Alex and Ani builds customer data prowess via ereceipts
By Brielle Jaekel
January 20, 2016
NEW YORK An Alex and Ani executive at the NRF 105th Annual Convention & Expo stressed the importance of leveraging the data offered by mobile to create a better connection to the consumer, as exhibited by the retailer gaining insight from ereceipts.
During the "Elevating the In-Store Experience: Priorities and Preparedness" session, the executive detailed how the retailers push to go green through mobile-optimized email receipts allowed it to gain significant access to insight regarding customer behavior. Big retailers that fail to use all the data provided to them through digital devices are missing out on a huge opportunity to provide more tailored experiences to their customers.
"One example of collecting data from an in-store experience is ereceipts," said Ryan Bonifacino, former chief marketing officer and senior vice president of digital at Alex and Ani. "We were already established as a eco-friendly brand and when you ask someone for their email address at an eco-friendly business your success rate is very high."
Alex and Ani is gaining a serious understanding of its customers through the decision to opt for a digital email receipt system. By asking shoppers for their email address, the brand is able to see a variety of information on how that individual behaves.
The retailer is able to see when that customer opens the email, what kind of device they are on and where they are. This kind of information is vital in painting an accurate portrait of the customer, which is key in providing them with services helpful to their experience.
Mobile disruption has put the control in the consumers' hands, which means that retailers need to constantly be thinking about the customer experience. The common-known phrase the customer is always right is even more true today with consumers driving the retailer conversation.
The concept means that retailers need to gather as much data as they can to see how the customer wants to be marketed to as well as which pushes will best create a streamlined experience. Alex and Ani focuses on gathering information about the shopper in-store and out of store to optimize the omnichannel experience.
Relevant brand pushes
Now that customers are constantly connected, it is important to make sure the brand personality is made clear on the variety of channels.
It was easy for Alex and Ani to gain access to customers' emails, as it is an eco-friendly company, which its fans are already cognizant of and are likely to be as well. Eco-friendly shoppers are more than happy to give up their email addresses to help the environment by reducing the amount of paper receipts.
Other retailers need to think about how they can provide a means of connection to consumers that aligns with their brand image, similar to Alex and Anis eco-friendly email receipts.
"Through these email receipts you are not only able to mirror the online data but also behavioral data," Mr. Bonifacino said. "For instance which device, when your opening the email, where you are, and you can mirror that with Web site data and social data."