December 30, 2013

New Year's Resolutions, or Predictions, or Whatever

I know, you read those prediction articles. Wild stuff. "In 2014, more commerce will be done on Twitter than via email marketing". Nobody is held accountable - folks get page views, readers have fun, authors have fun, your sales remain flat.

Do you understand just how important merchandise is to your business?

Besides you, I'm not certain anybody else gets it. 

We're optimizing large green buttons instead of small turquoise buttons, 40% off plus free shipping instead of 30% off plus free two-day shipping, and making sure creative looks identical across all channels so that we can achieve omnichannel excellence. When is the last time a customer told you that they bought from you instead of Amazon because your creative looked the same on a phone as on a laptop? Be honest.

Think about this. Merchandise, based on who you ask, counts for anywhere between 60% and 75% of the success of a business (about 70% is the average, when you ask folks), with marketing at about 20%, and creative at about 10%.

And yet, all anybody talks about is how to get an extra 5% out of the 20% that marketing is responsible for (hint - 5% of 20% is 1%). Meanwhile, getting an additional 5% out of merchandising strategy is worth 3.5% to the business.

Where should you spend your time?

Where does everybody else spend their time?

Make a resolution for 2014 - resolve to spend the "right" amount of staff time on Merchandise strategy. I'll predict that your business has a better chance of success if the focus is on merchandising strategy.