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SP Online Shopping Lilly2By Jay Henderson

We all knew it was coming eventually and IBM predicted it would happen this year as it indeed did – more Thanksgiving shoppers turned to their mobile devices than their desktops to browse through all of the Thanksgiving deals.

Specifically, from IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark  we saw 52.1 percent of traffic on Thanksgiving coming from mobile devices, a 22 percent jump from last year. Even more incredibly, if you go back to 2010 only 6.5 percent of traffic came from mobile. That is an eight-fold increase in traffic over only four years.

With regard to sales, mobile devices accounted for 32.3 percent, which percentage-wise was an even greater year-over-year increase at 25.4 percent than the observed increase in mobile traffic. Continue Reading »

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Shanker Ramamurthy, Global Managing Partner, IBM Global Business Services

Shanker Ramamurthy, Global Managing Partner, IBM Global Business Services

By Shanker Ramamurthy

In an era that is highly digitized, there’s no shortage of data for organizations to consume and leverage. But, while speed-to-action should be a given, it’s only recently that the value driver for Big Data has shifted from volume and variety to velocity and veracity.

Capabilities that enable an organization to consume data faster – to move from raw data to insight-driven actions – are now the key differentiator for organizations investing in data and analytics.

According to “Analytics: The Speed Advantage,” a new study completed by the IBM Institute for Business Value (IBV), 74 percent of global businesses and IT professionals anticipate the speed at which business executives expect new, data-driven insights will continue to accelerate. Continue Reading »

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Robert Griffin, Vice President, Industry Solutions, IBM

Robert Griffin, Vice President, Counter Fraud Solutions, IBM

By Robert Griffin

“Fraud is a normal cost of doing business.”

Any organization that subscribes to this long-standing mantra needs to rethink their priorities. With 2.5 billion gigabytes of data created every day, fraud is taking on a new face in the Big Data world.

According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), organizations forfeit five percent of annual revenue to fraud, which by conservative estimates amounts to more than $3.5 trillion lost each year to global fraud and financial crimes. Fraudulent activity has grown in scope, volume and complexity, with the brash sophistication of recent attacks — and magnitude of damage, both to the brand and bottom line — elevating the anti-fraud conversation from acceptable loss to C-Suite imperative.

Today’s generation of organized and digitally-savvy criminals are using the same technologies that deliver efficiency to business and convenience to consumers — such as mobile devices, social networks and cloud platforms — to constantly probe for vulnerabilities and weaknesses. The pace of this threat continues to accelerate. Identity fraud impacted more than 12 million individuals in 2012, resulting in theft of nearly $21 billion, and each day the U.S. healthcare industry loses $650 million due to fraudulent claims and payments. Continue Reading »

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Paul Papas, Global Leader, Smarter Commerce, IBM Global Business Services

Paul Papas, Global Leader, Smarter Commerce, IBM Global Business Services

By Paul Papas

The swipe of a finger is all that it takes – to lose a customer to a competitor – forever.

In today’s digitally-driven economy, the reality is that consumers hold unprecedented levels of power to make or a break a business. Social technologies have amplified the voice of the customer to broadcast every positive or negative experience to everyone, everywhere.

As such, it is critical for businesses today to focus on engaging customers with exceptional experiences each and every time they interact. And businesses must do this seamlessly and consistently across all digital and physical touch points.

While many know that customer experience has become a powerful differentiator for organizations, the majority of businesses are only at the brink of shifting their strategies in order to keep up. The majority of CEOs (63 percent) polled in IBM’s recent C-suite Study said that their organizations still do not have an integrated physical and mobile strategy for customer engagement. Continue Reading »

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November 20th, 2013
8:00
 

John Mason, General Manager, Midmarket Business, IBM

John Mason, General Manager, Midmarket Business, IBM

By John Mason

It takes a lot more than a good idea and a solid investment to succeed as a small or medium-size business today.  It takes what psychologist, Urie Bronfenbrenner, described as a network of systems.

Bronfenbrenner introduced the idea of the microsystem, mesosystem, and exosystem, in his ground-breaking theory, The Ecology of Human Development, in 1979, and explained how each of these interconnected systems helps shape the individual. 

As in society, the various parts of this ecology can be applied to SMBs to better understand their growth and development. Continue Reading »

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Peter Korsten, Global Leader, IBM Thought Leadership

Peter Korsten, Global Leader, IBM Thought Leadership

By Peter Korsten

Customers today wield unprecedented power. Digital tools and an abundance of information allow the modern customer to expect incredible levels of personalization and individualized service. This power is completely transforming entire industries – including fashion, retail, media and entertainment and healthcare.

Companies have long used activities like customer focus groups to figure out how to sell customers what they wanted to offer. This one-way, nonreciprocal relationship will no longer fly. Enterprises can only succeed if they understand and provide what their customers want.

The C-suite is getting the message, judging by a new IBM study conducted by the IBM Institute for Business Value – a study which is based on face-to-face conversations with more than 4,000 CEOs, CMOs, CFOs, CIOs, CHROs and CSCOs and across 70 countries and 20 industries. According to the study, more than half of C-suite leaders surveyed said customers now have a considerable influence on their enterprises. Continue Reading »

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David Rogers, Faculty Director of Digital Marketing Strategy, Columbia University

David Rogers, Faculty Director, Digital Marketing Strategy, Columbia Business School

By David Rogers

Ever since the rise of online shopping sites like Amazon.com, brick-and-mortar-retail stores haved struggled with the threat of “showrooming” consumers – those who visit a store to see a product in person, but then opt to purchase it later online.

With the rapid adoption of smartphones, this phenomenon has grown even stronger. Today retailers operate in a world in which in-store shoppers have every competing offer in the palm of her hands.

Though retailers are not powerless, to survive, it is critical that they understand the true impact of mobile devices on shopper behavior. Doing so will enable them to shape a retail experience that gives consumers a compelling reason to buy directly from the brick-and-mortar store. Continue Reading »

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Michael Haydock, IBM Data Scientist, Global Business Services

Michael Haydock, IBM Data Scientist, Global Business Services

By Michael Haydock

It’s early August, but back-to-school shopping is already in full swing. In fact, in some cases, it has been for a while. Retailers like Walmart began advertising before summer vacation even began in hopes of capturing consumer dollars in the face of economic uncertainty.

According to IBM’s new Big Data-based forecast, such moves led to strong growth in July.  For example, children’s, juniors and other clothing segments were projected to be up over 12 percent, year over year, in July. Spending on this category is expected to dip down to just 1.4 percent in August before returning to a 12.3 percent growth rate in September. (That’s because students typically like to wait and see what their friends are wearing before completing their back-to-school wardrobes.) Continue Reading »

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John Mason, General Manager, Midmarket Business, IBM

John Mason, General Manager, Midmarket Business, IBM

By John Mason

Gone are the days when a company launched in its home market and then waited 10 years before expanding overseas.

Today, many entrepreneurs think globally from the start. What is driving this change and what does it mean for start-ups and the investors that back them?

For starters, consider the 6.8 billion mobile subscriptions worldwide. Many of these are in emerging markets where users are often connecting to the internet for the very first time via a mobile device. Next, think about the explosive growth of cloud computing, where data generated from these devices through transactions, interactions and social networking can be collected, collated, analyzed and exploited. For the first time ever, there exists a massive global communications platform, providing tremendous reach for even the most modest of companies wishing to expand their horizons – literally. Continue Reading »

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July 22nd, 2013
0:38
 

Beverly Macy, author

Beverly Macy, author

By Beverly Macy

As we look forward, one thing is clear –social business is no longer optional. From driving innovation, to providing essential client experiences, to enabling a dynamic and productive workforce, organizations are realizing they need to craft a social business strategy.

Even companies that have committed to using social technologies realize they are just scratching the surface in terms of the power of social business to transform the employee experience and the client/partner experience. They see the potential of tapping big data and turning that information into intelligence, so it’s easy to see why there’s a surge in innovation and new levels of productivity and creativity within the enterprise.

Here are three areas of focus to keep an eye on in the coming months:

Continue Reading »

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