Next week we’ll be heading to the 2016 Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference where, among other nominations, we’re sharing a finalist position with our partner, Orckestra. Microsoft’s Canadian IMPACT Awards recognize Microsoft partners that are “delivering leading solutions to Canadian businesses.” Microsoft named MediaValet, together with Orckestra, as a finalist in the “Winning Together Award” for our work with one of Canada’s largest retailers.
With retail tech changing by the second and customers demanding just-in-time information and engagement, a leading sports retailer leveraged the dual-power of Orckestra and MediaValet to launch their eCommerce solution and create a rapidly growing revenue channel.
$4.45 billion. That’s what retailers made online on Black Friday in 2015 according to a report in BusinessWire. Without the robust eCommerce infrastructure, Black Friday was simply just another in-store day for this retail giant and its franchisees. Until Black Friday of 2016, the day the retail game was forever changed with the unified cloud-based commerce platform.
To enable consumers to move seamlessly from desktop, to mobile, to stores with complete inventory visibility across the value chain by all players at all times, they looked to the leading industry players for help.
The seven-month count down to launch
In an effort to increase global competitiveness and remain relevant to customers, the company decided to invest in digital retail, but in an innovative way. Since the company wanted to emphasize digital technology just as much as physical store experience, they came up with a plan to launch their new dual-approach strategy on Black Friday, the infamous day following U.S. Thanksgiving that marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season.
The vision was to create a strategy that allowed retail customers shopping on Black Friday to move seamlessly between desktop, mobile, in-store locations and telephone conversations with representatives with complete access to the entire collection of inventory.
Unified eCommerce Solution Across Online & In-Store Sales
After doing their research, the company chose Orckestra’s next-generation e-commerce platform in an effort to create its seamless customer experience across all touchpoints. Orckestra knew that managing the massive amount of digital assets required to fuel retail operations would require a fully-integrated and incredibly robust digital asset management system (DAMS). They called on MediaValet, the world’s leading 100% cloud-based DAMS exclusively built on Microsoft Azure, and the collaboration between Orckestra and MediaValet began.
MediaValet provided seamless integration and enabled instant access, upload, download, rendering and sharing of all digital assets, leveraging them across multiple commerce channels.
With that integration in place, a foundation was built for the growing retailer’s eCommerce strategy. First up was growing the eCommerce website for their largest regional sports division. Once the website was launched, sport’s division’s customers were fully connected to a fully responsive site for purchases in multiple languages, centralized and up-to-date product data and inventory information, and a seamless buyer experience.
MediaValet became a critical tool in unifying their eCommerce solution across online and physical stores. MediaValet’s DAMS gave the teams continual and instant access to all rich media files, be it photos, video or audio files that were used to offer customers all of the visual messaging. Because the teams had easy access to the files and because MediaValet provided a standardized format for uploading, saving, downloading and sharing assets, the team was able to meet their deadline and created a Black Friday-ready omni-channel shopping experience.
Creating a Best-In-Class, In-Store Digital Experience
From their market research, the retailer knew that its customers craved a best-in-class digital experience, and the creative team came up with the idea of a digital product wall. When customers approach a wall displaying the store’s sports inventory, they’d also encounter digital touch screens that provide further specs, photos, details and purchasing suggestions for each product’s brand and model.
The digital wall provides effortless access to the informational demands that today’s consumers require before they make a purchase built on the expectation of product transparency and efficacy. Customers want data about the products they view at a granular level, and the digital wall provides that.
15% Growth and $1.5 Million in Online Revenue
Before choosing Orckestra & MediaValet, this retail organization reported a year-over-year loss in market shares. Online sales were falling, and customers were not satisfied with their in-store experiences.
With Orckestra in place and linked to the MediaValet DAMS, the strategy worked! Sales grew 15% in the 4th quarter alone, and since the launch of the site, the strategy has generated $1.5 million in online revenue. Over 11,000 transactions have been processed, and the typical online shopping cart average spent was over $140. The interactive digital product wall is also being showcased at national retail conferences as an example of an innovative approach to in-store experience.
This kind of momentum was a result of “a transition from old world retail to the new digitalization of retail.” Together, the e-commerce solution by Microsoft Partners Orckestra and MediaValet increased sales and resulted in over a million dollars in online revenue.
We’re looking forward to joining thousands of Microsoft Partners to celebrate the best of the Microsoft partner community together and discover opportunities for more winning solutions. Stop by and say hi to David MacLaren, our CEO and Founder, at the Canadian Showcase, Booth #314.