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Cabela’s launches new site on Fry’s platform

BY CSA STAFF

Ann Arbor, Mich. — Fry, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Micros Systems, announced that Cabela’s has launched its newly designed website on Fry’s Open Commerce Platform.

Fry built and designed the new cabelas.com on its e-commerce framework, Open Commerce PlatformTM (OCP). The site’s new features include a creative redesign, an integrated kiosk, multi-site capability, a new store locator, in-page zoom and swatching, guided navigation, an enhanced My Account section and product comparison capabilities. In addition, OCP’s content management system allows Cabela’s to target content to consumers, enhancing the online shopping experience.

“Fry’s OCP gives us the flexibility and robustness we need in order to grow our online business," said Mark Thompson, Cabela’s senior director of e-commerce. “The new platform, along with the new creative design and customer experience features, combines to offer a world-class shopping experience to every customer.”

The new site allows Cabela’s to communicate with customers using OCP’s Experience Manager to deliver targeted content and special offers with user-specific merchandising rules.

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Real estate recovery ongoing

BY CSA STAFF

New York City — The real estate recovery is well under way, though not without some bumps, workout specialist Dennis P. Yeskey recently told a gathering of more 100 real estate professionals at the "Industry Spotlight: Finance — Global Trends in the 2011 Real Estate Capital Markets" discussion sponsored by NYCREW, the New York area chapter of the Commercial Real Estate Women network.

Capital is returning to the market and with few foreclosures, workouts will increase, said Yeskey, managing director of New York City-based global consulting firm AlixPartners LLP, at the evening event held at the offices of law firm Crowell & Moring LLP.

"The last two years have been unbelievably strange," Yeskey began, adding that this most recent recession was the fifth downturn he’d witnessed, and "a crisis that was a non-crisis. Unlike the other four, we [in real estate] weren’t the root cause of the problem."

Money is returning to the market faster than in previous recoveries, though it could take four years for employment figures to bounce back to pre-recession levels.

"Every recovery since World War II has taken longer to recover lost jobs," Yeskey noted. "It’s a normal function of a mature recovery."

New York will remain a major focus for the new wave of foreign investors, who perceive it as more affordable than other major cities around the world.

"I’ve never seen foreign interest in the United States greater," Yeskey said.

Apartments and hotels are seen as good investments, and infill retail remains positive, Yeskey said to the enthusiastic audience. The speech was his sixth annual industry preview for NYCREW.

The session was NYCREW’s first event of 2011 and kicks off a yearlong celebration of its 10th anniversary.

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Fresh & Easy bag design winner revealed

BY CSA STAFF

EL SEGUNDO, Calif.— Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market announced that it has debuted the winning design from its first-ever Design-A-Bag contest in its stores this week. The new reusable bag retails for only 79 cents and has already been a big hit with customers with thousands already sold. The bag’s creative design was hand-drawn by Los Angeles resident Josephine Close, who received a year’s worth of free groceries for winning the contest.

According to the company, the Design-A-Bag contest generated more than 1,300 submissions from customers and 24,000 votes by "friends of fresh&easy" – customers who have signed up to receive the latest news about the company along with exclusive offers at www.freshandeasy.com/friends.

"We set out to design a desirable and affordable bag people actually want to use and re-use, and we turned to our customers for inspiration," said Roberto Munoz, Fresh & Easy director of neighborhood affairs. "Based on sales of the bag already, we know customers like the design and the price point. We hope this new bag will continue to encourage customers to use fewer single-use bags in exchange for reusable options."

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