February 28, 2007

Positive News: Multichannel Marketer Innovation

I'm going to start each month with good stories in the world of multichannel retailing. The good news could be about people, marketing activities, or strategies.

Here's a few things I noticed this evening on various multichannel marketer websites.

Ann Taylor has a nice "Trends" landing page. What I like is that Ann Taylor has a point of view about their merchandise. Ann Taylor competes in a very challenging market, with numerous direct competitors, and pressure from the high-end and low-end of the market. I like that they are trying to differentiate themselves from their competition.

L.L. Bean's homepage prominently features catalog requests and e-mail signup above the fold. When you have the type of traffic that L.L. Bean has, it is important to try to build a relationship with visitors. Bean is not shy about encouraging the random visitor to engage.

Visit the homepage of Urban Outfitters. Check out the upper right hand corner of the screen. If you don't have anything in your shopping cart, Urban Outfitters scribbles out the View Basket tab, circles the word "empty" on your shopping cart, and points an arrow to the cart. I visited the homepage, and noticed this immediately. Clever! Move your mouse along the links across the top of the page, and see what happens.

Gymboree has a survey on the homepage. Using the phrase "We Listen", they offer you the opportunity to answer four questions about what you think about their Easter line of merchandise. It would be fun to segment those who fill out the survey, and understand if the commenters are high-value customers, and then link that data to actual visitation, shopping cart, and purchase metrics.

At the top of Lane Bryant's homepage, you see two flags. If you are a Canadian visitor, you can click your flag, in order to see merchandise denominated in Canadian currency. It's always good to make your site friendly to our friends living north of the border.

Patagonia has the courage to publish a voluntary recall on their homepage.

Are there any multichannel retailers you would like to praise, multichannel retailers who are doing unique and innovative things?


  1. Anonymous7:39 AM

    In the spirit of "one positive day", I'm going to post "one positive comment" (in contrast to my typical "great point -- but here are 101 reasons why you're wrong" kind of comment).

    Thanks for pointing out the positive aspects of these retailers' sites.

    I'm getting a little tired of reading Forrester's continuous berating of nearly everyone's sites and how they don't live up to Forrester's methodology.

  2. As always, the challenge is to get something done within a brand's culture.

    It is very easy to point out what everybody does wrong.

    It is also easy to charge $279 for a document that points out what everybody does wrong.

    It is very hard to take a job within a brand, and work within the culture of the brand to correct things that are perceived to be wrong.


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