Best Buy revamps Web analytics after 2009 data outage: IRCE 2011

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Understanding how to collect and manage data has allowed Best Buy Co. to optimize campaigns and bring customers deeper into the sales funnel, said Lynn Lanphier, director of digital analytics at the company, on June 16.

The Minneapolis-based retailer also hired a consultancy after experiencing a Web analytics outage that started on Black Friday 2009 and lasted more than a week, she said at the Internet Retailer Conference and Exhibition in San Diego.

Best Buy has worked with consultancy Web Analytics Demystified since December 2010 to improve analytics staffing, governance, accountability and the use of technology to drive revenue, said Eric Peterson, senior partner and founder of the firm.

Lanphier described the 2009 outage as a “nightmare” and said her team was unable to “understand Black Friday [customer] performance.”

Web Analytics Demystified provided Best Buy with an 18-month roadmap that helped the company improve its use of Adobe analytics technology and focus on how best to allocate staff and resources.

Lanphier says the 2010 holiday season came and went with no technology issues. Her team was “quickly and dynamically able to engineer the Web analytics technology,” she said.

Lanphier also said Best Buy analysts “now have the time to work on recommendations,” and that $20 million incremental revenue has been generated through testing at Best Buy.

“We've moved from being in the back room to being in the boardroom,” she said. “A lot of the insights [derived] had to do with the way we were supporting businesses and product groupings…We could help each group optimize page flows and campaigns, getting people deeper into the funnel.”

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