By Michael Klein, Head of Industry Strategy – Retail, Travel & CPG – for Adobe Systems
To stand out as a retailer, you must be exceptional which comes down to one thing – experience. The customer experience is always right, and retailers must lead in Customer Experience Management (CXM) to stay competitive and drive shopper loyalty. Adobe is helping retailers address this, with 80 of the top 100 U.S. online retailers relying on Adobe Experience Cloud.
In today’s challenging retail landscape, ecommerce is carrying the torch for retail growth overall. Despite many retailers reporting slower than expected consumer spending for the 2018 holiday season, digital was a diamond in the rough. Adobe Analytics found online sales increased 16.5% during the 2018 holiday season, over seven times the rate of brick and mortar stores with 2.3%* growth. Buy online pick up in-store (BOPIS) increased 50% YoY according to Adobe Analytics.
Today we’re introducing innovations in Adobe Experience Cloud that help retailers excel in CXM across physical and digital storefronts. Adobe Sensei, our AI and machine learning technology, further automates CXM, helping retailers work smarter and faster. Our new capabilities for retailers include:
• Uncover insights that drive conversions & loyalty: Retailers are struggling to keep up with an avalanche of data from websites, mobile apps, smart speakers and more. Virtual analyst in Adobe Analytics leverages Adobe Sensei to scour retailers’ data and prioritize changes that will improve the customer experience and ultimately drive the business. Its aim is to automatically surface and answer questions that retailers never thought to ask, and adapt over time to user feedback to make its insights more and more personalized. A retailer may, for example, uncover and resolve a bug on a critical web page that would have resulted in lost revenue.
• Close the mobile conversion gap: Mobile shopping continues to skyrocket, yet retailers are grappling with low conversion rates and the complexity of building and managing engaging experiences across channels. In fact, the 2018 holiday season saw 51.4% of visits from smartphones but only 31.0% of revenue from smartphones according to Adobe Analytics. The new Progressive Web Applications (PWAs) Studio in Magento Commerce Cloud, part of Experience Cloud, solves this challenge by enabling merchants and developers to build online stores with fast, engaging app-like experiences that boost conversions and enhance the pervasiveness of the in-store experience. Merchants can leverage PWAs to improve engagement, simplify payments, issue push notifications and drive traffic in-store to enhance the shopper experience at a fraction of the cost.
• Easily design, personalize & optimize ads: Retailers gain control over elements of display ads — including design, copy, layout and more — with a new self-serve platform, Adobe Advertising Cloud Creative. Benefits include rapid rollout of new offers and designs without the painful and expensive steps of re-trafficking or starting the design process over from scratch. The platform features native integrations with Adobe Creative Cloud and Adobe Analytics Cloud to enable retailers to more easily personalize ads based on a potential customer’s shopping behavior, loyalty program status and more. Also, new Adobe Sensei-powered capabilities enable retailers to manage, optimize and report on search ad campaigns specifically for retail promotions and events. Advertising Cloud’s performance optimization and forecasting capabilities increase traffic to retailer e-commerce websites and physical stores during promotional periods.
• Leverage photo-based product search and videos from social media: Imagine uploading a photo of an outfit you saw on TV or in a magazine to a retailer’s app to find similar items for purchase. A project we’re previewing from Adobe Research for potential integration in Adobe Experience Manager does precisely this, offering the industry’s most accurate photo-based search results. Adobe Sensei in Experience Manager automatically searches a retailer’s entire inventory online and serves up clothing similar to the photo. We’re also enhancing Smart Tags in Experience Manager to handle video. Retailers can now automate video discovery with tags that correspond to the actions, attributes and objects in video eliminating the need to manually sort through hundreds of relevant clips for retailers’ brand channels, or to be displayed in-store.
• Customize product recommendations based on audience: Retailers can harness Adobe Sensei-powered capabilities in Adobe Target to automatically choose the best algorithm to deliver personalized recommendations to each of its audience segments, all from the same campaign. For example, a furniture retailer can automatically display new contemporary living room furniture within its app or on its website to its main audience, home owners. At the same time, it can deliver inexpensive, space-saving furniture recommendations to its secondary audience, college students.
• Easily add lists to emails: Adobe Campaign is making it easy for retailers to embed personalized product lists into promotional emails, eliminating the need for coding. Retailers can customize shipment emails to display 15 items purchased by one shopper, for example, versus the two items a different shopper ordered. Only Adobe combines this ability with its creative heritage, to enable customized, engaging emails with simple design tools.
• Connect data and act on it in real time: Retailers struggle to attain a complete view of shoppers’ interactions and their own operations. Adobe and Microsoft’s combined CXM and sales capabilities, coupled with Adobe, Microsoft and SAP’s Open Data Initiative, address this, providing retailers with a holistic view of their customers and the ability to create real-time, personalized retail experiences both on and offline.
Experience Cloud played a pivotal role in supporting retailers during the busiest time of the year — the holiday season. On Black Friday, Experience Manager enabled shoppers with a record 42 billion rich content interactions. Adobe Target delivered 28% more engagements on Black Friday and 45% more on Cyber Monday in 2018 in comparison to 2017. Advertising Cloud handled 18.44 million search clicks in December 2018, and averaged 170.1 million demand-side processing (DSP) and creative impressions daily.
Adobe is changing the world through digital experiences.
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