More than 50 percent of all catalog orders are now placed via the internet. This development has impacted the use of bind-in catalog order forms. In fact, this growing trend has impacted the use of any type of order form. That said, the order form in a print catalog can still be beneficial. The decision to eliminate an order form shouldn't be based solely on saving money or on the percentage of orders received via the mail. There are other factors to consider.
Lett Direct Inc.
Sure, many multichannel retailers today are testing postcard mailings in an effort to drive web traffic in place of mailing catalogs. But, while mailing postcards is less expensive than catalogs, do they really work? And are they cost effective?
In late November, we surveyed the All About ROI editorial board members and other marketing insiders to gauge their views on the year ahead. At press time on the eve of the 2009 holiday homestretch, with their hopes for a better sales outcome than 2008 looking modest at best, few saw an especially bright light shining by December. Instead, many settled in to make the appropriate adjustments for reduced demand.
There's a cost associated with acquiring new buyers through print media. Marketers who rely heavily on catalogs need to invest in converting prospects to buyers (one-time purchasers) and buyers to customers (two-time or more purchasers). How much you're willing to pay for new buyers depends on what you can afford, how fast you want to grow and the lifetime values of the buyers acquired.
Catalog requests or inquiries generated from the Internet are like diamonds in the rough. But how long it takes to fulfill these requests determines their true value to your company. Fulfillment time has a direct bearing on order conversion rates, and best practice says prospective buyers should receive the catalogs they requested online within 14 calendar days.Catalog requests or inquiries generated from the Internet are like diamonds in the rough. But how long it takes to fulfill these requests determines their true value to your company. Fulfillment time has a direct bearing on order conversion rates, and best practice says prospective buyers should receive the catalogs they requested online within 14 calendar days.
I’m optimistic that 2009 will be a better year for multichannel merchants, even though the experts say our recovery will be gradual. There are bright spots within given merchandise categories, such as religious goods, pet supplies and hobbies — all of which are doing well — just to name a few.
Tired of reading about what a tough year it’s been for so many businesses across the board? Frustrated with your own results? Scared about the economy? Whether or not you’re struggling as much as others, here’s a little tonic: our annual best-of feature, in which we’ve pulled what we believe to be the 50 best and most implementable tips of the year from Catalog Success magazine as well as our weekly e-newsletter, Tactics & Tips. There’s nothing fancy here. Each paragraph is taken from a particular story that’s referenced, so you can turn or click back to reread the full story or act on
The more I examine the whole catalog-to-multichannel transition, the more I realize how very much it remains a work in progress for both B-to-C and B-to-B catalogers. There are still plenty more phases ahead. Last month, this was certainly top-of-mind when we held a free Catalog Success webinar called The Coordinated Sell - Redefined for 2009 & Beyond. Our Strategy columnist Stephen R. Lett and Creative Irish Gifts catalog Vice President Rob O’Connor both gave excellent presentations. If you missed it, I invite you to go to our Web site and click on the “Webinars” tab toward the top of our homepage for a
When I taught direct marketing at Indiana University, I told my students to write “merchandising” if they didn’t know the answer to a question so they could receive 50 percent credit. I wanted these second-year MBA students to know the importance of merchandising. But product selection and circulation determine the success of any catalog/Internet business. And knowing how many pages to circulate is my topic this month. Specifically, I’ll explore the following: • What basic criteria determine proper page count? • What are the economics of adding pages? • How can adding pages be a successful strategy in these difficult economic times?
For catalog/multichannel merchant Creative Irish Gifts, 2005 proved to be a turning point. After 18 straight years of profit growth, the marketer of Irish and Celtic-themed gifts was confronted with a crisis. It was greatly overmailing a tapped-out prospect universe, said Rob O’Connor, vice president of Creative Irish Gifts, during the recent Catalog Success webinar, The Coordinated Sell — Redefined for 2009 & Beyond, sponsored by Sigma Micro. The result: For the first time in the company’s history, it lost money. This led to a strategic decision on the company’s part to shift its focus online. With the company realizing 2 percent to 3