WebSphere Commerce’s store locator comes to the rescue

November 27, 2013 Written by NetSphere Category: Omni-Channel
WebSphere Commerce’s store locator comes to the rescue
When the in-laws make a last-minute announcement that they’ll be rolling into town, there is undoubtedly a bit of scrambling to do. At the very least, the guest bedroom might need a quick makeover. [Insert favorite home goods store] to the rescue!
For simplicity’s sake, let’s say that favorite home goods store is Target. For this frazzled daughter- and son-in-law, Target usually has the hypoallergenic pillows and sheet sets that they like. But the last thing they’ll want to do is drive from store to store looking for the specific colors or sizes that they need. After all, the clock is ticking.
The first order of business will be to locate the items online on the Target website. The second will be determining which stores have the available stock and which are closest. The third will be taking advantage of Target’s new pick-up-at-store option. The fourth will be taking a big sigh of relief.
This couple won’t be the only to feel a huge weight lifted off their chests, though. Online merchants who leverage IBM’s WebSphere Commerce will also be relieved to know that the eCommerce platform includes a store locator, which satisfies one of the biggest challenges of omni-channel retailing today.
For site visitors, the store locator can be accessed through a few simple methods. A link to the store locator can be found in the header portion of the site. A select-store option can also be found at the product-availability portion of the product-details page. Finally, the store locator is accessible via the incredibly handy pick-up-at-store option. According to
IBM, using the store locator is as easy as 1, 2, 3:
  1. The customer navigates to the Store Locator page and selects the appropriate Country > State/Province > City, and clicks GO.
  2. The store location results are displayed, with the store name and address, hours, and the option to add the store to the store list. If the store locator is accessed from the Product Details availability page, two additional options are available: i.     A store location can be chosen as the pickup location when buying online and picking up in-store. ii.     The availability of all items in the shopping cart can be checked.
  3. Optional: Any store result can be added to Your Store List, for quickly accessing the selected store locations. Adding a store to the store list is required when checking out and choosing to pick up the items in-store:

IBM’s store-locator feature can also be integrated with map service providers. By doing so, potential shoppers will appreciate the enhanced search and display capabilities, making it even easier to pick up the items that they need.

Target is going to get a lot of foot traffic over the next few weeks with some of it having found its way to specific stores thanks to the store locator feature. And helping shoppers – perhaps those who are putting on the finishing touches before the in-laws arrive – not only increases rates in repeat traffic, but also helps to create a loyal customer base.

To leverage assistance for the integration of a store-locator feature on your eCommerce site, contact NetSphere Strategies. We have experience implementing store locators for WebSphere Commerce users as well as developing similar solutions for various user requirements.

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Abbe Miller is the marketing manager at NetSphere Strategies, located just outside Chicago. NetSphere Strategies is a boutique eCommerce company positioned to help businesses transform their online presence by providing a full complement of services that starts with our strategic consulting and creative design teams, then continues with building innovative solutions and providing ongoing post-project support.