Gordmans implements gRewards leveraging Epicor Retail CRM

Established in the Midwest in the early 1900s, Gordmans flourished as a family owned and operated retail establishment by constantly improving upon the status quo. Now a public company, Gordmans boasts 93 stores across 19 states. They offer an easy-to-shop layout, vibrant signage, graphics, and a huge selection of brand-name fashions at incredible savings. The company's mission is: "To delight our guests with big savings, big selection, and fun, friendly associates."

"The rewards component that Epicor established far exceeded anticipated pilot milestones and metrics. The company says it can now identify their best shoppers, connect with them to drive guest advocacy, pinpoint buying habits, and personalize the approaches to variouscustomer segments."

Stefan Fennes
Professional Services Manager - Epicor Retail | Gordmans

An Epicor customer since 2006, Gordmans was interested in strengthening their CRM capabilities by rolling out a loyalty program to better connect with and retain its patrons. To address this need, they chose to implement Epicor Retail CRM, a best-of-breed software solution that captures, analyzes, and applies customer information to improve engagement, marketing, sales, and related business processes. Gordmans also engaged the Epicor Retail CRM Client Services team to design a tailored, integrated program to increase transactions and guest involvement. With assistance from Epicor, Gordmans launched the gRewards loyalty program, which quickly generated results that met or exceeded expectations.

Discovering the Gordmans shopper

Using Epicor Retail CRM, Gordmans established a highly efficient system for collecting customer data, which they are analyzing and segmenting to uncover patterns around which they can continue to build their loyalty program. To do this, the retailer relies on Epicor to provide the tools and expertise to manage their customer-centric processes. Epicor consultants have helped Gordmans develop a customized rewards program to take advantage of key trends and insights identified using the Epicor CRM application.

The Epicor team reviewed a sampling of guest demographic data and transaction history. Based on that content, they were able to build profiles of the key customer groups. This analysis helped Gordmans refine its view of the guest and its understanding of the relative contribution of each segment based on transaction frequency and annual spend. Quantifying the size of each customer segment highlighted its importance to the business as a whole.

Designing a winning loyalty program

With this information in hand, Epicor projected a range of sales benefits they anticipated the program to achieve. Epicor then undertook a competitive market study to determine the structure and benefits of other loyalty programs in the Every Day Low Price(EDLP) space. Pilot program objectives involved replacing in-store coupons with gRewards, providing a richer, deeper level of customer engagement, and creating customized, timely promotions to drive in-store traffic and comparative store sales.

All these objectives informed the design of the program. "The key to building a results-oriented loyalty program is to understand completely the incremental opportunities you can derive from increasing key variables," said Stefan Fennes, CRM Professional Services Manager, Epicor Retail. "You can't fully determine the rewards and incentives of a loyalty program until you have a firm grasp on the benefits these levers can drive."

Working alongside Gordmans, the Epicor Retail CRM Services team designed a program featuring easy-to-understand perks, anchored around dollar rewards and a point scale. gRewards members earn one point for every dollar they spend, receive a $10 reward for every 200 points earned, and enjoy an annual birthday reward. In addition, 'Preferred Status' and 'Platinum Status' levels are determined by annual spend amounts and result in additional savings based on qualifications.

For the pilot program, the decision was made to send gRewards certificates via direct mail on a monthly basis, with a forward-looking goal of being able to email reward notices and use a voucher management system to monitor the use and expiration of rewards.

"When designing a program, you need to strike a careful balance between efficiency, cost, customer convenience, security, and fraud protection," said Fennes. "You also have to consider the communication channels, technologies, and systems you have available; factor in the operational requirements; and answer key questions such as 'Who is going to manage the operations and customer service requests?' and 'How will frontline sales associates be trained and performance gauged?'" To ensure the customer-facing team members were engaged and invested in gRewards, Epicor worked with Gordmans' management to initiate an incentive program to challenge associates at each location.

Rewards: exceeding expectations

The pilot program launched in 10 stores across Colorado and Utah and was quickly embraced by Gordmans' shoppers. The rewards component that Epicor established far exceeded anticipated pilot milestones and metrics. The company says it can now identify their best shoppers, connect with them to drive guest advocacy, pinpoint buying habits, and personalize the approaches to various customer segments. The difference in the purchase behavior of members versus non-members is meaningful and is a testament to the importance of knowing your customer and leveraging the right technology to hit the mark.

With one complete view of their customers, Gordmans will continue to report on purchase history and run campaigns designed specifically to improve sales and customer satisfaction levels for each targeted segment. "gRewards distinguishes Gordmans from the competition," said Fennes. "The Epicor Retail CRM solution underpins their innovative rewards program, and we look forward to helping the retailer continue to gain a competitive advantage."

Company Facts

Location: Omaha, NE
Industry: Everyday Low Price (EDLP) retailer
Number or Employees: 6,000
Number of Stores: 93

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