As video games become more and more of a mainstay to worldwide entertainment culture, both the entertainment and retail industries have had to adapt. The combination of deeply immersive experiences and constant technological progress creates a fervent fanbase eagerly demanding the next big game. Getting their hands on hot titles immediately upon release is often a gamer’s top priority–above price or other considerations–dictating their choice of retailer. On the other hand, videogame creators are protective of release date embargoes, ensuring that no one “breaks street date” and providing incentives for retailers to meet their expectations when launching new games to the public.
For GameStop–the #1 global retailer in this specialty market with more than 7500 store locations across 14 countries and more than $9B sales volume–fine-tuning its fulfillment systems to straddle this line is mission critical. On top of that, in the midst of industry-wide disintermediation from music to books, it is also incredibly important for GameStop to provide a great experience to their customer base. By providing a consistent, frictionless, branded experience from end to end, they add value and remain the destination of choice for gamers.
We love that Narvar’s product allows us to connect with our customers at a crucial time in the shopping journey.
Bill Graham, Director of Multichannel at GameStop
Improving the customer experience
When Bill Graham, the Director of Multichannel at GameStop, identified a gap in their engagement with customers in the post-purchase phase, he and his team turned to Narvar. “We love that Narvar’s product allows us to connect with our customers at a crucial time in the shopping journey,” said Graham. “With Narvar, our loyal customers can continue to engage with GameStop through branded SMS, personalized merchandising and marketing content.”
Presenting additional marketing content between purchase and delivery of the new product–the new moment of truth–has led to nearly 29% of customers clicking back to the GameStop website and generating a healthy amount of incremental revenue every month. “We see this additional revenue as a great value-add,” said Graham. “Just keeping customers within the GameStop experience and driving them back to our site is the break-even as we cultivate our customer base. We are very happy with the customer experience improvements Narvar’s solution has helped us provide.”
Fine-tuning the supply chain
Honing fulfillment starts with transparency offered by great data. “One of the biggest selling points for us was the customer-focused analytics Narvar offers for the entire lifecycle of a package,” said Gib Pribbenow, Multichannel Product Manager at GameStop. “We’re able to monitor how well we are meeting our SLAs and delivering on our promise to our customers by providing critical visibility for our logistics.”
GameStop offers many different shipping options to its customers, including from warehouses or from its store locations. One game-changing insight from Narvar’s analytics was the speed at which their ship-from-store deliveries were getting to customers. Over 50% of those orders were arriving in just one day, even via ground shipping. “Previously, we’d have to dig through piles and piles of raw shipping data to see something like this. Narvar provides us delivery analytics that help us quickly get independent validation of what we suspected,” said Pribbenow. Solid data empowers GameStop to rethink its approach to game releases, same-day shipping and release date delivery.
Building the backbone for growth
In his role as Multichannel Product Manager, Gib Pribbenow plays a key role in defining customer needs and implementing the solutions which make up the GameStop multichannel experience. That includes their OMS (Order Management System), inventory management, search appliance, personalization engine–and post-purchase engagement, which Narvar provides. As GameStop continues to grow and diversify in related businesses serving the same customer base (such as SimplyMac, Cricket Wireless and ThinkGeek) turnkey platforms become even more critical to support these varied initiatives.
With Narvar, our loyal customers can continue to engage with GameStop through branded SMS, personalized merchandising and marketing content.
Bill Graham, Director of Multichannel at GameStop
Narvar’s post-purchase platform is ideal for GameStop, as it provides targeting across a broad range of customer bases, and is geared for rapid deployment. “Once we recognized the customer experience gap and saw what some other retailers were doing in the post-purchase space, speed to market became an important requirement. By engaging Narvar we were able to get up and running in just a few weeks,” said Pribbenow. “We know that as we grow the company, that kind of agility will help us bring additional businesses online quickly from an operations standpoint.”
GameStop works with specialists in their respective areas, which is yet another reason they’ve partnered with Narvar. Pribbenow states, “It’s great that Narvar is a subject matter expert in post-purchase and next-gen customer experience. We trust them to know what’s new and evolving in the space and keep us ahead of the game.”