Takeaways from the Internet Retailing Conference 2015 for the Smaller Retailer (episode 020)

This week we’re doing something a little different.

Instead of an interview with an eCommerce business person I’m bringing you a hot-off-the-press update from the Internet Retailing Conference 2015 which I attended in London last Wednesday.

For those of you not familiar with Internet Retailing and their conference let me explain a bit about it. It’s a one-day conference that this year celebrates their 10th anniversary. It is the number one place in the UK to find out what the big players are up to in eCommerce, and sees 1,000 people attend – most of whom are also working for top 500 retailers.

internet retailing conference london 2015

Speakers included Twitter, Facebook, Google, and eBay (of course!) and many big impressive UK eCommerce businesses:

  • In the online only area we had Boohoo.com (even faster fashion than ASOS), Shop Direct (that’s the Littlewoods and Very brands), PetsPyjamas, farfetch.com, ghd
  • Multichannel and high street included Marketing and Spencers, New Look, Jigsaw, Fortnum and Mason, John Lewis, House of Fraser

Some of you may be thinking – great loads of massive enterprise-level businesses, I thought Chloe’s focus was on us smaller players?

And you’re right – for the majority of my listeners this is not a conference you should be planning on attending (not because the content isn’t awesome, but because for your time out of the office there are other events more suited to your needs – you don’t need to there for a discussion on what skills sets needed by the board of directors of a top 100 ecommerce business).

That’s where me and this podcast comes in. I’ve looked through all my notes, conversations, stand information and the rest(!) and summarised it down into what the smaller retailer can take from the conference.

customers are now omnipresent gods

Click to tweet: “Choosing what not to do is more important than what to do in retail” @eComMasterPlanThis is no simple conference review

This is my distillation of the key themes and takeaways to bring you (the smaller ecommerce business person) the ideas that will help you with your business over the coming year.

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My overall feelings after the conference were that it’s great to see the ‘big boys’ dealing with exactly the same issues as the rest of us. Personaly it means I’m giving out the right guideance!! But more importantly it feels like reassuarance that the whole industry is headed in the right direction, we’re growing up – and that is going to make life a lot easier.

What surprised me about the conference was that there was very little talk of bright shiny objects – those distracting it-will-solve-all-problems pieces of tech. They didn’t seem to exist either in the sessions, or the exhibitors hall. So the majority of the content I’ll be sharing with you in the rest of this podcast is all about how you go about doing things, and the headline projects you should focus on.

As ever if you have any questions about this or would like to discuss in more details – just get in contact with me

Areas covered:

Shop Direct’s marvellous approach to “focus” in every area of the business.

patrick bousquet-chavanne internet retailing 2015

Patrick Bouquet-Chavanne’s “Trifecta”

  • Those who merge these 3 well will be the most successful retailers over the coming decade:
    • Consumers are in the driving seat
    • Brand is at the heart of differentiation (which means content)
    • Techonological opportunities

Key Theme: Brand and Content

  • including information from Marks and Spencer, Twitter, BooHoo and more

Key Theme: Innovation, Technology, Testing and Improving the Customer Experience

  • including information from Monetate, Marks and Spencer, House of Fraser, Shop Direct

Monetate’s 5 Step Pathway to Personalisation

  1. Test – simple A/B split testing
  2. Basic Targeting – based on what happens in the session itself
  3. Visitor Segmentation – using all your data, and 3rd party data
  4. Synchronisation – total cross-channel synchronisation
  5. 1:1 – only Amazon and Google are anywhere close to achiving this


  1. Focus
  2. Get your team, culture, and values all aligned for a faster approach to success
  3. Personalisation and testing advice
  4. Everyone is using NPS – Net Promoter Score. A simple way to measure customer satisfaction. Add it to your to do list for 2016.

Key links:

And Chloë’s latest eBook “How to Get New Customers to Your Website” is now available to download for FREE right here