OPERATIONS

MinuteClinics open inside Northern California CVS stores

BY Dan Berthiaume

Woonsocket, R.I. – The first MinuteClinic walk-in medical clinics in Northern California and the Bay Area have opened inside select CVS/pharmacy stores in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties. Three MinuteClinic locations are now operating in Foster City, San Jose, and Sunnyvale CVS/pharmacy stores.

Four additional clinics will begin to treat patients in November in Burlingame, Campbell, Mountain View and Santa Clara. There are 35 MinuteClinic locations elsewhere in California spanning from the San Fernando Valley to San Diego. MinuteClinic’s entry into Northern California is part of the company’s national expansion plan to open 150 clinics nationwide in 2013.

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OPERATIONS

Aptaris names VP technology

BY Dan Berthiaume

Tampa, Fla. – Marketing enterprise management systems provider Aptaris has named Bill Morrell as VP technology. Morrell previously held IT executive positions at companies including BabyAge.com and Destination Maternity, as well as consulting roles with clients including Cadbury Adams, Nascar and DME.

“Bill is a technology strategist who understands the tremendous pressure and deadlines retailers face daily. He creates solutions that deliver efficiency and are keenly focused on making the retail merchandising and marketing process more simplified,” said Tom O’Reilly, CEO of Aptaris. “From optimizing vendor funding, campaign and deal management to building collaboration tools, Bill will be a solid addition to the Aptaris leadership team.”

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Survey: Top retailer sites too slow — and getting slower

BY Marianne Wilson

Mahwah, N.J. — The websites for the top 500 U.S. retailers are still too slow and continue to get slower – pages have slowed down 14% since summer 2013, and are 16% slower than fall 2012, according to a study by Radware.

Radware’s quarterly “State of the Union” report measures and tracks the performance and page composition of the top 500 U.S. retail websites (as ranked by analytics firm Alexa.com) over a two-day period with the purpose of gaining ongoing visibility into the real-world performance of leading Ecommerce sites.

Key findings from the “State of the Union: Ecommerce Page Speed & Web Performance, Fall 2013” include:

  • The trend toward bigger, slower pages continues. The median page took 8.56 seconds to load for first-time visitors, representing a 14% slowdown over the median of 7.48 seconds recorded three months ago (summer 2013).
  • The median page takes 5.3 seconds to become interactive. Sites have experienced a slowdown of 8% since summer 2013, when the median time to interact (TTI) was 4.9 seconds. Ideally, pages should be interactive in 3 seconds or less. (TTI is the point at which a page displays its primary interactive content (e.g., feature banners with functional call-to-action buttons.)
  • Three common design practices are failing users. Most sites made at least one of three critical mistakes in the design and presentation of their feature content: loading feature banners last; placing a call-to-action at the bottom of feature banners; and/or not implementing a call-to-action at all.
  • The adoption of performance best practices is inconsistent, even among leading sites. Among the top 100 sites, adoption of some best practices is nearing the saturation point, whereas others remain neglected.
  • Browser vendors are not keeping pace with page demands. Across all three major browsers, performance is trending downward as browser vendors struggle to keep pace with the demands of today’s large, complex, dynamic web pages.

“In just the last few years, web page speed has migrated from the fringe to center stage, emerging as not just a technology trend, but a hot-button business issue,” said Tammy Everts, web performance evangelist, Radware. “Numerous studies have found an irrefutable connection between load times and key performance indicators, such as conversion rates and revenue increases. Site owners need to understand that optimizing performance is much more nuanced than just pushing out faster pages to customers: It’s about understanding what users want from every page of your site, then fine-tuning those pages to ensure that critical content loads first instead of last. A site owner who neglects core-performance best practices is missing out on significant opportunities to make relatively easy performance gains.”

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