Bob Schwartz here from the NRF 101st Annual Convention & EXPO floor at the Javits Center in NYC.

It is very interesting for me to see the change over the years in the content around eCommerce and multi-channel at NRF’s BigShow.  Way back In 1998, I was speaking on a Keynote panel at the NRF Convention as Head of eCommerce for NORDSTROM Inc’s new internet group. The questions at that time focused on cannibalization, channel conflicts, talent and technology costs. My panel on eCommerce was more of a novelty at NRF in 1998. We have seen eCommerce and multi-channel become a bigger part of the NRF Convention content In recent years, yet this year is different.  In 2012, eCommerce, mobile devices, social and the ways in which technology is drastically reshaping retail are a core part of the NRF content schedule.  I couldn’t agree more with this emphasis, since solving for these issues will quickly separate the retail winners from the losers over the next several years.

One topic that is of high interest is “social.” Social is quickly becoming a fundamental core influence on of the way people make purchasing decisions.  But what is social shopping exactly? Is there more to it than Facebook “Likes” and Tweets? How do I utilize social shopping to drive my business? How do I keep up with the almost daily changes in this rapidly evolving technology? I’m excited to be speaking on this topic today as part of the panel  “Social Shopping: Mobility, Social Media and Personalized Services.” We’ll be discussing what retailers should know about social shopping to make the most out of this emerging channel. If you’re at the show make sure to stop by the panel at 3:15pm in Hall A, 1A 10/12. Hope to see you there!

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