Saks Fashions Omnichannel Associates

— May 13, 2016

Luxury retailer Saks Fifth Avenue has found a unique way to offer online shoppers the personalization of its brick-and-mortar experience. As part of the Hudson’s Bay Company brand portfolio (founded in 1670), Saks operates 38 full-line stores in 22 states, five international licensed stores and saks.com. With new technology, shoppers can now connect online with Saks associates around the clock.

“This is a highly personalized online solution to selling, merging our highest trafficked channel —saks.com — with our highest converter — our associates,” commented Marc Metrick, president, Saks Fifth Avenue. “It is the perfect response to the growing demand for consumer-facing technology.”

Through this new offering, which was brought to life in partnership with Salesfloor, Saks associates have the ability to create customizable saks.com boutique pages, which contain personally curated assortments of Saks merchandise, accessible through a dedicated URL. As a result, associates can connect with new and existing customers online, touting their hand-picked merchandise, expertise and industry knowledge, via live chat, e-mail or scheduled appointments. In addition, Saks associates can showcase their online storefronts to customers through
e-mail and social media tools built into an internal associate mobile app.

“One of the big things for us as a company has been a focus on how we drive better connection to our customers and really build loyalty with our customers, and create meaningful connections,” noted Joe Milano, senior vice president, general manager, digital retail and e-commerce, Saks Fifth Avenue.

“Online we do a lot of interesting things with personalization, product recommendations, things of that elk, but we don’t have the opportunity to really create dynamic one-to-one connections. We know from all of our data that when we do that, you have a happier customer and from a company perspective that customer has more loyalty to us. So we tried to find a way to do that in a very interesting way, especially when we’ve seen the proliferation with how customers spend their time with digital technologies.”

The company explored a few different options, but found Salesfloor was the most robust solution to solve the company’s needs and to be its business partner for the project. The solution has been rolled out to 16 locations and is being used by 650 associates nationwide.
“Candidly, it’s been a success across the board,” said Milano. “So that’s the good news.”

The customers have embraced it because it allows them to be connected to their associate even when they’re not in the store, he explained.
“The types of data we’re seeing in terms of results are obviously positive, we’re growing it out, but we’re seeing metrics very consistent with some of the metrics we’ve seen with our in-store business,” he noted. Milano said they’ve had several instances where this has brought new customers into the store to interact with associates they met online.
The challenge now, he said, is to roll the solution out in a very concerted way so the company is able to adapt and grow it around associate and customer needs as it continues to be deployed.  RIS

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