ChannelAdvisor recently unveiled its 2014 Spring Release, with the tagline “Making Retail Smarter.” Today we’ll chat with Jackie Jenkins, ChannelAdvisor Sr. Product Manager, about the headliner in this release: Digital Marketing.
Q: Hi Jackie. Can you share with us what you do at ChannelAdvisor?
A: Sure. I’ve been with ChannelAdvisor for 4 years, working closely with customers as well as services and engineering team members to drive ChannelAdvisor’s vision for its advertising solutions. This includes feature developments for paid search, remarketing, comparison shopping, social and product ads. Prior to ChannelAdvisor I worked for Google, managing $10 million worth of quarterly ad revenue for advertisers.
Q: The theme of the 2014 Spring Release is “Making Retail Smarter.” What can retailers expect from smarter digital marketing?
A: Well, digital marketing is a super-complicated space–not only do retailers have, literally, hundreds of potential sites to list their products on, they also have to measure traffic and product performance on each of these sites. We’ve found that many are struggling with this due to the fact that their digital marketing channels are managed by different parties–for example, they may be outsourcing the management of their paid search campaigns to one agency, their social campaigns to another, and managing shopping channels in house. Managing things this way makes it incredibly hard to reconcile data from all these different areas for a holistic view of performance that enables smarter spending of their digital dollars.
With the Spring Release, we’re offering online sellers the ability to manage all of their digital marketing programs through the ChannelAdvisor platform, so they can send us one data feed that we’ll optimise and distribute to all of their relevant digital marketing channels. Sellers can then see their performance–down to the product level–and make smarter future decisions based upon where they are seeing the greatest ROI.
Q: What are you most excited about in this release?
A: It’s tough to pick just one thing, so I’m going to cheat and pick 2.
- Our new Portfolio Bidder is pretty exciting, mainly because it’s delivering incredible results. For background, the Portfolio Bidder uses a proprietary algorithm to predict optimal bids to maximise revenue. We have retailers who have seen as much as a 300% lift in conversion rates, which is pretty exciting, all while keeping overall effective revenue share (ERS) in line with goals. What’s extra cool is that the Portfolio bidder gets smarter over time by conducting ongoing bid combination experiments and incorporating successes.
- The second feature I’m excited about is our Actionable Retail Insights. As I mentioned earlier, there is a lot for retailers to think about when they are selling online. Actionable Retail Insights surface all the relevant information necessary for retailers to make smarter, metrics-based business decisions. For example:
- Conversion Path reporting- to better understand how a user’s path to purchase impacts things like Average Order Value
- Product Opportunity Reporting- to make sure you have complete visibility into where your top products are selling
I’m also pretty excited about Merchant Promotions, but I know you guys spent a good amount of time covering that with Matt Jones so I’ll skip it here.
Q: We can definitely see how these solutions make retailers smarter! Thanks for your time, Jackie. Can you leave us with any hints of what’s next for ChannelAdvisor Digital Marketing?
A: Most of that is highly qualified, but I would suggest that retailers join me and Google for our webinar on Google Shopping campaigns on June 4th, especially since Shopping campaigns are going to be mandatory as of August 2014. We’ll be filling retailers in on everything they need to know about Shopping campaigns, and what they need to do to switch over.