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#1.01: The “Drive Consumers to Retail” Issue

1 > Be Handy: Drive to retail through manufacturer site
2 > Lead the Way: Low-cost, ready-made dealer locator
3 > Drive Sales: Entice them into your store

1 > Be Handy: Drive to retail through manufacturer site

Power tool manufacturer DeWalt embarked on a mission to get better acquainted with their end customers, encouraging increased purchasing, without alienating their channel partners. DeWalt segmented their customer base into three areas, and designed three distinct micro Web sites to target each segment. Each site contains interactive content, enabling DeWalt to learn about visitors’ wants and needs, and to drive sales by connecting visitors with retailers through links on the site. These interactive Web sites, in conjunction with various offline events, are used to collect information about individual shoppers. The information is then used to create personalized emails to prospects and customers promoting relevant deals and special offers of interest. DeWalt doubled site traffic since last July, attracting more than one million potential customers who spent an average of 12 minutes on the site.

The lesson: With a little attention paid to customer behavior and preferences, manufacturers can use the Web to drive their customers to retail stores, even if the retailers aren’t doing the marketing.

Source: 1 to 1, September 2001

2 > Lead the Way: Low-cost, ready-made dealer locator

Before investing time and money into building a dealer locator function into your Web site, check out ready-to-go, pre-made solutions. For example, MapQuest, an online provider of mapping and driving directions, offers an interactive mapping tool allowing visitors to your site to search for the most conveniently located retail stores, as well as their store hours, contact information, and accepted methods of payment. The service offers interactive mapping, proximity searching, database interface, and customizable page design, and starts at $4,500 depending on desired level of service. The service can be built to fit your budget, and will serve to capture customers and drive their business into your stores.

The lesson: There are tools out there that are already built, tested, and available for private label use on commercial sites. They are your best resource in simplifying the process for customers in finding your products and making the purchase.

Source: MapQuest

3 > Drive Sales Home: Entice them into your store

Approximately 20% of Volvo dealerships have already enrolled in a direct mail and email program intended to increase aftermarket sales. The goal is to encourage car owners to stop by dealerships for parts and services not included in their warranties. Though these services are generally provided by specialty auto shops, Volvo wants to drive car owners back to the dealerships where they will actually smell the leather, see new models, and realize an upgrade is a reasonable option. Through this initiative, a dealer with an excess of tire supplies, for example can customize a special offer message only for drivers with tires at least a certain number of years old. Customers are therefore receiving exclusive offers targeting their needs, and it is this customization that is expected to drive the aftermarket sales.

The lesson: Email marketing can be a useful tool to drive sales both online and off. Consider the power of emarketing to put you face to face with your customers.

Source: Direct, October 2001

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