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IBM Amplify Spotlight: Are You Causing Your Customers to Shop Elsewhere?

By Lori Angalich | Fri, Mar 17, 2017

IBM Amplify 2017 kicks off next week, and we're excited to be participating again as sponsors and presenters.  

For one of our sessions, we've teamed up with John Stelzer, IBM Senior Omni-channel Strategist, to share insights gained from comprehensive research on the topic of omnichannel retail. This includes several studies:

  • IBM Consumer Expectations Study, which covers what consumers expect
  • IBM 2016 Customer Experience Index, which describes how retailers are actually doing
  • IBM/Aberdeen Group 2016 InBalance Retailer Survey, which describes how retailers think they're doing

This session offers a rare opportunity to hear correlations and comparisons between these studies, see what's most important to consumers today, understand what has changed in recent times, and (if you're part of a retail organization) assess how your capabilities compare to other retailers.  

If you're attending IBM Amplify, read on to learn more about this session and add it to your agenda.  We hope to connect with you at Amplify and see you at the session!

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Omnichannel Order Orchestration: Increase Visibility, Efficiency and Customer Satisfaction

By Lori Angalich | Thu, Jul 28, 2016

Q&A with Alora Chistiakoff, Director of Commerce Services at Lightwell

We caught up with Alora Chistiakoff to discuss the challenges retailers are facing and the best practices around omnichannel order management and fulfillment. Here is a summary of what we discussed. 

  • What are the challenges to fulfilling orders across multiple locations?

Alora:  For retailers, there’s rarely one single source of truth for inventory information. There’s inventory from the store (in a POS), warehouse (in a WMS), drop ship inventory (in purchase orders), in-transit, on-order, on-demand, etcetera. To accurately understand fulfillment options, all of these pieces must be brought together into a single source, such as an order management system.

The real-time nature of this information is particularly important for retailers. A given warehouse might not be able to fulfill an order during a morning wave, but could put everything in place to ship the order later that afternoon.

They must quickly decide which is more important: getting the order out from the closest distribution center in the afternoon, or sending it in the morning from a location farther away at a higher shipping cost. Having sophisticated order orchestration capabilities is critical for this.

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NRF Retail's BIG SHOW 2016 Wrap Up

By Julie Baker | Tue, Feb 02, 2016

Lightwell team members were among the more than 33,000 attendees at the National Retail Foundation (NRF) Retail’s BIG SHOW 2016 in New York City. The Javits Center exhibit halls, ballrooms, and smaller session rooms were swelled to capacity with retailers, technology vendors, and other industry thought leaders and innovators.

Large conferences can be overwhelming, to say the least, so it’s important to focus on networking and coming away with a few great kernels of knowledge, a connection, or a new way of better meeting the needs of your customers.

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Omni-channel retail: Tips to ensure successful strategy integration

By Lightwell | Fri, Feb 06, 2015

Customers utilize a range of avenues to connect with and make purchases from industry-leading retailers. From leveraging mobile devices and desktop computers to visiting a company's brick-and-mortar locations, consumer behavior has driven the need for an omni-channel retail approach like never before.

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IBM at the National Retail Federation convention: Customer analytics for omni-channel success

By Lightwell | Wed, Jan 14, 2015

This week is the National Retail Federation's annual convention, nicknamed "Retail's BIG Show," and for good reason. This is one of the largest gatherings of the biggest names in the retail industry, including service providers and experts from omni-channel, e-commerce, B2B commerce and other sectors.

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Omni-channel commerce: 24-hour shopping crowd

By Lightwell | Mon, Nov 03, 2014

With the holiday shopping season almost upon us, it's time for the yearly speculation on what retailers are preparing to do to woo customers. Over the last few years, we've seen a shift from a focus on discounts and deals to approaches that concentrate on availability. Much was made of last year's decision by many retailers to stretch Black Friday hours well into Thanksgiving Day, and whether you're praising the companies for the decision to give customers more choice or lamenting the intrusion of the shopping world on a family day, it's safe to say that hours aren't likely to contract anytime soon. 

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Getting over common hurdles in omni-channel commerce

By Lightwell | Mon, Jun 16, 2014

Omni-channel commerce is the way of the future for both brick-and-mortar and digital selling, but it can be hard to conquer. Hurdles abound as companies and supply chains make the transition from a single or siloed selling strategy to one that fully integrates both physical and virtual vending. What is needed is not simply an expansion of current strategies to encompass digital stores and expanded order and inventory chains. A company that wants to optimize its omni-channel commerce investment must address some fundamental transformations. 

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A problem-solution approach to a successful omni-channel commerce strategy

By Lightwell | Fri, Apr 25, 2014

For many organizations, omni-channel commerce success still seems like a dim light at the end of a long tunnel. No matter how far removed a company's operations strategies and technology platform are from an optimal e-commerce effort, however, the light continues to gleam. Despite the barriers, retailers know that omni-channel commerce is vital if they expect to thrive in today's digital landscape.

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Keeping up with the 'Omnis': Overcoming challenges in omnichannel retailing

By Lightwell | Wed, Apr 16, 2014

The omnichannel retail experience may be the future of the consumer marketplace, but many vendors are having trouble getting out of a legacy approach. Unlike more surface-level changes in selling strategies, establishing a viable omnichannel retail platform is more than simply developing a marketing campaign or tweaking technology. In order to keep up with and outdistance competitors by delivering a consistently meaningful customer experience, organizations need a comprehensive approach.

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Can retailers keep up with the demands of omni-channel commerce?

By Lightwell | Mon, Apr 14, 2014

As a sweeping transformation in the way retailers do business, omni-channel commerce was bound to produce some growing pains. However, it is fast moving past the "hype" stage. The early adoption stage is always fraught with roadblocks, and the organizations that lead the charge end up bearing the brunt of the hiccups. There's less of a likelihood that a company can ride the first wave of implementation to a significant competitive advantage.

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