This Week in Retail: Using surprises to delight customers, Easter tips for retailers and more

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Hey Venders, welcome to another installment of This Week in Retail. Today’s issue is packed with useful retail-centric stories including real-life examples of beacons in action, how to wow customers with the element of surprise, what to do for Easter 2014, and more.

Check ‘em out below:

1. Five examples of how marketers are using iBeacons – The use of beacons is undoubtedly one of the “it” trends in retail today, and for good reason: the technology gives merchants new capabilities to market and serve customers. In this post, Graham Charlton at Econsultancy cites five real-life examples of iBeacons in action. From Macy’s delivering tailored deals, to a scavenger hunt at CES, you’ll find some cool uses–and hopefully inspiration–that’ll help you leverage beacons in your store.

2. Shock and awesome: Why surprise rewards work – We’ve talked about why offering rewards to your loyal customers is a great move. But if you want to take things a step further, consider adding the element of surprise into your loyalty efforts. In this article, RetailWire looks into “surprise rewards” and how they can benefit retailers. It also provides a number of good examples, including Expedia surprising its elite members with a $100 coupon and Caribou Coffee giving out unexpected rewards to its members. Give it a read and be sure to check out the discussion comments as well.

3. Retailers to invest more in technology throughout 2014 – It looks like retailers are planning to double down on technology this year. According to the Retail Growth Strategies Survey 2014, more than 80% of the UK’s top retailers said that they “intend to spend more on technology this year than in 2013.” What exactly are they planning to invest in? The survey found that retailers are interested in a variety of technologies, including mobile payments, in-store iPads, consumer apps and augmented reality.

4. Online shopping expectations for Easter 2014 – Easter is less than two weeks away. Do you have anything special planned? If not, this article should give you some ideas. Shop.org lists a number of insights and tips to help retailers bring in more business this Easter. Check out the post and see if you can put any of them into action.

5. U.S. seamless retail survey results 2014 [INFOGRAPHIC] – Accenture conducted a survey of US consumers at the end of 2013 and found that “shoppers plan to buy more from stores but want the in-store shopping experience to match the convenience of online.” This nifty infographic illustrates some useful data surrounding consumers’ behavior and preferences when it comes to shopping online and in-store.

About Francesca Nicasio

Francesca Nicasio is Vend's Retail Expert and Content Strategist. She writes about trends, tips, and other cool things that enable retailers to increase sales, serve customers better, and be more awesome overall. She's also the author of Retail Survival of the Fittest, a free eBook to help retailers future-proof their stores. Connect with her on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Google+.

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