October 9, 2003, 12:00 AM

Analytics pave the way for improved site merchandising at CollectiblesToday

An internally-driven system that read log files gave CollectiblesToday only a limited view of customer activity. A switch to Coremetrics’ analytic solution offered new data to drive better on-page item placements and more effective online campaigns.

A switch from an internally-driven system that read log files to collect site data to the data warehouse platform of analytics provider Coremetrics Inc. paved the way for more effective sales and merchandising decisions at CollectiblesToday.com, director of marketing Steve Milo tells Internet Retailer.

The site, the online channel of collectibles direct marketers The Bradford Exchange, Ashton Drake and The Hamilton Collection, offers about 5,000 SKUs. But it was limited in its ability to capture specific data on sales performance under the old system. For example, “We knew what our aggregate sales were but didn’t know where on the site the items were selling from,” Milo says. That left CollectiblesToday.com with an incomplete view of the performance of its site merchandising placements, since the same item may be placed in multiple locations throughout the site. The same doll, for example, may be displayed on the home page, a brand page, and a category page.

Since implementing Coremetrics` solution in January, CollectiblesToday.com has been able to determine how placements on each page are performing against baseline expectations for sales contribution from the page, data that’s used to drive future merchandising decisions on the site. Similarly, data it can now collect on customer response to specific items in multi-product e-mail offerings have helped shape more targeted and effective e-mails, Milo adds.

In addition, he says, Coremetrics` platform allows CollectiblesToday.com to build reports on campaign performance across a variety of new customer activities including affiliates, banners, and more. “It’s been extremely strong in search, because we are able to collect data not just on sales from pay for performance search but also organic search,” says Milo. “As we get more specific information it allows us to be more effective in our decisions as to how we optimize our keyword portfolio.”

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