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Author: Bernard Luthi

Bernard Luthi

Bernard Luthi is a 15-year veteran of e-commerce, technology and consumer electronics. As CMO and COO, Bernard leads Rakuten.com Shopping’s marketing initiatives, including web site experience, advertising, BuyTV, public relations and promotions. In addition, he works closely with Rakuten Inc. on overall corporate branding.

Prior to Rakuten.com Shopping, Bernard was Vice President of Marketing for e-retailer Newegg.com, where he oversaw the comprehensive marketing strategy for the company, as well as directed web management and customer services. In addition to his work at Newegg, Bernard was Vice President of Marketing at PC Mall, a leading direct marketer for B2B computer solutions and sales.

Prior to these posts, Bernard held Director and Senior Group Manager positions in product marketing, partner programs and reseller marketing during his decade tenure at Ingram Micro, the world’s leading global technology distributor.

Bringing the in-store Christmas shopping experience online

The weeks running up to Christmas Day are some of the busiest of the year for retailers, counting for a huge proportion of total annual sales.

This year, however, the US is expected to see a slight downturn in spending per family during the holiday season due to lingering uncertainty after the recent government shutdown.

On average, shoppers will spend $737.95 on presents, decorations and food for the festive season, which is about 2% less than 2012 according to the National Retail Federation.

With this year’s festive season presenting retailers with a bit of a challenge, it is also providing them a great opportunity to build real and lasting brand value and to win over such a precious customer base.


Retailers must switch on to the discovery channel

It’s an empowering time for online retailers. Thanks to sites like Pinterest and Curisma, retailers know more about what their consumers are demanding than ever before. 

Two thousand years ago, Romans would make a shopping list by scratching the name of items they needed into a thin layer of wax on a wooden tablet.

Today, it’s a new generation of tablets that are playing an increasingly vital role in the retail journey, reviving a retail pattern that has long dominated the offline shopping experience: discovery shopping! 


Where there are empowered merchants, there are satisfied shoppers

The notion of prioritizing the vendor makes many ecommerce marketers cringe.

How can you prioritize your merchants, provide them with benefits and opportunities to be successful while making sure your shoppers don’t desert you for the attention of another company?

But, customer service innovation has begun to see important and measurable results in flipping the customer-centric model on its head to not only win over more customers, but delight and engage the ones you have today. 

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Loyal customers are key to online growth

Consumers can buy almost anything online from groceries to holidays, gadgets to clothing, even cars.

Ecommerce today is exciting, innovative, and profitable: last year U.S. shoppers made internet history when Cyber Monday sales topped a record-breaking $1.5bn in online sales.

According to comScore, it was the biggest spending day in U.S. ecommerce history.

But one of the cornerstones of retail, be it online or in physical stores, has always been turning one-time shoppers into regular customers. What's the best way to do that?