TECHNOLOGY

Amazon Key expands nationwide—and gets more locks

BY Marianne Wilson

Amazon’s smart home program is expanding.

Amazon is rolling out some of the main features of its “smart entry” program, Amazon Key, to Prime members nationwide, including keyless entry, remote lock and unlock and guest access. But the program’s primary feature — in-home deliveries — will continue to be available only to members in 37 select cities and surrounding areas. (The delivery feature uses a smart lock to allow Amazon to make deliveries inside a customer’s front door.)

Amazon has also added a new feature to Amazon Key: entry and exit video clips that allow customers to view motion video clips of a person entering or leaving their home when the door is locked or unlocked. It also has expanded the selection of smart locks customers can choose, adding five new compatible locks for a total of eight.

“Customers have told us that they love how easy it is to use Amazon Key for keyless entry and door monitoring from anywhere with the Amazon Key App,” said Rohit Shrivastava, general manager, Amazon Key. “It’s a great service for busy families; you no longer have to worry about giving keys to service providers like house cleaners, instead you can give them their own code right from your Amazon Key App.”

In addition to in-home delivery, Amazon Key can be used for other purposes, the company pointed out. Instead of having to leave a physical key under a door mat, customers can lock and unlock their door from anywhere using the Amazon Key App with the touch of a button. Customers also have the added security of providing codes to guests for home access, managing their guest list, and assigning when and for how long a guest has access.

Amazon Key customers can also use their app to view a live stream of their door anytime, use two-way audio, and receive notifications when their door is locked or unlocked.

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Site-wide conversion up at Hickory Farms after redesign

BY Marianne Wilson

A redesign of its website has yielded significant benefits for Hickory Farms.

The specialty food-gifting retailer worked with Lyons Consulting Group, part of the Capgemini Group, to re-design the user experience for Hickory Farms’ e-commerce site, built on Salesforce’s Commerce Cloud. Lyons Consulting also implemented Salesforce Marketing Cloud and integrated it with the commerce platform. Hickory Farms’ new online shopping experience resulted in a 10% year-over-year increase in site-wide conversion in year one.

Hickory Farms wanted to improve the quality of its customer data and create a more agile process for developing and deploying email campaigns. Lyons Consulting worked with the brand to define its business environment, and made recommendations for leveraging data in Marketing Cloud and the types of consumer journeys that should be implemented. Lyons then implemented Marketing Cloud, integrating it with Commerce Cloud and the company’s CRM.

The integration between Commerce Cloud and Marketing Cloud enables Hickory Farms to successfully trigger consumer journeys and automated email sends based on previous customer behavior, and report on critical transactional data. Email inbox placement on the new marketing platform is at 94%, almost 10% above industry standard, according to Lyons Consulting.

“With its vast knowledge of Commerce Cloud and its retail and marketing expertise, LYONSCG [Lyons Consulting] was able to approach this project from both a technology and a marketing perspective, and this made all the difference,” said Judy Ransford, chief marketing officer at Hickory Farms.

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Amazon reportedly may make bid for Indian e-commerce giant

BY CSA Staff

Amazon may end up doing battle with Walmart over India’s e-commerce giant.

The online giant may make an offer to buy Flipkart, according to a report by India’s livemint.com. Flipkart and Walmart are already in advanced discussions for the U.S. discounter to buy a 55% stake in Flipkart. Amazon, however, has held its own exploratory discussions to buy the company, the report said.

Launched in 2007, Flipkart has, so far, raised more than $6 billion. Apart from its namesake platform, Flipkart owns fashion businesses Myntra and Jabong, eBay India and mobile payments firm PhonePe, the mint reported.

Click here to read more.

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