One-Stop E-commerce: GiftCatalog.com
Mike Moroz, general manager of the Catalog Group for target.direct, notes, “There’s a lot of equity built into the individual brands. Possibly undermining that with a new brand is something we wrestled with through the entire project.”
Ladner says they looked for a name that wouldn’t stand in the way of its strong base brands. She explains, “Wireless, Seasons and Signals have distinct personalities, and we didn’t want something that would be in conflict with those. We also wanted something that, down the road, could be expanded. So our idea of GiftCatalog.com was to never make it the primary brand. ... It’s more of an ‘eyebrow’ above the brands.”
Bringing all of the catalog Web sites together under one URL with integrated search capabilities and one shopping cart, was not a difficult process, Ladner notes—their back-end operations already were integrated. To design and implement the new front end, a cross-company team was formed, comprised of staffers from the direct marketing, creative, Web navigation, technical services and finance areas, and led by a project manager.
“Our hurdles were less with the Web site and more with the guest advantage of being able to put merchandise from different catalog titles into one shopping bag,” says Ladner. “How do we track sales and handle branding back to the guests in terms of the packing slip, etc. That’s where we spent the most time in the logistical-planning phase.”
To solve these issues, representatives from guest services and warehouse management met with the project manager to map out the guest experience and provide for all branding contingencies. Moroz says the process of crediting GiftCatalog.com’s online sales back to the appropriate catalog remains a challenge, as it is for many multi-title catalogers. Says Moroz, “So far we’ve been making accurate assumptions for the most part. But we’re currently looking for an order-management system to help us allocate sales even more accurately.”