used to trigger specific code in response to an event.You can create your own events, in addition to many already built-in events.
* Dependency injection – Allows overriding and extending classes – and many more.
These and other techniques allow you to directly control third-party and core platform behaviours in order to achieve desired results.
PLATFORM VERSION MODIFICATIONS
It is impossible to predict how long a provider of module support will be available or whether a module’s relevance will change as your integrations evolve.This is the reality of software updates.It is recommended that customizations be tested in an environment before they are implemented. This will ensure that there are no code conflicts and that the functionality or performance of the upgrade does not suffer.When deciding to integrate with a module provider, it is important to evaluate their longevity and ability to provide support over the long-term.Verified providers can be found on the Magento Marketplace.
QUALITY ASSURANCE AND TESTING
It is not enough to add the extension and call it a day.Are you aware of all possible scenarios?Magento 2 module installation is very simple. However, testing can be costly. It’s well worth it.Knowing the details of how a module works in edge conditions and with different configurations will help you debug any potential problems down the road.
Once you have uploaded your extension, the vendor might release a newer version that includes bug fixes or additional features.You may choose to upgrade depending on your requirements.It is easy to upgrade to a newer version of a Magento module using the Magento Marketplace.To see the Module Update Guide, click here.
Magento extensions are an integral part of any implementation.Magento has many extensions that can be used to enhance your experience.You will have the best control over your customers’ shopping experience by being able to modify their behavior or create your own module.
If you are based in France, and have an online WooCommerce store, you may need all invoices and credit notes certified.
You are probably asking yourself these questions:
Why is it necessary to certificate invoices and credit notes?
These rules do they apply to me?
What can I do to ensure that I am in good standing?
We have the answers.
What is the purpose of having my invoices certified
French VAT Fraud Prevention Law – Article 88 of Finance Act ndeg2015-1785 – requires that certain merchants use a “secure cash register system” or software.
This law was created to stop people hiding their income and reduce VAT fraud which amounts to 17 billion Euros per year.
What is a “cash register software or system”?Here is the government definition:
A cash register software system is a computer program that stores and records payments in exchange for goods or services.
Simply put, it’s any software system that issues sales transaction documents such as invoices or credit notes or sales receipts.
These four rules are required for any payment register software or system to be certified and compliant.
Inalterability : Payment operations data are recorded and stored but cannot be altered.
Security Data is encrypted and returned to France’s Administrative Fiscale. Guaranteed to be in its original condition.
Retention/Conservation: Data must be kept for six years with annual, monthly, and daily closures.
Archiving Data is stored and classified by date and made easily readable by Administration personnel as part of a control.
Software certified by Infocert ( /NF525 certificate), LNE, Laboratoire national de metrologies et d’essais (a government agency) or self-certified systems can be used.
Sanctions and compliance control
A certification is required to verify compliance with your cash register system.Your systems can be checked by the Administration Fiscale at any time, and without notice.
You’ll be penalized EUR7,500 for each software/system that you fail to provide a certificate or attestation.You have 60 days to comply. If you don’t, you will be penalized EUR7,500.You will be fined EUR7,500 and you will have to comply again within 60 days. This can make certification difficult.
Who is responsible for following the VAT Fraud Prevention Law
Let’s begin at the beginning.You need to understand how this law affects you.
All prices are subject to VAT
You can sell products or services to customers that are not subject VAT, such private individuals.
A cash register system is used or software.
Register payment transactions
You can accept other payment methods than credit cards or transfer payments via a bank or credit institution.
This excludes self-entrepreneurs and professional as well as B2B businesses that only sell to professionals.You are affected if you have customers that are VAT-exempt and customers that aren’t.
To double-check that you are complying with the VAT fraud prevention laws you have the option to use an online test by the French government.
WooCommerce allows me to comply with the law.
This anti-fraud law is applicable to brick-and mortar stores as well as eCommerce websites. You will need to certify credit notes from orders placed on your WooCommerce website if you meet the conditions.
An extension for WooCommerce , which provides an external certification solution, simplifies things.
Kiwiz uses blockchain technology to authenticate invoicing documents.It is 100% compliant with the VAT antifraud law because it combines security, inalterability, and archiving.
Kiwiz is not a cash register software. It’s a certification brick that enables the payment software (in this instance, WooCommerce), to be secure and in compliance.It creates invoices from your eCommerce store.
How do you get started?
You will need to subscribe to one their plans to get started with Kiwiz certificationHere’s how it works:
Go to Kiwiz.io/prix to choose the plan that corresponds to your monthly transactions.
After signing up for a Kiwiz plan, you will receive an email with the credentials to configure the extension.
Start creating your invoices.
Kiwiz’s subscription plans are based on the number of transactions you make each month. Certification never ends.You will be charged more if you process more transactions than your monthly allowance.You will automatically be charged for a lower volume plan if you process fewer transactions than the monthly limit.
You have 30 days to test the service for free, and you can cancel anytime during that period.
Addify, a Pakistan-based development company, has become a success story.The 35-member team has already achieved sales of more than $100k per month since its inception on WooCommerce.com.
They are the developers of many popular extensions such as Custom User Registration Fields and Request a quote, Role Based Pricing. B2B for WooCommerce. Hide Price & Add To Cart Button.
Although they started their sales on CodeCanyon initially, they soon realized that the WooCommerce Marketplace was the best option.The company also develops for two online stores platforms. This has allowed them to enjoy higher sales and a greater ecosystem of extensions.
They are still climbing to the top. In a few months they will be adding 15 more team members and moving into a new office.
Through Zoom, the WooCommerce team met Ali, their co-founder, to discuss Addify’s success, where they are headed, and what other developers can do to follow in their footsteps.
Mehmood and Muhammad, my co-founders, met twelve years ago when I was working for another company.We became close friends, and we kept in touch while we developed our marketing and development skills.It became obvious that we could do something on our own.
Muhammad is a specialist in Magento and Prestashop design.When we develop extensions for new technologies, he builds technical teams. Mehmood oversees WordPress development. It’s the largest team that we have.
However, I am responsible for all aspects of support, including marketing, product research, and user experiences.It is my responsibility to decide what products I want to create, which features they should include, and how I will market them to site owners.
We now have 35 employees on the team. We’re moving into a new building to increase our staff to at least 50.
Muhammad was developing a Magento website and needed a way to exempt certain users from paying taxes.We couldn’t find a solution so we asked ‘who else might be interested?’
We tried CodeCanyon, but it was not the right solution.
We tried WooCommerce, but it was not the right solution.
Although there was one solution that a developer offered on his website it did not include many features.We knew there was more.We created the Exempt extension, and we made our first sale on WooCommerce.com in September 2019.
Q.Q.Why did you choose to concentrate on this?
We might be able to find solutions for other industries.We have all been involved in non-eCommerce development before so it’s something we could do.We noticed that these types of websites are often quite stagnant after they’re built.
eCommerce is constantly improving the user experience and experimenting with marketing.The potential for success is greater.A good extension and support can result in many solutions being purchased by the same store owner over time.They will likely continue to use our support because they are looking for more information and the most recent features.
WooCommerce has 28% eCommerce market share. It is the most popular eCommerce platform so it makes sense to offer your products to the largest audience.
Q.Q.Why did you choose this route over other options?
We discussed for several weeks before we finally decided on where to go.It was difficult because we knew everything about each platform.There are always compromises.This was a huge debate.
We chose WordPress because of its SEO.Both WordPress and WooCommerce are SEO-friendly.
It was also easy to create.WordPress is much faster than other platforms. For example, we were able to develop a website in just two weeks. On the other platform, it took us two months.
We chose WordPress and WooCommerce because we knew that we would need lots of space to grow and there would not be a shortage of extensions and plugins to help us do this.
Fourth, we concluded that maintaining other platforms would prove more costly due to the higher server costs.We decided that WordPress would be more cost-efficient in the long-term.
WooCommerce allowed us to quickly get up and running.
Q.Q.Why did you choose to migrate to the WooCommerce Marketplace instead?
We knew WooCommerce.com was the official platform so we wanted to be there.We felt we should be there as an authorized company.
WooCommerce.com is our main focus now and we are releasing 98% exclusively there.
We realized that the WooCommerce Marketplace had a large customer base and more revenue for vendors after the releases of the first two extensions.We changed our CodeCanyon profile from exclusive to non-exclusive, and we added products to our website as well as the WooCommerce Marketplace in order to offer multiple sales channels.
CodeCanyon does not have a minimum pricing policy.Individual developers set their products at extremely low prices which makes it difficult for companies to grow and maintain products, and offer top-quality after-sales services.
The WooCommerce Marketplace team is more like a family to us because they listen closely to our feedback.
Q: It all comes down to a better environment, great support and a larger audience for sales.
Yes, WooCommerce offers subscription options for extensions.This is very important.
To continue receiving updates and support, customers can renew their WooCommerce Marketplace subscription.
This drives us to improve the product, add new features and ensure it is compatible.This is good news for store owners.It’s also good for us from a revenue perspective.
We are familiar with the available extensions because we have worked in the eCommerce industry for over 120 years.We listen to our customers and read forums to find out what they are looking for.
Once we have identified a group of extensions we like, we do marketing research to evaluate them. We then decide if the extension is worth our time and if it has any unique features.We will consider whether a similar product exists and what we can do to make our product stand apart.
Every support ticket I receive is read by me personally.Although I am not a programmer, I can help them quickly. However, I can help people get an idea of their needs and then have our developers tackle it.
Q: Are your development decisions always market-based?Are developers driven by passions that can dictate the next steps?
We are very particular about the products we release.We are completely focused on the needs of our customers and how useful our solutions can be.We do however listen to the ideas that our developers have.Choose Userrole is an example of an idea that was generated by the development team.This became an integral part of many bestsellers.
We have also created extensions even though our research did not support them.We created them anyway, because customers requested them.
It must be B2B to WooCommerce.We knew this solution would be popular because of the high volume of searches.
Problem was that the term “WooCommerce Business to Business” is too broad.It was necessary to determine what functions people were actually looking for in order to solve this problem.We released individual extensions as we identified them.We eventually had many robust solutions that we could combine into one WooCommerce B2B extension.
Q: What are your costs plans?What is more costly to create a new product, or keep existing products?
It is more costly to maintain an existing one than to create new ones.It’s not about how expensive it is, but what our customers want.It is important to provide quality support and new features. Regular updates are also necessary in order to keep extensions running.
We believe that providing high-quality support can be costly.It’s also important to ensure that customers are satisfied.Customers who are happy leave positive reviews, which is critical for sales.
I also look at support requests as they are received to see what features people would like so that we can develop the next update.Sometimes I can even get ahead of an issue to fix it with the next update.This is going to end up being cheaper than continuing support for a large conflict.
Support is great for customers but also for us because it helps us to identify new opportunities.
The refund policy has also affected and motivated us.
Q: How does this (refund policy), impact you?
WooCommerce offers a hassle-free, 30-day refund policy.Customers don’t need to provide any reason or information to request a refund.
CodeCanyon gave us the opportunity to answer customer questions and assist them in solving their problems.This was definitely something we preferred at first.
We are motivated by the possibility of getting back our investment.We must be our best and keep pace with the product.It pays off if you do a great job.
Q: How do I create product pages for my extension?These are some of the best on the market.
Right now, I write and develop it all myself.It’s very important because everythingshould go on the product page.It’s been so hard to find out what people want so we need to communicate it and put it all on the page.
One review said that everything was on the product page.“Don’t expect anything more.” That review made me smile because it meant that the product page had done its job.
Q: Do you think that your involvement with WooCommerce has helped you to be closer to the community?
Yes. We also get to work closer with SkyVerge.That’s fantastic.
We also have a great Slack platform.We can also reach out to other developers if we have a problem.They also benefit from this because they don’t want their product to cause conflict for anyone.
We work together to find solutions, and then we take the lessons learned into consideration for our future plans.
Q: What is different about where you are now than when you started?
We have better processes, a new development approach, and better support teams. Our products are more reliable when they go on the market because we test more.
Q: What advice would you give to other developers who are considering joining the WooCommerce Marketplace.
It’s all about planning the right products, and then offering good support.To find the right extensions for people, you must do your research.You’re on the right track if you do that.
Aftersales support is key to long-term success, according to us.People may not return to you again if you don’t do the job right.
In some cases, the customer may have initially requested a refund because they purchased an alternative extension but then came to us for support as the developer didn’t provide the required assistance.
You don’t have to be alone when you addify
Many developers such as Addify are enjoying success on WooCommerce Marketplace.Developers who are willing to work extra to help the community and provide quality extensions are needed.
MoEngage adopted a Culture of Care in order to deal with the pandemic
MoEngage has been promoting employee wellness for more than a decade. We have taken steps to provide care and wellness programs to all our team members, across the country as well as in other countries.We have made so many investments in the safety and wellbeing of our employees.We also experienced the second wave of severe hardships, which affected many of us in our community. We have dealt with the situation in our own way.We have learned to embrace empathy during these difficult times.All that we do will be done through the lens of support and care.The top concerns are health, financial security, and job safety. What an organization does now to its employees will make a lasting impression that will be remembered for many years.
These are some of the MoEngage measures for this year.
Extended Remote Work until October 2021Each of us can stay safe indoors, care for our families, and have flexibility and independence.
Vaccination Support & Reimbursement:We are still working with
Our team was able to book free vaccination slots at multiple locations across the country through our health and wellness partner.
This reimbursement model allows people to get inoculated without the Health Partner’s permission. It will reimburse 5 family members (including the team-member) and allow them to continue to get their costs covered.
All team members must be vaccinated by local authorities or hospital partners in major cities
To provide video consultations for free, tie-ups with medical professionalsOur team members can get online help from doctors, and are treated for COVID or other conditions virtually.All members of our team have instant access to doctor consultations.
Salary payments in advanceAndCashoutsAll team members have been provided with medical insurance to cover their expenses.
Paid recovery leave:For employees who have been diagnosed with COVID, they are entitled to up to 14 days paid leave to allow them to focus on their recovery.
Wellness LeavesTo help members recharge, it is important to focus on family and self-care.Some other changes to our work methods include flexible meeting times and no-meeting Wednesdays.
All Home Office Setup AssistanceThis document will help you to make it easier to set up the infrastructure for your home office.
Employee Assistance ProgramOur Health Partner will allow our team members to access a Health Coach, Nutritionist, General Practitioner consultation, discounts on medicines, stress and burnout consultings, and more!
Ex gratia Payments:Any member of our team who is diagnosed with COVID-19 will receive ex-gratia payments equal to two years salary and a voluntary contribution from our team.
COVID Task Force and Support GroupThey were created internally to assist our team members in obtaining hospital beds, oxygen supplies, and medicines in all cities during peak times.They help to monitor the response strategies of our members, their families, and friends during the pandemic.
Wellness EngagementsOur wellness partners work throughout the year to engage our employees across the globe and promote a healthier lifestyle. We can even get them together for yoga or guided meditation sessions, COVID awareness sessions, COVID awareness, or even a Bollywood theme dancing party to keep the spirits high.
Our greatest asset is our team members. A culture of care makes a difference in their lives.We can overcome this crisis together by maintaining a constant communication, effective change management, leaders who lead from the front, daily checks-ins, empathy and flexibility.We realized how important it was to be healthy and well-being-mental and physical-as we dealt with this pandemic and its aftermath.When we were named as one of the top responders, a lot of what we did for care was recognized.Top 25 Highest Rated Company to work for by Battery Ventures and GlassdoorLast year.
We won’t be returning to work for at least the next half year, as much as we would like to.We are going to take this opportunity to make sure everyone is happy and healthy by creating a culture that promotes care and wellness.
Data is the new gold: How consumer brands in Southeast Asia are winning with insights-driven engagement
According to them, a business has only two functions: marketing and innovation.The evolution of the former over the last few years has been a boon to consumers around the globe.The modern customer expects and demands a personalized, enjoyable, and value-oriented experience.
It is the only way to be successful in today’s digital-first world. This has been proven by savvy brands.It begs the question, how can brands achieve such sophistication in their customer engagement practices?insights-led interaction is the answer.
Insights-led Engagement is a business framework that uses data to guide customer engagement decisions.Analytics to predict and analyze user behavior. Personalizing communication and content based upon these insights. Then, data-driven engagement is orchestrated. Finally, a focus is placed on retaining users via an omnichannel strategy.
These are just a few of the many reasons insights-driven engagement is so important for digital-first brands.
This helps you to engage users in a more personal way than the spray-and-pray approach that many brands have used for a while.
Customer loyalty can be improved by building relationships with prospects and customers.
Your brand will have a personable personality that can relate to and converse with your audience.
This is only the tip of an iceberg.Brands who use insights-led engagement to grow their businesses have experienced 29% more growth than brands that have not yet tried it.
Framework for Insights-led Engagement at a Glance
Image source : MoEngage
MoEngage customers often follow the four steps shown above to engage in insights-led ways. Let’s dive into each step:
To predict the behavior of your customers, analyze your business data
The first step in the insights-led engagement funnel is also the most crucial.Leading consumer brands’ product managers and marketers use powerful analytics to gain a 360-degree view of their customers to better understand them and predict their behavior.
Here’s Rajeshwari Kanesin (Innovation Manager at U Mobile), one of Malaysia’s top Telcos, shares his thoughts on how to analyze data for user insights in a panel discussion with MoEngage
“When we first started, we looked at the RFM model in order to analyze customer behavior.The RFM model was not the best way to contextualize today’s digital experience.We have used the model at all points of the customer’s journey.We have now run hundreds of campaigns using the insights we derived em>
Personalizing the preferences and behavior of users to improve recommendations and offers
Based on the information you have gleaned by analysing customer data, personalize your user’s experience beyond hygiene.Your customers deserve a contextual, relevant, engaging experience. This starts by listening to their needs and making an effort to accommodate them.This is an essential step in your brand’s efforts to establish a reputation as a brand that meets users’ expectations.
After you’ve put in the time and effort to create a solid foundation for personalizing the user experience (building the infrastructure, setting the tools up etc. ), the results will be amazing.You will begin to see the benefits of your investment in customer engagement and a significant increase in ROI.
Engage with customers through multiple touch points
The next step in the framework for insights-led engagement is brand engagement. Brands orchestrate data-driven omnichannel users journeys, increase user reachability across multiple communication channels and optimize the performance of engagement campaigns with technology like machine learning.
Kushal Manupati (Head of Digital at Zilingo), a leading Southeast Asian eCommerce platform, made an interesting observation during the panel discussion.
The user journey is getting more complicated with all the channels available. Users also want to be reached in specific channels, and to have their own affinity for certain channels.To add value to the user we must understand the life stage of the user and the destination you want them to be in.This is the point from which all marketing decisions are made.
This is the best place to begin the crucial third step.
To combat churn, create omnichannel engagement campaigns and win back users
Brands must not only acquire new customers but also keep existing customers loyal and active. They also need to increase their CLV as much as possible to grow at breakneck speeds.This is often impossible to believe.
Marketers need to make sure that they focus on creating multi-channel, personalized campaigns to win back lost users, prevent them from leaving, and so forth.This is the final step of the insights-led engagement flywheel.
How top Asian brands use Insights-led Engagement
MoEngage is used by hundreds of brands in Southeast Asia to enhance their customer engagement strategies.This is how some brands helped to prove the value of this emerging art and science for consumers brands.
1.Mamikos boosts room rental bookings by 20% using MoEngage Analytics
Mamikos is Indonesia’s most trusted and popular room-rental app. It was founded in 2015 to provide easy, reliable, and trustworthy room rental services.Mamikos provides detailed information about Indonesian cities and offers accommodation management services.Over 2 million people have used the brand’s long-stay rental rooms.
Their inability to provide feedback on user behavior via their website and app was a major problem.They were therefore sending out generic information about available properties to their users.They wanted to change to a more personal approach to engaging users.
Mamikos’ team was able to use MoEngage to dig into funnel data to identify two stages of the user journey with huge drop-offs. These were the add to favourite’ stage and the booking’ stage.
Mamikos was able to use this information to modify its generic communication strategy to make it more relevant and personalized.Read more here
2.Blibli increases repeat purchase rates by 43% through the use of customer data
Blibli is an Indonesian e-commerce portal that offers a single-stop shopping experience.More than 20,000 products are available under 16 categories, including groceries and fashion, gadgets and home decor as well as automotive and car products.You can also get travel packages, vouchers and utility bill payments.
Blibli had micro-moments when its users made purchases or added products to their wishlist.The brand’s team could not engage the users with relevant product positioning by using other product categories.
The Blibli team decided that they would analyze active users to run campaigns using the MoEngage platform.They were eventually able to increase repeat purchases by existing users and make new purchases from new customers.Read more here
3.Luxstay Sees a 60% Increase in Engagement Rate by Segmentation and Personalization
Luxstay, an online platform for short-term rentals and a hospitality service, was established in 2016.These service providers are here to help homeowners make independent travel easier and increase their property’s value.
The company’s marketing team had a basic engagement strategy. They were using a marketing automation platform.This platform was not perfect. The brand experienced inconsistent segmentation and siloed channels. There was also no engagement.
To increase user engagement, the team devised strategies to improve behavior understanding and personal communication.Luxstay used the MoEngage platform for custom segmentation and personalized engagement. This resulted in a 5X increase of conversions and a 1.8X rise in MAUs.Read more here
4.Kredivo used MoEngage Automated flows to influence conversions by up to 40%
Kredivo allows ecommerce buyers the ability to apply for credit instantly and have it paid back over time.Kredivo merchants can offer Point of Sale financing to all buyers by using a 2-click checkout.Kredivo has grown to be one of the most popular and trusted digital payment channels for ecommerce Indonesia in less than three years.
Today’s online shoppers use at least two devices to make purchases.Kredivo was determined to stay with them every step of their journey.
Kredivo used MoEngage to implement an omnichannel engagement strategy that engaged and converted new users. This resulted in a 20% increase in push notifications’ delivery, and a 64% conversion rate when triggered emails were sent.Read more here
Engage in Insights-Led Ways
Marketers are often asked the question, “Is a new method just a fad?”.Are you merely a bandwagon expert or are there scientific principles behind the new approach?
Insights-led engagement is, fortunately for you, the former.It relies on data to drive business decisions and is therefore based on quantitative proof rather than intuition or hunch.You can learn this art as a marketer, or brand, while it is still in its infancy, and gain an advantage over your peers and competition.
Magento Training and Certification now integrated with Adobe Resources
We are making great progress in our integration with Magento and Adobe Experience Cloud, and have made some exciting new changes to Magento training and certification.
Magento Training – Fee-Based
To provide customers with a single resource for all Experience Cloud applications, we integrated all Magento fee-based training into Adobe Digital Learning Services in July.The ADLS site now contains the complete Magento course catalog for front-end and rear-end developers, system administrators and business architects.The end-to-end Magento learning experience will be elevated by ADLS’s global team, world-class processes and high-value training programs.
Get Magento Training for Free
The free Magento U training courses will move to Adobe Experience League in August. This is Adobe’s extensive library of learning content and courses.Experience League provides developers, architects, product managers, and marketers personalized paths to connect, learn, and grow their skills based on their role and experience. It is available anytime and anywhere.This new feature will give more people free access to tutorials about Magento. It also provides clear guidance as to which fee-based Magento training Adobe Digital Learning Services is best for those who require more in-depth learning.
In August, Magento customers, partners and developers were able to manage their certifications, register for Magento exams and download digital badges via the Adobe Credential Manager.Magento certified developers are able to display their professional qualifications via digital badges. This allows people to quickly verify their authenticity and learn more about their credentials.Magento Certified developers can also align to the Adobe Certified credential levels Expert, Professional, or Master. They also receive certification badges that reflect the new Adobe branding.This guide explains what the Adobe Credential Manager can do for you and how to share digital versions.
The Four P’s for Peak Season Performance: A Guide for Preparing Your Infrastructure to High Traffic
Your journey to success during peak season for your company – whether it’s the traditional holiday season or a specific industry-specific busy period – starts with making sure your digital storefront’s infrastructure is up to the task.It doesn’t matter what this annual opportunity means for your company, it is important to not waste the effort, preparation, and craft that your team has put into this success.
Adobe has provided a guide for peak-season preparation. It is called “The Four P’s Of Peak Performance” and is worth the small time investment.To ensure that you are prepared, we recommend starting this work at least three weeks before your most important dates.This guide can be useful if you are working with a partner (or systems integrator) to help you discuss their plans for preparing your site for peak season.
1.1.Predict your traffic and order volume
While wild guesses made based on intuition are fine at your local racetrack or casino, data-based planning should be your mainstay.This feature allows you to easily review four key benchmarks, or MBI. They can be used to help you predict peak season traffic that you will need to support.
*The traffic load of your site over the past six month on a daily or weekly basis *Last year’s peak season was a busy time for your site. *The percentage increase in peak season traffic last year compared to the six-month average before peak season. *Year-over-year traffic growth rates between the last year’s and this years site traffic
These data points can be used to calculate peak season’s percentage growth last year.This will give you an idea of the peak season.To validate the prediction made in the previous step, you can use the year-over year growth rate by comparing this percentage with last year’s peak seasons numbers.Talk with your team about how to resolve differences in expectations if the numbers do not agree.If the results are very different, it is a good idea to plan for the highest of the two numbers.
A second method to predict the resource requirements is to identify peak sales hours and examine the load they place on your infrastructure (such memory, CPU and disk space).These metrics can be multiplied three times (i.e., tripled) to give you a rough estimate of the peak traffic.Your site might need additional resources to meet peak demand if your resources cannot meet the tripled requirements.
Remember to consider how COVID-19 may have impacted your digital storefront, and whether you might see traffic that is significantly different from last year’s peak seasons.
This testing can reveal many deficiencies. Make sure you have a solid process to document and communicate these issues within your organization to help create a plan of action.When working with SIs or partners, make sure you share your findings with them or include them in the development of an action plan.
3.Make sure you prepare your site according to the instructions
Increase server capacity, and/or database capacities
After you have run a load test on your site and identified the areas that need more capacity, you can plan how you will meet those requirements.You might only plan for temporary increases during periods of high traffic.This might be the right time to increase your site’s load if it has been operating at a high rate of load for a long period.It is possible that this was due to COVID-19. However, it is better to plan around these rates rather than assume they are temporary. Many consumer behavior may change after this global event.
You might also consider adding Web Nodes in order to address the needs identified during load testing.
You can request temporary server increases for Magento Commerce customers who use our cloud infrastructure. Please refer to our Knowledge Base article.If you are interested in a permanent increase in memory, disk size or CPU, please reach out to your Magento Customer Support Manager (CSM).
Use a content delivery system
A content delivery network (CDN) is another way to meet peak season performance requirements that were revealed in load testing.A CDN is a way to power your cache by creating a global cache network that stores your static media files, HTML and JS Style Sheets.There are many CDN options, but Magento Commerce users have access to Fastly CDN.
Improve your caching configuration. You can also approach infrastructure issues by reducing the number hits to your server via better caching configurations.We recommend Full-Page Caching in conjunction with our Best Practices for Cache. This is a great way speed up Magento sites.
4.Be a good example of good habits
Optimize images to create a quick eCommerce site
Images are an essential part of the sales process. However, they can cause performance problems and can become a negative if not managed properly.We recommend that merchants use 72 dpi images that have been WebSafe.More information can be found in our article Resizing Product Image.
Upgrading to the most recent ece-tools Package
To take full advantage of our enhancements in deployment tooling, ensure that your cloud environment is up-to-date to ecetools.Recent releases include improvements to the local development experience, faster deployment of static content, and self-service capabilities that enable merchants to be more productive.For all the latest improvements, see the ECE-tools release notes.
Do not let deployment bring you down
Visitors should be able to shop without interruption during holiday season. However, you might need to make changes to your production environment.It is possible to set up your project to ensure that there is no downtime for customers during deployments.Zero Downtime Defolpments is one of the best tools for cloud infrastructure management.These articles will help you ensure that your customers are engaged with your live site regardless of how often it is deployed.
To avoid a costly and time-consuming environment rollback, ensure you have proper backup management.Snapshots allow you to quickly back up and restore specific environments from any location at any time. This can help save time and money in the event of an emergency.Snapshots are quick and easy to restore Magento environments because they are read-only files.Learn how to create and use Snapshots.
You can monitor your performance
It is always a good idea for you to monitor your site’s performance using well-designed monitoring tools.There are many ways to monitor site performance. Make sure you choose one that is compatible with your company.Customers of Magento Commerce who use our cloud infrastructure management system should take advantage New Relic to monitor site performance.
We are all multi-tasking, busy retailers with too many tasks and too little time. But how can we make wholesale product research and ordering more efficient?The answer is:Naturally, the Internet.The IR team decided that this topic was best addressed by going directly to the internet’s primary source for wholesale online buying and selling.Lisa Rioni (CTO of) was our host.Sumner CommunicationsTo learn more about the origins of the largest online directory for wholesale product sourcing in the country, and the reasons it is still the best resource for retailers, visit her website.
“WholesaleCentral.com” was founded in 1996.It was only a year and a half after the Internet became public. There wasn’t much on the internet at that time. But Sumner Communications, a leader in publishing for wholesale with our printed supplier directories, trade shows directories and top B2B trade magazines, knew they had to be online. We had to provide a resource to the industry. Rioni recalls.Sumner Communications realized that the internet would be a valuable tool for retailers to search and find new products. They took action.
“I researched many different business models at the time and visited a lot different websites to find out how they were being used by people. What we discovered was that Yahoo.com was the most popular and successful website of all time.“Well, we have directories and we bring buyers to each other, so we’re going to create a directory of wholesale suppliers on the internet.” That’s what I did, and that’s how it ended up.WholesaleCentral.comIt all came about.We were the first company that had a wholesale directory online.It was a huge success and it has been steadily growing ever since.We are proud to be the original wholesale directory.
In 2016, the wholesale directory site is a strong amalgamation of wholesale suppliers as well as buyer resources. It offers a detailed tradeshow calendar, updated product deals and steals, and a link to closeout vendors. But the core of the site still serves its original purpose of helping buyers find reliable wholesalers and high quality products 20 years ago.Rioni says that the site has changed over time.Over time, we’ve added many features to help buyers.We pay close attention to both the suppliers listed on the site and the buyers who use it.We keep in touch with buyers and suppliers every day and listen to their needs. This keeps the site evolving.We listen to what our buyers need to do their jobs effectively and then we incorporate those items into the site.
Rioni says that the site has changed technologically.The technology may appear transparent to buyers or may feel the exact same, but it has changed.Technology is constantly evolving behind the scenes. We have to keep up with it all, and stay on top of the latest developments. The most recent major change has been mobile.Our site is now mobile-friendly.Although it is a large project, we are making good progress.We will soon be launching expanded supplier profiles pages. This is to provide buyers with additional information so that they can make the best product selections for their stores.
WholesaleCentral.com’s number one priority is to give retail buyers the tools they need in order to source products quickly and efficiently.Rioni says that the actual buying process for a buyer on the site is simple.It’s very simple.There are two ways to search our site.Buyers can search suppliers by category. There’s a gorgeous list of suppliers listed right on our home page. Once they click on a category, all sub-categories will be displayed.Buyers can click on any category they’re interested in purchasing, with over 500 sub-categories and categories.This is the most common way buyers search the site for suppliers.You’ll want to search apparel if you are an apparel retailer. This is because it’s a B2B environment, and buyers know exactly what they want.
“For companies looking for a specific product, we offer a product search option. This allows you to search by name and is fed by all companies in the directory.Buyers can search for one product from over 1000 wholesale suppliers in one search box located on our homepage.Buyers have the option to search by category or product. It’s up to them.
In October 2002, the WholesaleCentral.com Buyers Network was launched. It was created as a result of buyers asking for additional tools from Sumner.Rioni recalls that the Buyers Network was created to offer buyers a better level of access.We ask buyers to share some information about themselves and their companies in return for helping them to buy products in the areas that they are interested in.Buyers get a variety of benefits.Buyers get a free Independent Reseller magazine subscription, and they can use the Product Locator Service which is an excellent way to locate specialized products or hard-to-find products.Buyers Network members get a great newsletter with lots of exclusive deals and promotions.
WholesaleCentral.com has been the online leader in B2B wholesale selling and buying for over 20 years. However, the site does not take its reputation or integrity lightly.Rioni states, “This is an important distinction that sets us apart from other wholesale supplier sites.”Rioni says that there are only a few companies in the world, and that no one else takes the same steps to ensure that suppliers are legitimate and trustworthy.This is why we are a trusted and high-quality website that buyers come back to time and again.”
Rioni continues to describe the company’s selection process for wholesale suppliers to be listed on the site.We are extremely careful about screening suppliers.Every company is reviewed. It’s not a one-off review.Suppliers visit our site to request to be listed. They provide a lot information about themselves. However, before we approve them, a Quality Control person checks them out.A team member will review the supplier’s website, products and contact them directly. They will then go through all of it to verify that they are true to their word.They are confirmed to be wholesale suppliers.We continue to contact them throughout the year, after they have been accepted to WholesaleCentral.
We will investigate any claim made by any buyer that contacts us about a problem or any suspicious activity.The Quality Control team tries to resolve any issues. However, if they find that a supplier has had repeated problems or has done something we do not consider trustworthy, we remove that supplier from the site.Although we are all human, WholesaleCentral.com is safe.
Rioni is clear that the company will continue to be focused on quality.We are the largest wholesale directory site. And we’re the best.Our team is first and foremost committed to providing high-quality products that deliver the best results for buyers searching for suppliers.Everything falls into place when you do this.Everything else works.Everything else will fall into place if you do your best to bring buyers and sellers together.
How to Increase Simplified Revenue Opportunities during Checkout
Is it easy for customers to complete their checkout?Are shoppers finding it difficult or simple?This is an important strategy and should not be ignored. A complicated checkout process can lead to lost sales.
UPS recently conducted a study that found 20% of shoppers abandoned their order because they were too confused by the checkout process.This statement should be taken seriously by e-retailers before they simplify the entire echeckout process.The shopping cart checkout process should strike a balance between simplicity, and the opportunity to increase average order value (AOV).
Which is your path to purchase?
Before e-retailers can calculate how to maximize their AOV, they need to consider the steps necessary to make a purchase.E-retailers that are profitable make it easy for customers buy.Customers today expect seamless shopping experiences and high expectations.Each e-retailer should strive to understand the preferences of their customers and create a path for them to purchase.
While it is easy to believe that mobile offers a faster way to buy, desktop and laptop buyers are more focused on their task.Recent Microsoft research shows that mobile shoppers are more distracted than desktop and laptop shoppers, which could result in increased cart abandonment.The UPS study also shows that desktop/laptop shoppers are more satisfied than mobile shoppers, at 84 percent.
Keep customers from wandering eyes
The e-retailer’s product range and the associated deals will determine if a customer wants to shop at the store.It is important to offer inspiring assortments.Smaller e-retailers have the opportunity to increase their chances of keeping customers in the shop and making purchases.Customers searching for products will want to get a great deal but may also be looking for products that are specific to their lifestyles, such as tech enthusiasts.For example, they are more concerned about protecting their investments and will be willing to invest in additional tech support.
How to add more value to your product
E-retailers that are profitable understand the importance of offering more than a great selection at a reasonable price.They know they must add value to customers’ lives and their purchases.This must be done so that the checkout process is not hindered but enhanced.A complicated checkout process can kill customers even if it adds the right value.
Adding value to your purchase can be as easy as bundling complementary items or services.You can get free shipping for orders below a certain amount; training sessions on products like computer hardware and technology; memberships to a group of like-minded users; technical support; and newsletters.Loyalty programs can be a great addition and have been shown to increase revenue for retailers.
Increase revenue AND trust
Customers building trust and loyalty is another way to add value.This can be achieved by offering protection plans and warranties on products at the time of purchase.Customers will feel secure knowing that their investments will be protected in the event of an unfortunate outcome.This feeling of security creates trust and loyalty with the online retailer. The added value also gives the ecommerce company the opportunity to increase AOV and generate additional revenue.
It must be simple
While increasing the AOV can be good for your bottom line, it should also make the process easy for shoppers.The right partner can enhance the product pages or make it easy to add these enhancements.Although they are technically extra steps, customers will feel like they’re getting more without having to go through a lengthy checkout process.
E-retailers with smaller stores that provide the right products and add value will be more successful than larger ones.This strategy is only possible if the checkout and shopping process are simple and efficient.These enhancements can be made to e-retailers’ web stores to increase their average order value.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has modified rules which affect how businesses can raise capital via direct equity and listings crowdfunding.
Formerly, in a direct record , a business could sell current stocks (from workers and private investors) on public stock exchanges. Unlike initial public offerings (IPOs), which market newly-issued stocks, no new shares could be issued.
Nonetheless, in December 2020 the SEC declared it would expand direct listings to permit companies to issue new shares on the New York Stock Exchange only.
The new rule is an appealing alternative to a conventional IPO because it eliminates much of the cost. In an immediate listing, a company doesn’t need to hire investment banks to underwrite the sale of stocks as in an IPO. The investment banks charge a commission per share, which generally ranges from 3 to 7 percent. They handle the IPO, market the shares to institutions, and encourage the inventory via their trading desks — all mainly with institutional investors like pension funds.
This rule is an appealing alternative to a conventional IPO because it eliminates much of the cost.
With the NYSE plan, businesses can sell stocks directly on the market in an auction, allowing more individual investors to buy shares at the initial offering price, instead of buying in the aftermarket as they do with IPOs. Nasdaq, another stock market, is also negotiating with the SEC to allow direct record increases.
“This is a game-changer for our capital markets, leveling the playing field for casual investors and supplying companies with a different path to go public in a moment when they’re seeking just this sort of invention,” NYSE President Stacey Cunningham commented in a statement.
In addition to bypassing prices, companies that follow the direct listing process may prevent the usual IPO limitations, like lockups that prevent insiders from selling their shares for a specified period, often up to six months.
The SEC decision wasn’t unanimous. The counter-argument to direct listing investments is that individual investors aren’t sophisticated and may make investment choices which result in financial harm. Moreover, an underwriter markets and promotes the new stocks, improving the chances that they’ll sell. In an immediate listing, the issuer accounts.
Nonetheless, the new direct listing rules are expected to attract tech businesses. Coinbase, the cryptocurrency market which enables users to purchase and trade decentralized tokens like Bitcoin and Ethereum, last month filed for an immediate record with the SEC.
Likewise Roblox Corporation, a video game company with an in-game buy version, changed its mind about moving forward with an IPO and is opting for an immediate listing.
NYSE restrictions still exist concerning the size of organizations that may use direct listings. These rules include, among other requirements: (I) a minimum amount of current shareholders, (ii) a $4 minimum price per share, and (iii) at least $100 million market value of common equity on the first day of this listing.
These principles would exclude many early-stage start-ups. For them, a new equity crowdfunding expansion may provide a means to raise funds.
In November 2020 the SEC amended crowdfunding rules, which the SEC calls”Legislation Crowdfunding. ” The new rules, which go into effect on March 15, allow businesses to raise $5 million each 12 months by selling securities through controlled, online crowdfunding portals. The original limitation, which received much criticism because of its small size, was $1.07 million. (The significant disclosure and reporting requirements remain in place.)
The new rules… allow companies to raise up to $5 million each 12 months…
Besides increasing the amount companies can increase, the alterations boost investment limitations. For an accredited investor (a individual who has an annual income exceeding $200,000 for the previous two decades, or $300,000 for joint income), there isn’t any longer a limitation on the amount invested in a business using a Regulation Crowdfunding offering. A man is also regarded as an accredited investor if she has a net worth exceeding $1 million, either independently or jointly with a partner.
For non-accredited investors, the investment limit will be the higher of (as opposed to”lesser of” under the present rule) existing limits based on an investor’s yearly income or net worth.
Adding a B2B company’s ecommerce website using internal systems can streamline operations and simplify customers’ buying experiences. Integrations offer substantial benefits, but they’re often tough to get right.
Among the most frequent B2B data integrations joins a provider’s ecommerce purpose to its ERP applications –“enterprise resource planning,” the main operations system, such as manufacturing, fulfillment, shipping, customer information, and accounting.
In this guide, I will review four tips to safeguard your ERP integration — or another B2B ecommerce integration — is a success.
It’s important to understand what information to include in the integration, what the origin of the data is, where it’ll be sent to, and how frequently it’ll be updated.
Here’s a list of shared data integration factors. You may decide to incorporate some of them initially and add others over time.
Online orders: Ecommerce to ERP. As transactions are placed via your ecommerce website, this integration will bring the order into your ERP system. This is the most common integration point and will let you fulfill orders better. This integration typically includes customer data from the arrangement, the particular items which were ordered, and the delivery process.
Offline orders: ERP to ecommerce. This integration enables customers to find orders they put outside of the ecommerce website. This can be left out of first integration projects, and typically falls from the nice-to-have versus must-have group. But it’s a fantastic way to build a connection with your B2B customer.
Product data: ERP to ecommerce. Merchandise data integrations can permit you to show on an ecommerce website what goods are in stock and how quickly they would ship. It can display a general price for goods, product weight, and other attribute data, such as colour and dimensions.
Client data: ERP to ecommerce. Integrating customer data may consist of contract pricing, allowing buyers to buy at their particular price. Customers might have products that aren’t readily available to the general public. They may desire to place orders through purchase order, or even on a credit hold (that can be handled via an integration).
Shipping and tracking information. The delivery date, the carrier, method, and tracking number can be incorporated to permit clients to know when to expect their purchase.
These extra items should be planned for in the integration requirements.
On occasion, companies will use performance from the ERP for ecommerce — such as calculating shipping costs and sales tax. Retrieving ERP data in real time is more process intensive, and it’s risks. It can bring about page load times from the ecommerce voucher to be slow as calls are made to the ERP server. Furthermore, if the ERP server goes , or communicating with the ERP software is disrupted, users can’t complete their purchase.
2. Map Client Registration Workflow
In the realm of B2B, a client’s registration is often crucial. Data integrations can impact the registration procedure. Prior to some integration, map out the enrollment workflow for a new client, one who hasn’t placed an order on the internet.
Consider these questions.
When a buyer comes to your ecommerce website and has never purchased online but her firm purchases offline, how can you connect this individual to her offline account? Will she be able to place an order instantly?
When a buyer comes to your website from a totally new firm — one that hasn’t ordered offline or online — what is essential to create an account? Will he be able to order instantly?
You may allow buyers to use information they understand — such as their account number and billing zip code — to connect to their offline account. Or you may take a customer service representative to approve the purchaser’s account request. Regardless, to acquire the maximum orders, make the procedure as straightforward as possible for the buyer.
3. Build a Data Migration Plan
Oftentimes, for new integrations there are first, necessary, one-time data-migration measures.
Loading product data, ensuring that all goods on the ecommerce website have a legitimate SKU that matches with the ERP;
Migrating users from a previous ecommerce site, if the integration has been completed at the exact same time for a re-platform;
Mapping existing ecommerce users to ERP accounts.
List the first data to be migrated and create a strategy for when and how it’s going to be done.
4. Plan for Failure
However well you plan, sometimes data doesn’t reach its destination properly. A well-designed integration addresses the danger of failure.
How will the ecommerce website operate if the ERP system goes down for a long period? If it does return, can the website run independently for 24 hours, then information is updated when the ERP system comes back online?
Imagine if the ERP system is up and running but, say, a delivery tracking number isn’t in the ecommerce database? How are you going to troubleshoot what went wrong? An event log may review mistakes, to monitor possible troubles. You might choose to set up alerts to email certain individuals for a certain kind of error.
With clarity around your integration requirements, the client enrollment workflow, your data migration program, and how you are going to troubleshoot and manage system downtime, you’ve got the foundational components for a successful data integration to your B2B ecommerce website.
Continuity ecommerce creates recurring revenue by means of a combination of connected devices and auto-ship functionality. It is subscriptions on steroids. In”Part 1: Approaches, Expectations,” I explained how continuity ecommerce can construct high-margin earnings flows. In this guide, I’ll concentrate on how to generate continuity programs a success.
The key to making continuity work is at the backend. Which products should you provide? How can you optimize the stick rate and decrease churn? When should you send goods, and when should you collect payments? How often if you retry a payment to minimize write-offs? How can you avoid cannibalization and substitution?
Let us begin with a story.
A heating appliance firm knew that customers needed replacement air filters for their furnaces, but its clients were only buying a tiny fraction of what they ought to be. Numerous factors were at play, including customers needing to change the filters and difficulty in locating the proper part number. A different approach was required.
For the manufacturer, selling replacement air filters proved to be a low-volume, high-margin enterprise. Increasing sales would generate earnings. By establishing a continuity program and promotion in the perfect intervals, the manufacturer was able to radically expand its sales of air filters while offering a handy consumer experience.
Additionally, the manufacturer revealed that the growth in the ability to predict demand enabled it to decrease production costs, which increased profits even further.
The fiscal impact can be spectacular. I have seen continuity programs with client involvement at 25 percent at the end of their initial 12 months. From the end of this first year, many such apps experience a rise of 25 percent in product revenue and a rise of 40 percent in total product-line profit.
…many such programs experience a rise of 25 percent in product revenue and a rise of 40 percent in total product-line profit.
Let us take a look at what it takes to achieve those outcomes.
7-step Continuity Guide
With any continuity program, begin by taking a look at your back office capabilities, particularly your visibility and control of stock.
Step 1: Describe the products. Not all products should be on continuity. Begin by identifying candidates. Normally, these are high-margin consumable items with a latent demand and a simple and consistent supply. The target is to increase inventory turns and consequently supply products more cheaply.
You can’t afford to run out of stock of a product on continuity. It can cause immediate customer cancellations. Have a clear image of stock and prioritize continuity orders over the rest of the business, even if it means making out-of-stock finds in different channels. A robust order-management capacity will make this easy by automatically allocating inventory to continuity consumers.
Step 2: Track sales and inventory. Slow-moving consumable items are another choice for continuity programs. With careful monitoring, it is possible to see where stock is rising faster than earnings. This is a traditional early warning sign. Many brands and retailers do not do so well, and it leads to inevitable markdowns.
Products wherein sales lag stock growth may benefit from temporary continuity programs. The products are also great candidates for a “`surprise and pleasure” marketing promotion, which present new products or groups to present continuity customers.
Step 3: Make it easy to purchase, change, and cancel. A continuity program ought to be simple to register, modify and cancel — with two or three taps within an app, using a chatbot, or using a simple phone call. Beyond making it simple, concentrate on preventing churn in the first place via”save the sale” type applications.
Step 4: Know churn patterns. Auto-replenishment programs can anticipate a churn issue — typically 60 percent of consumers after the third shipping and 80 percent by the sixth.
It’s critical to comprehend the client drop-off points. In my experience, they vary among products, as the optimal delivery period will be unique to each item. Machine learning can significantly help. It may determine when to automatically ship goods, expect the crucial churn points, and activate remedial actions. From the sixth turn, by way of instance, you can retain 50 percent of consumers. AI is one of the vital secrets in continuity.
Step 5: Surprise and pleasure. One of the best ways to get ahead of churn is a series of surprises to delight customers and keep them interested. By intervening before the drop-off stage, a free sample may considerably reduce churn while introducing goodwill customers to other product lines. By way of instance, a customer purchasing dog food on continuity could be given a surprise chew toy with a delivery, delighting both dog and owner and lessening the odds of cancelation (and increasing the probability of buying dog chews on continuity).
Step 6: Independent deliveries and payments. Conventional auto-replenishment programs collect payment at the point of delivery. This strengthens the cost of the program to the client, perhaps when they were not quite prepared for the next delivery. It’s not optimal and will increase churn. Separating deliveries from collections can help clients see the recurring payments as a normal household expenditure.
Step 7: Optimize collections. By billing on various days of the week and month, you can decrease continuity churn and maximize high conversion intervals, such as proximity to the weekend and payday. Experiment to find your own magic formula or use AI to do it automatically. The same applies to payment retries: How many times if you retry given every retry typically costs $1? Assessing when to collect payment and when to retry can make a massive impact on retention rates.
Experiment and Discover
Continuity, done well, can provide powerful results. But it takes effort. You might have to modify your order management system and integrate machine learning and optimization technologies. With the proper mindset and a willingness to experiment and learn, many brands and consumer-packaged-goods companies can achieve substantial gains in revenue and profit.
The True Value Company is among the world’s leading hardline wholesalers using a globally recognized brand supplying its clients in over 60 countries an expansive product set with market-customized assortments at highly competitive prices, superior product availability, innovative marketing programs and a la carte value-added solutions.
For retailers with a presence both in physical and online stores such as True Value, developing a continuum of their online-offline customer experience is vital for brand loyalty and driving sales. Marketers are constantly on the lookout for better ways to bridge the disconnect between what happens in shops and what happens on clients’ screens.
Among the very best ways to do that for today’s customers would be to utilize rich media like 360-degree pictures that mimic an in-store experience on electronic devices.
This report provides an overview of how True Value added 360-degree images for their marketing mix and improved results for their online channels, together with some insight about the structures they had in place that made their success possible.
Today’s marketers have many tools at our disposal — sometimes, it seems like too many. It’s easy to become distracted by the”next new thing” and forget about why we do what we do. At True Value, we have discovered success in part because we have been disciplined about keeping our goals in sight: send exceptional experiences to clients wherever they are searching and shopping.
We consider an experience”excellent” if it supplies a product or service that both is related to the customer’s present life and delivers on what the customer expects from our brand.
By way of instance, if a client in Michigan is surfing Facebook daily before a major snowstorm is predicted to hit, we may want to serve an advertisement of a snow shovel that has received high customer ratings.
That client might see the ad and think,”That is perfect! I need a scoop this season! And salt!” Then put an order to pick these items up in their community True Value store before the first flake falls.
Machine learning: All these techniques help us adapt our efforts based on changing weather conditions. By way of instance, 2018 saw a late spring in much of the country, which meant lower earnings in regions that typically observe a spring rush. As a result of machine learning, we could push extra content to those men and women who had been experiencing unseasonably warm temperatures and consequently had more need for gardening and outdoor products, which helped balance sales nationally.
Client data plan : As we know more about our clients — age, life stage, hobbies, etc. — we use this information to deliver content we think they will enjoy. Someone who regularly purchases equipment for pipes jobs, as an instance, won’t receive the identical content as somebody who buys gardening supplies .
Social media advertising: This helps us reach customers in a very private and intimate manner so we are able to deliver content that’s related to where they are in the consumer buy cycle.
Online retargeting and email advertising : These platforms help us remain in front of site visitors who leave without making a purchase. These efforts keep us top of mind and make it simple for customers to complete transactions as they surf the net.
When we add 360-degree photography into the mix, every one of those efforts performs better.
Improving Online Conversions with 360º Pictures
Our product assortment is vast; we carry several sizes and variations of our SKUs in addition to many well-known national brands. We all know that 44 percent of clients visit TrueValue.com before visiting their community shop, so we needed a way to supply them with as much information as possible on the internet to assist in their purchase decisions. The inclusion of 360-degree photography to our site was a critical next step.
To take that step, we worked with a firm called Snap36 to capture 360-degree pictures of products which are often browsed online, in addition to, key promotional products.
Our thesis was that, if clients could rotate and interact with a 360-degree picture of a product, they would find a better feeling of what it looked like without physically touching it. They would, in other words, have an internet experience that closely mimicked what they would experience in our shop.
And the beauty of electronic marketing is that it is possible to test this sort of thesis since it is possible to monitor the success of every effort closely.
We are encouraged by these results and have plans to expand our library of 360-degree pictures in the forthcoming quarters, such as in our wholesale perpendicular and in additional digital marketing assets for our retail clients.
Making 360º Images Work
As I mentioned previously, 360-degree images enabled us to improve the operation of our electronic marketing. The brands that stand to gain the most from an investment in 360-degree images are the ones which have an active digital advertising program and are seeking ways to enhance its performance.
To enjoy maximum ROI out of 360-degree graphics, I recommend the following:
Bringing them into an existing advertising ecosystem. Whether that is a web catalogue, online advertising, email advertising, or any combination, the infrastructure has to exist. Spinning images can not perform in a vacuum.
Selecting an image vendor that may function as a consultant and partner. Chances are, your organization has never used or had these pictures before. Pick a photography partner that not only lets you capture 360-degree pictures at scale but also offers insight into how you can use them to improve your current marketing efforts and create new ones.
Using a strategy to monitor performance. This should go for any electronic advertising activity, but it is worth mentioning anyway. Knowing precisely how 360-degree images alter your ability to sell lets you choose how and to what level to scale your investment.
As consumers spend more time online and less time in shops, retail brands will need to find ways to interpret the intimate physical buying experience into electronic formats.
What do Jerry Seinfeld, George Carlin, Rodney Dangerfield and Maitre’D POS have in common?
They have all performed in the legendary Comic Strip Live: New York’s oldest and most prestigious comedy club. And while those other legendary comedians performed only once in a while, Maitre’D has been held over for each performance since April 2013.
Since running a comedy club is no laughing matter.
Comic Strip Live serves beverages and a few basic food items, and they sell merchandise (hats, t shirts and so on ). There are two places to the bar: the club area itself and a waiting room in the pub where people wait for the club doors to open. That can be plenty of people packed into a moderate distance, and that may create chaos and confusion for servers as they attempt to manage drinks, particularly with paper and pencil, that is how it was done for ages.
Having a two-drink minimum and a lively merchandise company, that made the situation demanding at each point. Orders were taken hastily and not necessarily properly or clearly (which meant wasted liquor and wasted time). Each patron conducted a tab, which was settled at the conclusion of the show. There was just one credit card terminal–that guaranteed a continual bottleneck in the card station and impatient people waiting to depart. And, in all likelihood, in an uncontrolled environment like theirs, monitoring and tracing waste and pilferage was impossible. Ultimately, paper is a challenging issue to keep tabs on, and there were always difficulties at the end of the day monitoring sales to money, managing voids and returns, etc. And no reporting. So while the front room was getting the laughs, the rear of the home was falling on its surface.
That is why Comic Strip Live turned to Maitre’D’s pub POS, as well as our partner Manhattan POS to find the performance in order. Today, using just the center POS system, Comic Strip Live has each area of the company in check. Every beverage, hat and meal is entered into one of four Maitre’D POS stations around the bar. Truth is currently 100%, because nothing is poured, cooked or sold unless it is in Maitre’D. Each terminal has an integrated card reader so the bottlenecks to make invoices at the end of the series are gone. Other things that took additional server time–such as voids, discounts and breaks –are now handled entirely by Maitre’D. In the back office, Comic Strip Live can take advantage of all Maitre’D’s robust reporting capabilities. They could track inventory sold versus stock pumped, server productivity, drink cost, bestselling items, and much more. Next up for them is setting up the inventory system to track things from order to ingestion.
Comic Strip Live as a excellent example of the manner Maitre’D is set up by many smaller restaurants and places. It follows a special concept in an intimate place. Still, using just the core, cheap Maitre’D POS, it is as operationally efficient and well-managed as the largest restaurant chains in the world.