August 29, 2008

Multichannel Forensics A to Z: Quick Fix

More often than not, I conduct Multichannel Forensics analyses for brands that are struggling.

There's a hope that the project will yield that "ah ha" moment, one that identifies the core problem.

And we do have those "ah ha" moments, moments that identify the core problem.

Seldom do we identify a problem that can be fixed quickly. Often, the problem isn't within or across channels. In fact, the problem seldom has to do with channels. The problem almost always has to do with merchandise.

One of the sins of the past ten years is an economy based on cheap money. For a decade, we became lazy. Demand increased, and a new channel (the internet) fueled perceived growth.

When cheap money went away, our lazy practices conspired against us. We used to offer the customer free shipping, then marvel at the 20% increase in volume. Now, sales are down 20%, and if we execute the free shipping promotion, we just get the business back to where it used to be, albeit with less profit.

There won't be any quick fixes. We spent more than a decade getting ourselves in this mess. Only excellence will pull us out.

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