The sports gear and apparel retailer uses Bluecore to immediately notify shoppers when a price on an item they are interested in has dropped.

Nathan Decker, director of e-commerce at sports gear and apparel retailer Evo, was spending way too much time tending to administrative tasks at his business. As an executive at the company, he needed to free up his plate to focus more on the bigger picture.

In an effort to automate and generate more ROI from email, Decker turned to retail marketing vendor Bluecore. Bluecore sends triggered emails after customers take an action, such as abandoning a cart or looking at an item but not purchasing it.

“Before we began leveraging Bluecore’s automation capabilities, I personally touched every email that went out,” Decker says. “Each [email] segment and each message was created manually. The timing of a message was often very out of sync with consumer intent. Early digital marketing, prior to the advent of automation, was similar to sophisticated direct marketing without print costs.”

Specifically, implementing Bluecore has improved the timeliness of Evo’s price-drop emails, Decker says. At any given time, Evo might have 15,000 products for sale on its site, each with a different price that may change multiple times throughout the day. Meanwhile, the merchant has thousands of site visitors who engage with these products daily.

Prior to automation, when the price of an item dropped there was no practical way to communicate to a customer with specific interest in that product that the price was lower. With Bluecore, when a price drops for an item in which a customer has shown interest by browsing the item or placing it in his shopping cart, Evo automatically sends an email alert to the shopper with the product he looked at, informing him of the change in price.

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Bluecore creates a custom JavaScript file that sits on Evo.com’s site that collects all customer behavior. It then uses cookies to match site visitors to Evo’s existing email list. Each cookie is a small file that holds data about a specific consumer such as her name. Evo uses these cookies to match site visitors to emails in its email list. It picks up additional customer emails when someone clicks through a promotional email to the Evo site. Evo sends a shopper a price-decrease email when there’s a drop in price for a product that a shopper has viewed but not purchased in the last 90 days, Decker says.

In tests during the fist six months of implementing Bluecore, shoppers who received triggered messages from Bluecore consistently generated 15-20% more revenue than those who did not receive such messages, Decker says.

“The process of matching interested customers to items that have fresh price drops happens hundreds or thousands of times every day,” Decker says. “Through Bluecore, this happens while we sleep, while we are in a meeting, without any active management.”

Evo is No. 714 in the Internet Retailer Top 1000.

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