Mary Beth West has been on the retailer’s board for 10 years.
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Once shoppers are on an e-commerce site, it’s clear retailers are relying on more personalization, speedier site search and new and deeper content to get them to stay and make a purchase. To give shoppers a more satisfying experience, the survey reveals that 36.8% have implemented faster site search in time for this year’s holiday shopping season; 30.6% are adding larger product images; 29% developed an e-mail-to-a-friend program; 28.2% are implementing multi-channel inventory look-up; 25.8% are expediting faster order processing; 25.1% are building in more product reviews and 15.8% are using more zoom technology and rich media applications.
Gift cards that can be bought online, but redeemed across multiple channels are also becoming a holiday marketing and merchandising mainstay with retailers, according to the survey. Of the web retailers taking part in the research, 52.4% offer online gift cards. 40.3% listed online gift cards as being very important to their holiday financial performance, compared with 21.6% that cited gift cards as important, 18.7% as somewhat important, 12.9% as not very important and 6.5% that didn’t know.