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CalmSea unveils social commerce optimization solution

BY Michael Johnsen

SAN MATEO, Calif. — CalmSea on Sunday announced the release of its new social commerce optimization solution, which leverages CalmSea’s predictive commerce platform with Facebook APIs to provide retailers the ability to engage, grow and monetize their Facebook fan base.

With CalmSea’s program, retailers are better able to understand their customers’ preferences and deliver targeted promotions — such as private sales, group-buys, sweepstakes, contests and more.

Through a standard Facebook integration, promotions are built and managed within CalmSea’s solution, then deployed to Facebook where social interactions then can be measured and optimized in real time.

“Retailers are increasingly recognizing the power of engaging their customers on Facebook,” stated Jim Dai, CalmSea CEO. “The question they face now is ‘How do we personalize promotions and engagement to each fan and then measure the ROI of each promotion?’ CalmSea’s social commerce optimization solution provides a turnkey way to do just that — to measure engagement levels of their Facebook fans.”

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SAS, Winn-Dixie enter partnership

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK — SAS on Monday announced a five-year agreement with Winn-Dixie Stores around the company’s marketing and merchandising analytics offering.

“We chose SAS because of [its] strong commitment to retail and analytical excellence,” stated Maura Hart, Winn-Dixie’s CIO. “This partnership will enhance our customers’ shopping experience with the implementation of SAS’ technology and resources to provide improvements in pricing, assortment and category management.”

“Many grocers have mountains of data, but they lack the time and resources to gain meaningful intelligence from it,” noted Diana McHenry, director of global retail product marketing at SAS. “SAS is building a bridge so grocers can reap the rewards of advanced analytics just like other segments of the retail industry. … This will help grocers predict buying behavior and identify customers who are at risk of rolling their shopping cart to the competition.”

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Kroger looks to speed up self-checkout lines

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK — Fujitsu on Monday unveiled its latest checkout technology at the National Retail Federation trade show. According to the company, the new technology boasts reduced time in lines and a customer-friendly checkout experience.

Fujitsu also said that supermarket giant Kroger currently is evaluating the new technology in a limited number of its stores to boost the retailer’s Advanced Checkout areas. Kroger CIO Chris Hjelm said that the retailer noted a steady increased use of its Advantage Checkout lanes and that the response from customers and associates exceeded expectations.

"Customers are … choosing the Advantage Checkout because of its many enhancements to the shopping experience. These enhancements include increased scanning and bagging speed and accuracy, minimizing of queuing for the payment process and the opportunity for improved associate engagement in both full-service and self-checkout modes," Hjelm said. "We believe this system has the potential to revolutionize the front-end experience in our retail stores, providing a superior checkout experience for our customers and associates."

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