CEO Sharon Price John says Build-A-Bear’s old e-commerce system is a big reason for disappointing online sales in December.
Since January, subscriptions to DVDEmpire.com’s RSS feeds have at least doubled, even though the e-retailer does not actively promote RSS but simply provides a subscription link on the home page.
Another indicator of the growth of Really Simple Syndication as a preferred communications vehicle is a major upswing in the number of customer suggestions on RSS content. The company’s web site has a suggestions form offering customers account credit for any original ideas for the site it ultimately decides to adopt. With an RSS feed, consumers receive messages in an RSS reader on their desktop and can click on them for further details.
“We have been getting the most suggestions on search and items we could stock,” says director of operations Alicia Berry. “Suggestions on what we could include in the RSS feed had been nothing, but since December we have had a real increase. People are taking more of an interest in RSS.”
Like most e-retailers, DVDEmpire.com does e-mail marketing, among other vehicles, via an e-mail newsletter that goes out once a week. But it’s moving toward greater use of RSS feeds as an alternative, with the goals of making RSS delivery of the newsletter an option this summer as well as customizing the daily feeds it already does with customer-specific content and coupons.
The company plans to start its updated RSS feed project this month. The expanded RSS feeds will include all order notifications, order shipped, credit card billed, wish-list notification, rental notification, rental shipped, rental returned and rental billed information.