1-800-Flowers Streamlines Web Presence

1-800-Flowers continues to record solid top and bottom line growth with total revenues for the quarter ended December 29, 2013 up 6% across all three of its business segments. This growth was achieved despite the headwinds of the year-end holiday season, including the impact of the federal government shutdown in October and the calendar shift that resulted in six fewer shopping days between Thanksgiving and Christmas. On the tails of its positive earnings, the retailer continues to invest in its multi-channel brands, including the migration of its five sites to one WebSphere Commerce platform, focusing on e-commerce growth, growing its enterprise customer database and streamlining operations.
Currently in the process of migrating its multiple sites to the WebSphere Commerce platform, 1-800-Flowers has converted two of its brands to various versions of the platform and migration of the remaining sites will continue after Valentine's Day. "We'll do a little bit more as we move into the spring holidays but by the summer and by the end of our fiscal year, we expect to be complete and have all sites on the latest version of our new platform and then we'll be able to move forward from there," said Christopher McCann, president and director of 1-800-Flowers.
On the pure technology aspect of the migration, it's still early. But what the retailer has done so far continues to show good progress and positive metrics. "We continue to see as we move the sites onto the single platform that we gain development leverage," continued McCann. "We are also able to drive some increasing conversion rates. We're driving increase of exposure of our food brands to the national, to the prominent traffic that 1-800-Flowers has. What we're seeing is over time we are increasing our relevancy with our customer base for all of their gifting occasions."
The retailer's multichannel go-to-market strategy continues to include retail and wholesale, but focuses on e-commerce with the evolution of social and mobile commerce. Investments have been made in a multibrand platform and enterprise customer database, along with new tools designed to help enhance personalization for all marketing messages online, on the phone and in stores.
Additionally, the retailer is looking to grow its brands across multiple channels and streamline its operational processes. "We have the operational issues behind us both in the warehouse and distribution end that we talked about the last year, as well as in the operation and the factory, and we're looking to put more throughput through there," said McCann.
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