TECHNOLOGY

Ulta makes beauty personal

BY Dan Berthiaume

Ulta Beauty is enhancing its loyalty program with cloud-based data management.

Offering more than 500 brands and 25,000 products in their stores online, the retailer decided to leverage the data from its “Ultamate Rewards” loyalty program, which has more than 30 million members, to create and offer more unique and personalized customer experiences. The retailer generates loyalty data through sales, transactions, product reviews, and social media engagement, and sought assistance in organizing and analyzing data to transform it into insights.

After considering a number of cloud providers, Ulta decided to expand an existing partnership with Google Cloud. Ulta is deploying Google Cloud tools including BigQuery to analyze data and generate dynamic content, personalized product recommendations, and event-based messages, as well as cloud storage and a cloud-based compute engine to scale with customer demand and migrate existing applications. Ulta is also utilizing Google Cloud Anthos to build a hybrid cloud foundation.

“Google Cloud listened to our needs and worked in tandem with our engineering team to address our challenges,” said Michelle Pacynski, VP of digital innovation at Ulta Beauty. “The ease of working with the Google Cloud team and their breadth of experience made the decision a no-brainer, laying the foundation for a great partnership.”

Since partnering with Google Cloud, Ulta Beauty has enabled increased engagement with customers in store and online. The retailer has also developed new tools and capabilities, including a new virtual beauty advisor tool to deliver tailored recommendations and help shoppers choose the right products, and a customer conversation platform.

“It’s been a really efficient process so far due in part to the ease of working with the Google team,” said Michelle Pacynski, VP of digital innovation at Ulta Beauty. “They’re experienced, approachable, and their can-do style makes for a great partnership. They listened to our needs and worked in tandem with our engineering team, figuring things out, and getting it done.”

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