News

Sleepy’s taps Demandware cloud commerce platform

BY Marianne Wilson

Burlington, Mass. — Sleepy’s, one of the nation’s leading mattress retailers, has deployed a cloud commerce platform as the backbone of its digital operations. The company has launched new web and mobile commerce sites new web and mobile commerce sites on the Demandware platform. Sleepy’s switched from an on-premise platform to Demandware’s cloud solution as part of a strategic move to advance its omni-channel initiatives and provide consumers with consistent experiences across all channels, including web, mobile and the physical store.

Sleepy’s abandoned its legacy on-premise platform because the cost of ownership had become a barrier to innovation. The retailer needed to continually upgrade hardware to keep up with its growth; software upgrades were laborious and cost-prohibitive; and in-house control was lacking.

“We made the decision to move to a cloud platform because we needed a more agile solution for our growing business,” said Christopher Cucuzza, VP of technology for Sleepy’s, which has more than 1,000 locations. “Although we are a traditional brick-and-mortar retailer, we recognize that consumers are increasingly connected and that we need to evolve to meet the needs of our customers. With our on-premise platform, we just couldn’t move fast enough. Demandware is a much more flexible solution that gives us full merchandising control along with smarter economics.”

Sleepy’s turned to Demandware’s cloud solution because it provides a better model to support the company’s growth strategy and enables the speed, agility and innovation necessary to keep pace with continually evolving consumer demands. With the solution, Sleepy’s now has a flexible and scalable platform to support its holiday intensive business, without the burden and cost of infrastructure management.

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OPERATIONS

Clark’s Americas steps up online engagement

BY Dan Berthiaume

Newton, Mass. – Clark’s Americas Inc., a division of the global shoe brand with more than 300 stores in the U.S., is deploying the Yottaa Engagement Cloud to optimize user engagement and business performance on its U.S. e-commerce site. In fall 2013, the e-commerce team at the Americas division of Clarks sought a solution that could help scale and provide a consistent, engaging Web experience throughout the busy holiday shopping season and beyond.

The Clarks Americas team also wanted to reduce the time and resources necessary to maintain and improve its U.S. e-commerce site, while still hitting goals for increasing conversions, order value, and revenue. After deploying Yottaa Engagement Cloud, Clarks’ U.S. website has already shown improvement in key engagement metrics. Yottaa’s proprietary technology enables faster image rendering and prioritized content sequencing based on user context. As a result, Clarks Americas has seen a decrease in bounce rates and increase in pages per visit and visit duration, which have had an impact on conversion rates and order size.

The Yottaa Engagement Cloud is a SaaS platform that monitors and optimizes user engagement to increase conversions and revenue across mobile and web sites. Yottaa’s proprietary context intelligence technology senses a user’s location, browser, device, Internet connectivity, and in-page interaction to sequence application content delivery and display. The anticipated result is enhanced performance and a more dynamic, personalized level of engagement.

“We wanted find a solution we could continue to leverage after the holidays for optimization and scale on a permanent basis,” said Rick Almeida, director of e-commerce at Clarks Americas.

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FINANCE

Five Below Q4 tops estimates; 62 stores planned for current year

BY Marianne Wilson

Philadelphia — Five Below on Tuesday reported better-than-expected results for its fiscal fourth quarter, ended Feb.1. The tween/teen retailer also said it is on track to open 62 stores in 2014

The company posted net profits of $24.8 million, slightly higher than estimates of $24.6 million, up from $19.2 million in the year-ago period.

Sales jumped 22.1% to $212 million, beating analysts’ expectations for $207.78 million in sales. Same-store sales increased by 0.3%.

"Despite the adverse weather impact during the most important shopping weeks of the year, we are pleased to have ended the fourth quarter with improving trends," said Five Below CEO Thomas Vellios.

The company ended the quarter with 304 stores in 19 states, an increase of 25% from the year ago period.

Vellios sounded a positive note about 2014.

“Our new stores continue to generate strong performance and returns on investment. We have 62 openings planned this year across new markets like Houston and the state of Tennessee, as well as existing markets that allow for densification opportunities. We are focused on building a solid infrastructure with our investments in people, technology and distribution. This will position our company to execute at the highest levels while solidifying our foundation for the substantial growth that lies ahead.”

For the full fiscal year, Five Below’s net sales increased by 27.8% to $535.4 million from $418.8 million in fiscal 2012, which consisted of 53 weeks. Same-store sales increased by 4.0% on a 52-week basis.

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