Many catalogers have evolved during the past decade from dedicated print catalogers to multichannel marketers. In expanding into other sales channels, most catalogers wisely have brought along e-commerce and brick-and-mortar retail specialists to run the additional channels.
But if your own efforts at multichannel marketing have been less than stellar, following are some success strategies that may prove useful.
Virtually every study that looks at consumers who shop via more than one channel shows that multichannel shoppers spend more. For instance, a recently completed Shop.org survey found:
- the average retail customer spent $1,267 per year in stores;
- customers who had visited retailers’ Web sites spent on average $1,380 in stores; and
- the average customer who has bought online spent $1,887 in stores, 50 percent more than those retail shoppers who don’t use the Web.
Certainly, if you add marketing channels, you’re doing something right. But as Laura Van Sickle, director of catalog and e-commerce for shoe marketer Johnston & Murphy (J&M), and Ann Delevante, president of consulting firm Crunch Marketing, pointed out, some marketers are doing some things seriously wrong. Specifically, they said, many marketers — particularly those rooted in retail who’ve evolved into catalogers and e-tailers — must address the oft-times distant relationship between catalog, e-commerce and retail departments in order to truly maximize the benefits of being multichannel.
As direct marketers, “We speak in terms of sales per square inch, response rates, average order values and dollars per book,” said Delevante, who consults for J&M. “Direct marketing is completely accountable through measurable results and return on investment. But retailers speak in terms of sales per square foot, units per transaction, dollars per transaction and multiples. They’re not used to having the trackable response metrics that we as direct marketers take for granted. So we must do it for them.”