Press Release: Listrak Announces Magento 2.0 Extension

Tuesday, May 31, 2016 Listrak 0 Comments

 LITITZ, PA — (May, 2016) —Lititz, PA-based Listrak, an independently owned marketing automation platform used by leading online and omnichannel retailers, is excited to introduce its Magento 2.0 Extension. The Listrak extension has been certified and verified by Magento after a rigorous process that included documentation review and a formal code audit, ensuring that it has been developed according to Magento standards and best practices for coding structure, performance and scalability.

James Williams, Listrak director of global channel sales, comments, “Listrak was honored to have been one of just a handful of ESPs selected by Magento to become certified. With the launch of Listrak’s Magento 2.0 Extension, we demonstrate our continued commitment to Magento, as well as to retailers on the Magento platform. The new extension will allow retailers to have access to valuable customer insights and to reach customers with highly personalized, timely, relevant cross-channel messaging that drives engagement and conversions.”

Listrak has worked with Magento since its inception and has built a reputation for having a solid and easy integration with the Magento platform. Listrak works with more than 250 retailers on the Magento platform to help them gain insights into customer shopping behavior with our integrated digital marketing platform.

The Listrak Magento 2.0 Extension, like the previous 1.14 Extension, offers retailers an integrated marketing platform providing omnichannel retail solutions, including acquisition, recommendations, back-in-stock alerts, shopping cart recovery, browse recovery, advanced retail segmentation and post purchase messaging.  Listrak’s modules expose data for use with Listrak, while reducing IT involvement and valuable time through a seamless integration.

Listrak’s Magento 2.0 Extension features list subscription and synchronization, triggered messaging, multipass messaging, catalog synchronization, dynamic merchandising, advanced segmentation, multi-path offer testing and order history analysis.  

About Listrak

Listrak is the only marketing automation platform designed distinctly for online and omni-channel retailers. Listrak is helping digital marketers create personalized interactions to reach, engage and convert their shoppers across email, mobile, social, display, web and in the store. The Listrak platform boasts a comprehensive set of retail-specific solutions that enhance promotional campaign performance, shopping cart and browse abandonment solutions that recoup lost revenue, post-purchase solutions to increase lifetime value and product recommendations to personalize every customer touchpoint across multiple channels and more. Listrak has more than a decade of digital marketing experience and works with leading U.S. retailers, including Stuart Weitzman, Robert Graham, AC Moore, Le Creuset and Zumiez. For more information, visit


Navigating the Changing Retail Landscape

Friday, May 20, 2016 Listrak 0 Comments

There is no doubt that the retail landscape is going through drastic changes fueled by customer interaction and expectations as well as readily available technology and actionable data points. I attended the Shoptalk 2016 event this past week to hear how retailers are navigating this new landscape and learned that while there are many retailers that are doing great things in one area, no one has truly cracked the code to figure it all out yet. But that’s okay. At this point, small changes can make a huge impact to your bottom line.

The Customer is in Control
One of my favorite quotes from Shoptalk 2016 came from Jonathan Alferness, Google’s VP of Product Management – Shopping. He said, “We don’t go online. We live online.” It’s true. Your customers are always connected, which provides a lot of opportunities but also a lot of challenges. You can’t abuse the access. You must carefully craft all interactions while letting the customer be in control.

Customers are now the Point of Sale, which means you have to meet them where and how they shop in order to remove all friction from the customer journey. Omnichannel and multichannel strategies have been replaced by a distributed commerce model as there can no longer be ANY divide between channels. Customers don’t shop in channels, they simply interact in a way that is most convenient at any given time and the distributed commerce model provides a way for them to purchase any product anywhere at any time.

This is a big win for retailers as it provides more opportunities to engage shoppers through carefully curated content and events that enhance the customer experience. This means retailers don’t have to rely on promotions to win business. The great experiences lead to longer lasting relationships and greater customer loyalty than a simple reward program or discount code ever could.

What does this mean for you?
  • Customers don’t want, need or expect the same exact message in each channel. Messaging should remain consistent but should be complementary and targeted to each touchpoint.
  • You shouldn’t care how products end up in your customers’ homes as long as they end up there! Remember, customers are now the Point of Sale, so make it easy for them to purchase online, in-store, on mobile devices, in social channels – and don’t forget about traditional channels like catalogs and call centers.
  • You don’t have to rely on discounts and promotions to build loyalty. Great content and experiences are what customers are after these days.
  • Before adding new technology, programs, events or even new content, ask yourself if it enhances the customer experience, reduces friction in the customer journey and streamlines the checkout process. If it doesn’t accomplish those three things, don’t do it. Don’t add technology just for the sake of it or customers and even your own employees won’t use it. Also, rethink how to acquire customer data in-store. Simply asking for an email address during checkout slows down the checkout process and doesn’t enhance the shopping experience for customers. Instead, offer an eReceipt as it adds value while accomplishing the same goal for acquisition.
  • Give customers control over the way they interact with you. A simply way to do that is to add more triggered messages to your email strategy. This allows you to personalize messages on a true 1:1 level. You should also segment your list and send highly targeted messages to small groups instead of sending the same message and offer to everyone. Email is still the best way to reach your audience and it still provides the highest ROI, you just have to be a little savvier with your messaging.
  • Conversational commerce is not just a trend. Millennials grew up online, which means they are informed. They are also extremely judicious when it comes to spending money. Millennials need the personal experiences and brand and product knowledge – not just a discount – in order to make a purchase decision. The right content will make it easier for them to shop. 

Personalize the Experience for Each Customer
Many shoppers are turning to retailers’ sites for product information, not necessarily to transact. It’s not enough to just be online anymore. 90% of all retail revenue comes from in-store transactions and 34% of online revenue comes from mobile devices. What’s even more interesting is that at 45%, nearly half of all purchases – online or in-store – include mobile at some point. In most cases it is the first touchpoint with customers so you should think “mobile first”. Best in class mobile engagement drives traffic to stores, enhances experiences and provides data to personalize future messages.

If you don’t currently have a store, now it the time to think about adding a physical location. Real-time retail is still the most viable sales channel but it’s important to note that there are many business models, such as Bonobos, where the stores don’t carry any inventory. They exist as show rooms where customers can interact with sales associates and each other, try on or experience the merchandise firsthand, and then order products in the store or later on their mobile device or computer.

Stores are offering more entertainment options to increase loyalty – such as private gyms, parties, paint or yoga classes, live music, etc. In some extreme cases, retailers focus on these interactions while the transactions are automated, giving customers control as they can do everything from add items to their fittings room, request new sizes and checkout without needing to talk to a sales associate. Instead, the sales associate is there to enhance the experience without “selling”.

What does this mean for you?
  • Personalization must be a big part of your messaging as promotional fatigue is evident in email and engagement metrics.
  • Emotion, not price, drives loyalty. Connecting on a personal level with each shopper is the key.
  • Personalization is much more than optimizing messages for the last click as the consideration process is much longer than that. Personalize messages using a number of customer data points, such as browse and purchase history. What a customer bought is the most predictive data point of what they’ll buy next.
  • Personalization needs to go across all channels and isn’t just about the message, but the experience and interaction. That means that your stores should provide fun events, mobile messaging should be tailored to segments – like the power user or novice, display ads should contain images of previously browsed merchandise, emails should be triggered and relevant and your social channel should provide great content and shoppable buttons.
  • Personalization doesn’t have to be 1:1 as timely and relevant messages sent to a shopping segment is typically enough to provide the personalized experience.

Distributed and Conversational Commerce Level the Playing Field
Nearly every retailer competes with Amazon. But this shift in consumer behavior helps to level the marketplace as it gives you the opportunity to connect in more personal and meaningful relationships with your customers than what Amazon can currently provide. While shoppers – especially Prime members – turn to Amazon because of the convenience, the relationship doesn’t go much deeper than that. There isn’t much of an emotional connection.

You just have to think creatively while listening to your core group of customers to deliver what they want, when they want it. And, when you do that, you will have cracked the code to distributed and conversation commerce.


Thoughts from Forrester Marketing 2016 and Mcommerce Summit

Friday, May 20, 2016 Listrak 0 Comments

I recently had the privilege of attending two very informative conference – Forrester Marketing 2016 and Mcommerce Summit - both with an impressive, knowledgeable roster of presenters. While it’s easy to sink into information overload mode after hearing so many ideas from so many different speakers, I found that a few key topics and themes consistently came up and made an impact. 

Below is an assortment of thoughts that stuck out. Some are direct quotes, while others may be paraphrased, but all are worth noting:


There have been three stages of marketing history: pre-digital, which was one-to-many; digital, which was one-to-one; and now post digital, which is one-to-moment.
Carlton Doty, Forrester VP, group director   

Post digital marketing must be frictionless, anticipatory and immersive. Retailers must be human, helpful and handy and must flex to meet the context of the situation.
Shar VanBoskirk, Forrester VP, analyst

Retail marketers must start with a need and then find technology to fill it.
Justin Toupin, Walmart director of mobile products and strategies

Every retailer is competing with the retailer offering the best mobile experience. Those retailers (like Sephora) set the expectation.
Perry Kramer, Boston Retail Partners VP and practice lead

Technology must address customers’ emotions. It’s all about unique, relevant and integrated customer experiences.
Victor Bataya, IKEA global head of mobile solutions


Metrics and KPIs tell you how you’re doing, but not what’s coming…Organizations need to understand why, and data alone cannot tell why - or why not.

People are more than clicks and impressions.
Mickey Mericle, Adobe VP of marketing insights, analytics and operations

Human curiosity and intuition are the most important algorithms in marketing today.

Buzz and sentiment don’t always translate to revenue.

Coincidence and correlation are not the same thing. Data can provide correlations, but not causation. Marketers must learn to recognize the difference.

Curiosity is an algorithm that says “explore this”. Intuition is an algorithm that says “decide this”.
Joshua Reynolds, Qunatafind dead of marketing and client consulting

Never forget that at the other end of the pixel is a real human being.
Phil Bienert, GoDaddy CMO and EVP of digital commerce

Marketers have chosen patterns over people -pattern understanding over people understanding.

Marketers must use both big data and small data – quantitative and qualitative – and both find insight and spark insight. 
Srividya Sridharan, Forrester VP, research director


Mobile myths from a millennial’s perspective:
- Your customers will download your app
- Customers prefer apps to websites for everything they do
- Tablets are dying
- Apps are the most important part of a company’s mobile portfolio
 Nicole Dvorak, Forrester data analyst

An in-store app can be a pain killer, helping customers get around the store and find things, or a vitamin, providing more information about products.
Justin Toupin, Walmart director of mobile products and strategies

Are you using your own app on a regular basis? If not, rethink it. Check reviews. Read them all and feed them back to your development team.
Jonathan Pelosi, Google head of industry and mobile apps

Consumers on mobile phones want things immediately and in context - to get in, get something done and get out. 

Mobile users want to be able to complete a task (like booking a flight) while stopped at a red light.

Apps must perform technically, be a destination (the only place to go for something) and have mechanics for repeat, continuous engagement.

Marketers have to think how to engage with customers where they are and not make customers do work.

An app is not a strategy.
Julie Ask, Forrester VP, principal analyst

Do you have thoughts around these topics you’d like to share?


Email Engagement Increases 12.7% in Q1 2016

Monday, May 09, 2016 Listrak 0 Comments

Are you looking to improve the performance of your email marketing campaigns? You must begin by understanding how your current campaigns measure up in order to identify areas of improvement. If you are going to IRCE in June, our strategists can sit down with you to review your company’s email metrics and how they compare to your industry benchmarks.

We collected open rates, click to open rates, conversion rates and average revenue per email statistics for 950 of our retail clients and reported on the average metrics across the board from January – March 2016.

Average Open Rate by Campaign

Results show that customers have been engaging more with emails in the first quarter of 2016 as the average open rate has increased 12.7% over last year. This is great news for retailers!

Marketing messages, which include broadcast or batch and blast messages as well as Listrak’s highly personalized Recurring Automated Campaigns, had similar open rates at 12.6% and 12.9%, respectively.

Triggered messages, including Welcome, Browse Abandonment, Cart Abandonment and Back in Stock Alerts, had the highest open rates at 37.2%, 27.4%, 29.9%, and 47.6%, respectively.

Loyalty-based triggered messages, including Post Purchase Loyalty, Replenishment and LifeCycle Winback, came in at 25.2%, 10.6% and 20.8%, respectively.

The 12.7% overall increase proves that email is still the preferred communication method between retailers and shoppers.

Average Click to Open Rate by Campaign

The engagement doesn’t stop at just opening messages – shoppers are clicking through emails as well.

Broadcast and Recurring Automated Campaigns are sent to much larger audiences. If you aren’t segmenting these messages, your entire list will receive the email. This explains why the Click-to-Open rates for these messages – 16.7% and 10% respectively – are so much lower than the triggered campaigns.

That also explains why Replenishment, which is sent to a very small audience, has such a high Click-to-Open rate at 53.6%. If you sell consumable merchandise, such as skincare, you should consider adding a Replenishment campaign to your email mix.

Other triggered campaigns had the following Click-to-Open rates in Q1 2016: Welcome 38%, Browse Abandonment 43.9%, Shopping Cart Abandonment 46.9%, Back in Stock Alerts 36.3%, Post Purchase Loyalty 29.2%, and LifeCycle Winback 22.9%.

It is important to point out that the LifeCycle Winback – which are sent to shoppers who have previously purchased but who haven’t been engaging with your messages recently – are re-engaging nearly a quarter of the recipients who receive these messages. We recently published an article on the best way to reach these shoppers, which you can read here.

Average Conversion Rate by Campaign

It shouldn’t be a surprise to see Back in Stock Alerts topping the conversion rate chart. Customers specifically asked to be notified when a product they wanted to buy was available for purchase, and these emails drive a ton of revenue with a 26.3% conversion rate.

What might be a surprise, though, is the fact that Browse Abandonment messages have nearly a 20% higher conversion rate than broadcast messages. At 5%, Browse Abandonment messages convert a quarter as many shoppers as Shopping Cart Abandonment campaigns, on average.

This makes a strong case for Browse Abandonment campaigns. Shoppers are finding these messages useful. And, because they are sent to so many more shoppers than the cart abandonment messages – and the shoppers haven’t shown the same purchase intent – it proves that targeted and relevant messages based on the shopper’s online behavior helps customers through the shopping journey. If you aren’t already sending Browse Abandonment messages, now is the time to add these campaigns. It is a perfect holiday strategy that will definitely move the needle.

Average conversion rates for the other campaigns for Q1: broadcast 4.3%, Recurring Automated Campaigns 3.1%, Welcome 9.3%, Post Purchase Loyalty 11.4%, Replenishment 4.6% and LifeCycle Winback 1.5%. 

Average Revenue per Email

Browse Abandonment continues to prove its value in this chart. It returns $.61 per email, on average, which is ten times higher than broadcast messages. Remember, these emails go out to shoppers who have browsed your site but didn’t purchase or add anything to their carts. The messages are highly relevant because they are based on each customer’s onsite behavior and shoppers respond to these campaigns.

Likewise, Shopping Cart Abandonment messages and Back in Stock Alerts continue to dominate, bringing in $3.04 and $3.99 per email, respectively.

Average revenue per email benchmarks for the other campaigns for Q1: broadcast $.06, Recurring Automated Campaigns $.09, Welcome $2.82, Post Purchase Loyalty $.86, Replenishment $.56 and LifeCycle Winback $.05. 


Chronic Email Non-Openers: Tips for Re-Engaging before it’s too Late

Monday, May 02, 2016 Listrak 0 Comments

by Karen DiClemente, Director of Strategy Services

Many retailers are constantly challenged by the growing number of inactive email addresses on their lists. The never-ending debate around removing these email addresses is still a popular one.

Research from Econsultancy shows that an average of 61% of email customer databases are “inactive.” That means that nearly 2/3 of your subscribers haven’t opened a single message from you in months. This is a really big deal – and its impact can be felt across multiple areas of your business:
  • Lost potential revenue
  • Inefficiencies / reduced ROI
  • Cloudy metrics
  • Potential deliverability issues

With that many subscribers lying dormant, it is important for you to reactivate as many of them as you can while also focusing on your active subscribers to be sure they don’t lapse. And we’ll get to how to do this in just a minute. But there may come a time when it makes more sense to remove or suppress the ones you can’t re-engage completely.

Defining inactive
I can hear the protests raised by my last sentence – and, believe me, I understand. You worked hard and spent a lot of money to acquire those email addresses and you don’t want to give up on them. Clearly there is a chance that they might open an email someday, right? They subscribed to your list for a reason and they asked you to stay in touch.

And those are all great points. It is difficult to cut people loose after all of the time and effort you spent acquiring their email addresses, nurturing them and attempting to re-engage them. But there comes a point where it makes better business sense to remove them.

To determine the correct way to handle inactives, you must start by defining what an inactive means to your business. Many retailers define this segment as any subscriber who has not opened, browsed or purchased within a given period of time frame. This time frame usually ranges from three months to one year.

That’s a broad definition and in order to accurately define your audience, you must break it down further. While it is important to identify all of those segments so you can send targeted messages to get them to click and buy, it is equally important to handle the non-openers differently. This is the chronic non-opener segment of your list and the ones that require extra attention as they are the ones that can damage your sending reputation.

Don’t wait until it’s too late
The best way to deal with chronic non-openers is to prevent as many subscribers as you can from lapsing. The easiest thing you can do is give your audience more than one opportunity to open a message. At Listrak, we call this Multipass. You can automatically schedule an email to be sent to non-openers at predetermined times and you can even change the subject line. This shouldn’t be used on every message you send and you must carefully plan the timing of these messages to work with your overall email schedule, but it is an easy way to resend your most important messages to your audience. Sometimes, a different subject line or deployment time is all it takes to reactivate a non-opener.

Chronic non-openers, however, need more than that to re-engage them. After all, we’re talking about the people who haven’t opened in weeks or months. Here are four strategic tips to help you prevent subscribers from lapsing:

Make re-engagement a priority and reactive as early as possible
Begin re-engagement campaigns at 30 days and continue at 60, 90, 180 day intervals. These re-engagement messages don’t have to be complex to work. You can simply change the subject line and header message to make the messages relevant to different segments. For example, the email on the left can be sent to subscribers who haven’t opened a message in 30 day using the subject line “Don’t miss out – 10% off coupon inside!” while the message on the right can be sent to subscribers who haven’t opened in 90 days using the subject line “Come back and get 10% off your next order.”

By prioritizing lapsing subscribers and giving them the extra attention that they need, you will prevent a portion of your audience from falling into this segment. A 2014 study by Return Path (based on 33 brands who implemented reactivation campaigns) saw open rates increase by 13%, with 75% of the reactivated subscribers continuing to open emails after 89 days and 25% up to 300 days later.

Send personalized messages to ensure relevance
The more personal these re-engagement messages can be, the better they’ll work. Try including personal recommendations based on the products the subscribers previously browsed or purchased. Even if it has been several months since their last site visit, showing new merchandise in the same category they viewed or purchased makes these messages relevant.

You can also segment your audience and send targeted messages to each group. For example, Boden sends the message on the left to people who haven’t clicked in a while and it sends the message on the right to subscribers who haven’t opened in a while.

Automate your reactivation programs
It’s important to send an automated series of emails over a period of time with messaging showing that you miss and care about the customer’s engagement or business.

We have seen clients successful with a 4-6 message series sent over a period of 30 days to anyone who hasn’t opened an email within 6 months. During the period of time when subscribers are receiving the series, it’s important that these subscribers are excluded from your regular marketing messages so these reactivation emails stand out.

One client sends a four message series to subscribers who haven’t opened in four months, highlighting the fact that it’s been a while since they heard from them and asking if they want to unsubscribe. The message also offers a 20% discount code in order to entice shoppers back to the site.

The same message is sent out each time but the subject lines change:

Message one – triggered to be sent to subscribers who haven’t opened in four months
Subject line “Hey, remember us?”

Message two – triggered 10 days later if message one isn’t opened
Subject line “You’re missing out”

Message three – triggered 10 days later if message two isn’t opened
Subject line “Don’t open this email”

Message four – triggered 10 days later if message three isn’t opened
Subject line “Should we stay or should we go?”

When sending to chronic non-openers, it is okay to be creative with your subject lines. You’re sending to people who aren’t engaged and you have nothing to lose at this point. Stay on brand, but try not to use generic subject lines, such as “20% off today only”. Even though you are offering a great deal, the subject line probably won’t stand out in an inbox. Try playing on their emotions and use language that suggests they are about to be removed from your list.

We published a case study proving how personal product recommendations can re-engage subscribers and get them to purchase – even the chronic non-openers who haven’t engaged in over a year. You can read that case study here.

If that doesn’t work, can I try something else?
The fact that you have the email address for these chronic non-openers provides a number of additional remarketing opportunities. Email is the universal identifier and, as such, you can target these shoppers across multiple channels.

Custom Audiences
Leverage custom audiences (Facebook Custom Audiences, Google Customer Match, Twitter Audience Manager, etc.) to re-engage your inactive segments. To ensure success, you’ll want to export a list of your inactives and retarget them using similar content, especially if the reactivation emails contain key messages about promotions or offers.

Display/Paid Media
You can also try to reactivate chronic non-openers in display/paid media channels. To do this, you simply provide a list of your inactive customers to a data onboarding company, which then passes through to your DMP/DSP to execute paid media buys to target these consumers with display ads. This is all in an effort to encourage customers to return and engage with you!

In the mobile channel, marketers can engage via several methods to reactivate their users. They can do push notifications or in-app messages, or they can use in-app email to drive re-engagement.

What can I expect?
Taking the time to actively pursue your chronic non-openers is worth it. You’ll not only get a boost in opens and clicks, but sales, too. But even the ones who don’t re-engage with your brand add value. The fact that you can identify them makes it easier for you to suppress them from future sends. This not only protects your reputation but also provides a much better and more accurate view of your campaign performance. Right now, your metrics included the large portion of your list who aren’t engaged. By removing that segment and only sending to subscribers who are active, you’ll have better overall results.

Questions? Let me know in the comments section.