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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : September 27, 2011

Report: Online brands need better local connections

In the land of retail, brands need a local connection. A reason for consumers to stop at a mall, storefront or online location to spend money. When it comes to larger brands, those making the best local, digital connections include Macy's, JC Penney and Best Buy finds new research from MaxPoint Interactive and RSR Research.

by Kristina Knight

rsrresearch.jpgCreating a relevant localized experience online is tough, but some brands are doing a good job at connecting with consumers in a locally driven, online way. A copy of the report can be downloaded here.

"Retailers tend to rely heavily on digital marketing efforts to drive ecommerce sales, but it's equally, if not more important, to drive people into stores," said Gretchen Joyce, President, MaxPoint Interactive. "It's our belief that all marketing efforts should work together to help customers navigate all of the touch points along the path to purchase. As the critical holiday season approaches, retailers should look for opportunities to use local targeting to drive traffic into their stores and restaurants."

The study looked at how brands engage through traditional and digital advertising as well as alternative offers and on-site communication. Using those criteria they found JC Penney, Sports Authority and Kohl's did the best job of utilizing all channels, but used fewer localized options than brands like Macy's and Best Buy.

"We found that, as a whole, retailers have not implemented localization as a major part of their advertising strategy, particularly as it relates to driving in-store traffic," said Nikki Baird, RSR Research Managing Partner and co-author of the report. "True cross-channel localization efforts - both in the targeting and the execution - continue to lag and there is still much to be done in this particular area of retail."

One example given in the report is that both retailers and restaurants are missing the local connection when it comes to offering promotional specials online; for example, offering a localized group coupon or offer to drive store traffic.

Tags: ecommerce, local advertising, MaxPoint Interactive, online advertising, online shopping, retail ads, RSR Research

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