TECHNOLOGY

Specialty auto parts chain races for omnichannel position

BY CSA STAFF

As a retailer of automotive aftermarket parts, tools, supplies, equipment, and accessories, O’Reilly Automotive Inc. helps its shoppers customize and tailor their vehicles to individual preferences.

So when the Springfield, Missouri-based chain decided to update its omnichannel customer experience, it realized a highly customizable solution would be needed. O’Reilly has selected the e-commerce platform from Broadleaf Commerce to support seamless marketing and merchandising across its mobile and Web channels, as well as its 4,571 stores in 44 states.

Due to its intricate and substantial customization needs, O’Reilly closely evaluated Broadleaf to determine the vendor’s ability to handle catalog, integration, and scalability needs.

The Broadleaf framework is designed for customization, With heightened merchandising and marketing functionalities, the platform will allow O’Reilly to provide customers with a uniform and optimized online and mobile experience, including enhanced on-site search mechanisms and tailored content delivery.

“Within a few weeks, Broadleaf proved their ability to handle our complex challenges, including the ability to scale to millions of SKUs and handle our store integration requirements,” said Jeff Lauro, senior VP of information systems at O’Reilly. “With the move to Broadleaf, we will be able to modernize the overall experience for our customers.”

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TECHNOLOGY

Target offering more deals on its Cartwheel app

BY Marianne Wilson

Target announced it is testing an expansion of its Cartwheel app, which launched in 2013. The retailer reported that the app has saved users, in total, $475 million (and counting) to date.

The new feature expands the app to allow for digital coupons from manufacturers that offer a dollar amount discount (rather than a percentage discount).

The service is made possible through a partnership with Quotient (formerly Coupons.com), a third-party provider of digital coupons, according to a report by TechCrunch.

Click here to read more.

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Walgreens issues corporate ‘Red Nose’ challenge as exclusive retail partner of 2nd Red Nose Day

BY Michael Johnsen

Walgreens on Monday announced its returns as the exclusive retail partner of the second annual Red Nose Day, helping raise funds to fight kids' poverty. The campaign's iconic Red Noses – which people wear in support of the official Red Nose Day on Thursday, May 26 – returned to store shelves at Walgreens and Duane Reade locations nationwide this morning, officially kick starting the nine-week charitable campaign.

Following the sell-out success of last year's inaugural Red Nose Day, Walgreens is going beyond the nose in 2016 and raising funds through the sale of new Red Flair merchandise, also available nationwide starting today. From red hats and springy novelty headbands to oversized sequin bowties and Red Noses for cars (to name a few), Walgreens is making it even easier for Americans to "Get Seriously Silly" in support of a great cause.

"Helping people live happy and healthy lives is our passion at Walgreens, and participating in Red Nose Day lets us do just that for those who need it most: kids living in poverty in the U.S. and abroad," stated Alex Gourlay, president of Walgreens. "Topping last year's success is a challenge we're ready for. We have more Red Noses, new Red Flair and several other fun ways for everyone in the Walgreens family – from our valued customers and vendor partners to our passionate team members – to get involved in this powerful campaign."

Between now and the official Red Nose Day in May, Walgreens hopes to sell significantly more Red Noses than the 5 million it sold last year. To help meet its goal, Red Noses and Red Flair hit Walgreens shelves two weeks earlier this year, giving Americans even more time to "Get Seriously Silly" in support of a great cause.

Beginning March 28 and continuing through June 4, Walgreens and Duane Reade locations nationwide will sell Red Noses for $1 each and Red Flair items for between $1-$5.99. Proceeds from Red Nose and Red Flair purchases benefit the Red Nose Day Fund, which supports charities with domestic and international reach aimed at fighting childhood poverty, including Boys & Girls Clubs of America; charity:water; Children's Health Fund; Covenant House; Feeding America; Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance; National Council of La Raza; National Urban League; Oxfam America; Save the Children; and The Global Fund.

Beyond purchasing Red Noses and Red Flair for themselves, Americans can further support the cause by purchasing Red Noses and Red Flair products for their schools or workplaces, or organize fundraisers in their community. Cash donations can also be made at any Walgreens location.

Walgreens commemorated the return of the laughs and Red Nose Day fun with the help of actor and comedian Ravi Patel (Grandfathered, Masters of None), who helped deliver the first batch of Red Noses and Red Flair to Walgreens shelves in Chicago, the retailer's hometown. Accompanied by Walgreens team members, Patel arrived at Walgreens flagship store in a Red Nose Day-adorned armored truck. With security in place, a briefcase full of Red Noses and Red Flair handcuffed to his arm and a store full of unsuspecting shoppers, Patel successfully delivered the Red Nose Day fun to Walgreens.

Together with Walgreens, Patel will continue the fun online by inviting Americans to "Get Seriously Silly" on social media with weekly #RedNose challenges. Starting today and continuing every Monday leading up to Red Nose Day, Patel will accept the weekly #RedNose challenge from Walgreens with a silly video and task Americans to join in. The challenges include "Share your four-legged friend's #RedNose look," "Share your #RedNose Mom & Me Flair selfie," and "Share your #RedNose landmark photo," among others. People can share their silliest pictures and videos answering the challenge on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #RedNose.

Weekly #RedNose challenge videos will be featured as part of a new Walgreens "50 States, 50 Stories" video series to live on Walgreens.com/RedNoseDay. In the series, Walgreens takes Red Nose Day on the road in search of powerful stories showing people both supporting and benefitting from Red Nose Day. The uplifting, fun-filled stories will showcase real people's charitable Red Nose Day efforts in action across the country.

Walgreens "nose" consumers aren't the only ones who know how to have fun for a great cause. Later this week, Walgreens executives will issue a Corporate Challenge to colleagues at other companies encouraging them to share funny videos and show America their silly sides. In the coming weeks Walgreens Facebook page will show just how silly corporate America can get to help fight kids' poverty around the world.

In the U.K., Red Nose Day has raised more than $1 billion since it launched over 25 years ago and is an inspiring cultural phenomenon that unites people from all walks of life in the interest of saving and changing lives. The inaugural Red Nose Day event in the U.S. took place last May and raised more than $23 million to help kids in need in America and abroad.

This year, Red Nose Day's nine-week campaign will culminate in a live, two-hour broadcast on NBC airing on May 26 (9-11 p.m. ET). The Red Nose Day Special will feature popular comedians, top musicians and Hollywood stars in an engaging mix of comedy, live musical performances and short, compelling films shedding light on the cause.

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