TECHNOLOGY

QVC increases its ‘Beauty IQ’

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

QVC Group knows the value of creating experiences — especially across its beauty category.

QVC has built its reputation on offering an ever-changing collection of brands and merchandise across the beauty, home, fashion, electronics and jewelry categories. However, it has to pull out the stops to move beyond the status of an “omnichannel retailer” and into a unified, “experiential retailer.”

“We don’t have online-, mobile- or television-centric customers,” Todd Sprinkle, chief digital officer, QVC Group, said during “Technology and the business: An essential partnership,” a session during the National Retail Federation’s “Big Show” in New York. “Our customer is a ‘QVC customer,’ and she shops across all channels — e-commerce, mobile and social.”

However, this task is not always easy in every category. One of QVC’s biggest challenges was creating a unified experience across its beauty category. Since the segment is a fragmented space, it is often difficult for customers to navigate and engage with featured brands.

To solve the issue, the company’s technology and business teams joined forces to launch a new platform called Beauty IQ. Described as the company’s first-ever multichannel platform dedicated to beauty, customers now have a destination that drives an interactive shopping experience across the beauty category.

The platform curates all beauty content in one place, offers beauty tips shared via social media influencers, and features live video streaming through Facebook Live, as a means of keeping the experience interactive.

“With access to customer comments during live feeds, we can respond in real-time, and use the information as a springboard to change content or merchandise throughout the day to meet the shoppers’ needs,” Mary Campbell, QVC Group’s chief interactive experience officer, said at NRF.

In addition to being a robust engagement tool, Beauty IQ launched within 90 days. This rapid development illustrates how QVC is striving to “raise the bar on innovation,” as well as create more relevant shopping experiences, according to Sprinkle.

“We are constantly looking at what our customers are doing and how they interact with us, then we use this information to transform our business in a way that is relevant to our shopping base,” he added. “It is our teams’ efforts that are transforming us beyond an omnichannel retailer and into an experiential retailer.”

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GameStop steps up its store communications, operational execution

BY Marianne Wilson

GameStop has deployed an intuitive, cloud solution designed specifically for retail to effectively manage and execute store tasks and communications.

GameStop has implemented Opterus’ Store Ops-Center solution across its more than 4,000 U.S. store locations. The retailer is also looking into expanding use of the solution to its stores in Canada, Australia and potentially Europe.

Previously, GameStop used a simple, plain text POS email solution in combination with a Microsoft SharePoint site. But the retailer wanted a nimbler solution that could provide more enhanced store communications, task management, and content including visual UI, reporting and metrics. After reviewing available options, GameStop selected the Opterus tool.

Since the initial implementation of Store Ops-Center in 2017, GameStop has recognized seen a number of benefits. The licensing model from Opterus has enabled the retailer with an individual account model that can flex with the business growth without massive cost swings typically experienced in the retail segment. Also, the communication lines between headquarters and its stores have become extremely targeted to ensure messages reach each impacted individual on our front line of sales.

Additional benefits of the solution include:

• Reduced time of task management: Sending tasks to all of its stores has been reduced from an effort that previously took hours, down to mere minutes.

• Enhanced reporting: GameStop now has the ability to more easily and quickly report on nationwide progress to system and content administrators, without the need to involve the business intelligence team.

• Improved task execution oversite: GameStop’s field managers can more quickly attend to store tasks, removing the previously used “post-it” approach for reminders with the Opterus option for traceable, actionable items.

“The benefits we have experienced since working with Opterus have stretched beyond these metrics to a more qualitative offering, including a leadership team that is accessible, transparent and responsive, a rare find with today’s technology vendors,” said Mark Quall, senior director store process and workforce management, GameStop. “What’s more, Opterus’ roadmap reflects solutions that directly address customer pain points. We were amazed by the ability of Opterus to incorporate a key new feature needed by GameStop into their existing roadmap at very little cost and time.”

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Fast-growing outdoor brand launches new digital store in the cloud

BY Marianne Wilson

Yeti has launched a new unified shopping experience.

The Austin, Texas-based brand, best known for its premium coolers, has unified commerce with sales, service and marketing on Salesforce, in partnership with OSF Commerce, to drive more personalized, omnichannel customer journeys. Central to Yeti’s success has been its ability to consistently deliver highly personalized customer experiences — even as it has expanded to millions of consumers and thousands of retailers.

As the company has experienced rapid growth, it has been able to manage its B2C and B2B customer relationships at scale using Salesforce Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Marketing Cloud and Community Cloud. Now, Yeti is managing the entire customer lifecycle on Salesforce. The company engaged OSF Commerce to implement OSF UnifyCOMMERCE, connecting Commerce Cloud and Service Cloud to provide customers with exceptional customer service and seamless digital shopping experiences, on any device.

Through Commerce Cloud and Salesforce Einstein artificial intelligence, Yeti shoppers will now receive unique content, campaigns, offers and recommendations based on information such as past purchases, geographic regions and even their favorite outdoor adventures. Additionally, customers can now design their own custom orders, mix and match drinkware and more — all without having to leave Yeti’s site.

“Yeti’s core values include being authentic, innovating with our brands and products, being responsive and going the extra mile,” said Matt Reintjes, CEO, Yeti. “Salesforce enables us to deliver on those values and grow our business knowing that we’re always ready for the next adventure. We’re thrilled to launch our new digital store on Commerce Cloud and continue reinventing how we engage with our customers.”

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