Skin in the game

Published 17 May 2012 05:06, Updated 17 May 2012 10:18

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Skin in the game

A reminder that multi channel goes both ways and that it is an important strategy to get closer to the customer

The Body Shop reminded the judges that multi channel retailing isn’t just about being online – it was its home parties that won the panel over. So it is fitting to know that the retailer began multi-channel retailing in Australia in 1988 with a mail order service, when customers who couldn’t get to the stores asked for a catalogue.

“People who lived in remote locations wanted to be able to engage and buy products, so mail order was born out of the back of a shop,” the company’s chief executive, Mark Kindness, pictured, says.

They are still buying the vitamin-e skin care, bubble baths and white musk perfume they were buying then, albeit with some modifications to incorporate newer technologies and styles.

The company’s multi-channel approach to retailing – selling from bricks and mortar stores, online and through parties in people’s homes – enables it to build relationships with customers at home before pulling them through to the shop

The variety of channels is also key in the company’s growth projections. The Body Shop hopes to triple at-home sales by 2016, increasing online sales to meet or better the combined revenue of its top three bricks and mortar stores by 2016. It plans to go from 88 stores to more than 100 in the same period.

The company is contemplating another channel – social media but for now it’s more about the brand and engaging with customers.

Judges verdict: A reminder that multi channel goes both ways and that it is an important strategy to get closer to the customer.

To see the other winners:

The Body Shop (Multi Channel Retailer of the Year)

Woolworths (Sustainable Retailer of the Year)

Bankwest (Successful Retail Marketing Campaign of the Year)

Dan Murphy’s (Outstanding Retailer of the Year)

Aussie Farmers (Best Customer Experience)

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