IBM helps analyze big data to grow daily sales 10 times

Leading online retailer offers a personalized shopping experience to Chinese consumers - 31 percent last shopped online, finds IBM survey

BEIJING, May 24, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced that, one of China's leading online retailers of overseas luxury brands, grew its daily sales by 10 times using IBM software for Smarter Commerce to analyze Big Data, offering customers a personalized shopping experience and increased product selection.

IBM customized a solution for that provides the online retailer a centralized, real-time view of customer and product data from across the company. With the new platform, can analyze data to provide its customers with customized interactions based on their habits and preferences.

"IBM Smarter Commerce technology helped drive unprecedented growth in our customer base as well as the diversity of products we offer the millions of shoppers we are now able to serve," said Wei Wenqi, Vice President of Technology at "Our growth is a direct result of improving the effectiveness of our supply chain while also transforming our customer experience with Big Data insights informing how we market to, attract and retain our valued shoppers." can now collect and analyze significant amounts of data that show how traffic is coming to, which referral sources bring the most profitable customers as well as insights around customer behaviors while shopping. These Big Data insights allow to customize the shopping experience for each of its customers, helping to drive increased customer loyalty, satisfaction and spend. The company now uses this data as the basis for its ongoing marketing strategy, enabling much smarter and highly targeted customer outreach campaigns.

Working with IBM, improved its sales platforms to better handle its growing popularity. By fully integrating its front-end systems with the company's back-end technology and operations, optimized its supply chain. As a result, the company now has the capability to offer customers up to 5 million products to choose from at one time and sales volume grew from 10,000 items sold in one day to 100,000.

The market opportunity for in China is significant. IBM's 2013 survey of some 26,000 consumers from 14 countries shows that 31 percent of Chinese respondents last bought online compared to 14 percent worldwide. In fact, in nearly every response, the survey's Chinese respondents showed a much higher inclination to shop online than their global counterparts. Twenty-six percent of China's respondents are unsure whether they would next shop at a store or online, and 32 percent are ready to commit to online.

"Chinese consumers are very digitally connected and much more inclined than shoppers in other countries to go online for their next purchase, and that is a unique opportunity for Chinese retailers," says Craig Stevenson , Executive Director, Retail Industry, IBM Greater China Group. "IBM's work with is a great example of how retailers can use Big Data technologies to take advantage of the fast-paced transition to online shopping. Using data to understand individual customer behavior helps retailers ensure that a positive customer experience isn't something online shoppers choose to leave at the store."

The IBM study also documents the emergence of "showrooming," a growing trend in which consumers browse goods at a store, but ultimately buy them online. While showroomers accounted for only 6 percent of all shoppers globally, China has the highest incidence of showrooming in the world at 24 percent.


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