STORE SPACES

Burger King wins Energy Efficiency Excellence Award

BY CSA STAFF

Miami Burger King Corp. was awarded the 2010 Energy Efficiency Excellence Award in the “Restaurant Chain” category by Southern California Gas Co. (SoCal Gas Co.).

The award recognized BKC as an industry leader for its innovation and commitment to develop energy-efficient kitchen equipment. Among the company’s innovations is the Duke Flexible Batch Broiler, which reduces energy costs.

“Our new revolutionary broiler not only reduces operational and energy costs but it expands cooking flexibility and facilitates a broader menu selection for our restaurants,” said John Reckert, senior VP, global operations research and development for BKC.

Eighty Burger King locations across Southern California have installed the energy-efficient broilers, which amounted to an estimated savings of $41,300 per year in natural gas costs. Additionally, gas consumption and related costs have been reduced by 52% compared with previous broilers, while the consumption and cost of electricity has been reduced by 90%.

All Burger King restaurants in North America have installed the new broiler and the broiler’s rollout to international markets is expected to be completed over the course of 2012.

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Bluefly.com invests in customer satisfaction

BY CSA STAFF

Retailers understand now, more than ever, if an e-commerce site experiences technical problems, online shoppers could easily make a purchase elsewhere. In response, companies are upping their game to detect and quickly fix web issues to keep shoppers satisfied and also bring in sales.

For example, online retailer New York City-based Bluefly.com once had an undetected outage on its site for 10 hours where customers could not add items to their shopping carts. The problem caused a big loss in revenue.

“We had to ensure that something like that would never happen again,” said Matt Raines, VP technology for Bluefly. “Since we are an online-only business, if our site is experiencing a technical problem and customers cannot add to cart or checkout — we might as well have a “closed for business’ message on our homepage.”

As a result, Bluefly sought a customer experience management solution to prevent issues such as this from occurring.

“It doesn’t matter if people can still browse products,” Raines said. “If the most critical part of our site is down and the customer cannot transact, it makes no difference if every other part of the site is working. That is what led us to Tealeaf.”

Bluefly turned to San Francisco-based Tealeaf’s customer experience management platform in 2006 and the solution was up and running within a week. Tealeaf provides real-time customer behavior analysis for web businesses focused on optimizing the online channel. It also measures site experience in real-time by identifying patterns of behavior that signify customer struggle and helps businesses fix them fast.

Soon after implementation, the company detected an issue with its Bill Me Later application page. However, after it was fixed, Bluefly experienced a 43% increase in purchases using Bill Me Later.

In another instance, the merchant was alerted to an issue with its international guest checkout workflow that was preventing customers from checking out.

“Once we identified the problem and isolated the issue, we increased gross revenue by 10% in the 30 days following, which on an annualized basis is about $1.1 million in additional sales,” Raines explained.

Overall, the solution allowed the company to focus on the issues that were most pervasive and affected the largest number of customers.

Tealeaf recently released Tealeaf 8 in April with updated capabilities to optimize websites. Moving forward with the latest edition of the solution, Bluefly is developing a way to alert its customer service team when a shopper fails to checkout so they can contact them as soon as the customer’s session ends.

“We are also researching how we can leverage Tealeaf to improve our fraud detection capabilities,” Raines added.

In addition to making sure the site runs smoothly, Bluefly is also reaching out to customers in fun and innovative ways to keep them engaged with the brand. The company has been blogging for a few years and is now tweeting on a regular basis. It also maintains a Facebook page.

“Like many retailers, we are experimenting with all different forms of social networking to reach our customer base where they are online and empower them to share their experiences with their friends,” Raines said. “We hope to do more of this in the future as well.”

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Barilla enlists chef Krieger to promote whole grain pasta

BY CSA STAFF

CHICAGO Barilla announced that it has enlisted celebrity chef Ellie Krieger to help it promote its whole grain pasta line.

“To get people to eat well, don’t say a word about health, rather just cook fantastic food for them,” said Ellie Krieger.  “For example, Barilla Whole Grain pasta makes healthy eating a culinary experience; it is delicious while providing all the health benefits of whole grains.”

 

In addition, Barilla has made exclusive recipes from Krieger available online at www.TryBarillaWholeGrain.com.

 

To further promote its whole grain pasta, Barilla announced that, through Oct. 31, customers who purchase a box of Barilla Whole Grain and are not satisfied by the product can receive a free box of their favorite regular Barilla pasta by submitting a completed redemption form found on the promotion website, original store receipt and UPC symbol. 

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