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Oct 02, 2003
Blog Post

What I learned at the show last week

SUMMARY: No summary available.
Last week, more than 800 execs from big retail Web sites got together in NYC at the show. Here are my quick notes:

- Key demographic trend: although most people think the economy is getting better, 43% of Americans are scared they'll lose their jobs in the next year.

- Search engine optimization is making a comeback as a tactic to invest more in. Everyone's still buying paid search ads, but "organic" listings you don't pay directly for were the big talking point. (And, yes you can measure their effectiveness.)

- Most Web site-display PCs in retail stores are "gathering dust." REI's Joan Broughton drew a shocked gasp from the crowd when she said hers are popular. (She incents the stores by giving them credit for any resulting sales.)

- Retailers are testing adding live chat in some new places, including the cart check-out process to see if it stops abandonment.

- Multi-channel marketing is an operations nightmare most people haven't come close to solving. "How many people have a master campaign calendar that tracks everything being sent in every channel?" A pitifully small show of hands.

- Best idea? One speaker said she gifted her company's overworked IT department with a few bottles of champagne to get them to move her metrics reports to the top of their dev list. "Without numbers, you're nothing."
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