CEO Sharon Price John says Build-A-Bear’s old e-commerce system is a big reason for disappointing online sales in December.
Online retailer eBags believes sophisticated and internally developed technology that gives shoppers specific product recommendations is a key reason sales at 6pm.com jumped 120% in December.
Online retailer eBags Inc. has spent more than a year retooling Shoedini.com into 6pm.com, an e-commerce site that features more than 120,000 shoes and handbags from over 230 brands.
But eBags, No. 91 in the Internet Retailer Top 400 Guide to Retail Web Sites, isn’t counting just on discount pricing and a large inventory to attract customers. Instead eBags believes that very sophisticated and internally developed technology that gives shoppers very specific product recommendations will make the biggest difference.
For 6pm.com, eBags created an algorithm that searches thousands of products and then makes 36 highly relevant, personalized shoe and accessory matches based on trend, color, fabrication and brand. “Go into most stores and shoppers will find shoes on the third floor and bags on the first,” says eBags vice president of marketing and merchandising Peter Cobb. “That’s a general disconnect we’ve addressed and fixed on 6pm.com.”
At 6pm.com visitors and shoppers also rate the merchandise, which in turn helps eBags constantly adjust product pages and inventory. For instance, product matches that receive high rankings rise to the top of the list and are featured more prominently on the home page and product pages, while matches that receive lower rankings are placed farther down.
Cobb says customers are noticing and using the technology. “Our holiday sales were up 120% this year over last on 6pm.com,” he says. “The artificial intelligence and advanced algorithm we added made a real difference.”