The 10 hottest topics to focus on when planning your eCommerce Expo itinerary

If you work in marketing for retail then eCommerce Expo is a must-attend event. This hot topic round-up will help you get the most from the event.

There’s going to be a lot of information to take in at this year’s show, and a lot of presentations you’ll want to attend. But you can’t be in 2 places at once and you certainly can’t attend every presentation.

So how best to focus on the key topics that will help you make a real difference in your business?

dotmailer has put together this Key Topic Round-Up to help you identify and narrow down the most current and critical marketing topics, challenges and opportunities facing the retail sector – then pick the Expo presentations that address your needs.

(And you’ll still have plenty of time to visit the dotmailer stand!)

Here then, are the 10 key topics we recommend you focus on when planning your eCommerce Expo itinerary.

1. Omni-channel marketing

Retailers who understand the practical application of omni-channel marketing are able to influence customer behaviour and harness customer data like never before.

An effective and achievable omni-channel approach to marketing places email at the core of marketing automation, and drives traffic, customer engagement and data collection through key customer touch points:

omni channel marketing

2. The connected customer

The way consumers engage with brands is changing fundamentally. From pre-purchase research through post purchase feedback, mobile, social media and m-commerce, these ‘always on’ channels have created a burgeoning ‘Connected Customer’ environment.

Retailers need to understand how to adapt and evolve their marketing approach to fit this connected customer culture. In practical terms, marketing automation and email/social media integration can help deliver this 24/7 approach, and ensure your marketing is ‘always on’.

3. Replicating the bricks & mortar experience online

bricks and mortar


Technology innovation in marketing automation and email marketing means the ‘human’ experience of shopping in-store can increasingly be replicated and even enhanced online, throughout the customer journey.

Our eCommerce Expo theatre tip: Digital bricks & mortar for retailers

4. Putting mobile first

Mobile opens exceeded the desktop in 2013. The roll-out of 4G combined with the uptake of tablets mean m-commerce and mobile engagement are set to dominate.

For retailers, the mobile user experience needs to be put ahead of the desktop, with responsive design for both website and email taking priority.

5. Mobile technology in-store

Geo location is the buzz word for online retailers with bricks & mortar outlets who are seeking to exploit the new and expanding opportunities mobile marketing offers.

Owned mobile apps are enabling marketers to target customers both within their shops and within the vicinity, using marketing automation and email to deliver timely and compelling value-add content that drives footfall, and both in-store and online sales.

6. ‘Me-tail’ and personalisation

A radical shift in consumers’ expectations of their relationship with online retail brands is happening as we speak. Consumers now increasingly expect relevant content and a personalised experience, both on the website and in the inbox. It’s all about the individual, and building a 1-2-1, real-time dialogue with them.

Retailers embracing data-driven marketing automation, predictive content, and value-add ‘youtility’ content will be in the best position to meet and exceed these consumer expectations.

Our eCommerce Expo theatre tip: Accelerate eCommerce by connecting shoppers to products
Our eCommerce Expo theatre tip: Digital bricks & mortar for retailers

7. Converting customer data into value

All the talk of ‘Big Data’ didn’t necessarily help the majority of marketers who face the challenge of collecting rich customer data and converting it into customer insight and value.

From customers’ in-store and mobile behaviour, to their browser searches, website journeys, social engagement, and email marketing engagement, the wealth of data has never been greater.  Harnessing this knowledge to deliver value through profiling, segmentation and marketing automation is the biggest of the big guns in every retailer’s arsenal.

Our eCommerce Expo theatre tip: Customer footprints: looking for and responding to needles in the data haystack

8. Marketing automation for online conversionsmarketing automation

Industry statistics indicate that on average, retailers are losing around 68% of sales to abandoned shopping carts (source: Baymard Institute).

Marketing automation, with email at its core, can deliver significant uplift in online conversions. By re-engaging abandoned visitors and carts, re-engaging lapsed customers and delivering the exact right message at the right time and point in an individual’s customer journey, automation is the tool of conversion rate optimisation.

Our eCommerce Expo theatre tip: Digital bricks & mortar for retailers

9. Social influencer marketing

Social media metrics for retailers are moving beyond the traditional measures of noise and reach. The critical factor is increasingly recognised as that of influence.

Marketers need the tools and know-how to profile their prospects, customers and advocates by their social media influence, and to convert that data into insight and then value, through relevant, compelling content and marketing automation.

10. Online retailer differentiation

As eCommerce moves into the next stage of its lifecycle, differentiation is becoming increasingly critical. The three key success factors enabling effective differentiation are emerging as:

  • Customer service.
  • Delivery of goods
  • User experience

The opportunity for marketers lies in delivering an exceptional and consistent user/customer experience that enriches and adds tangible value to the customer’s day.

Our Commerce Expo theatre tip: Visual merchandising online – best fit tools and best practice techniques

Meet the dotmailer email for Ecommerce team on stand 212 at eCommerce Expo, October 1-2, 2014

And don’t miss dotmailer’s presentation, ‘Digital bricks & mortar for retailers’, by Skip Fidura on Wednesday 1 October at 10.45 in the Digital & Mobile Marketing Theatre.

Expect to take away the thinking behind the best marketing automation programs proven to increase sales revenue, real-life examples of the best and the worst in email marketing, and a checklist of what your business can do to maximize customer engagement through email.