x

READY TO BECOME A MEMBER?

Stay up to date on the digital shelf.

x

THANK YOU!

We'll keep you up to date!

Interview

Webinar: Establish KPIs & Measure the Value of Your Digital Shelf

What’s the old adage? You can’t manage what you don’t measure. And defining the right KPIs to measure and optimize the business value you are driving on the digital shelf has long been a moving target. But there is now enough experience and best practices developing out there to really build a solid discipline around it. This is a podcast audio version of a webinar featuring of course Lauren Livak, Director of the Digital Shelf Institute and driving force behind the playbook, and our special guest, Whitney Young, Director of Ecommerce at Energizer to discuss the critical KPIs of the digital shelf and why it’s imperative to measure your successes in your ecommerce strategy.

Transcript:

Peter Crosby:
Welcome to Unpacking the Digital Shelf, where we explore brand manufacturing in the digital age. Hey everyone, Peter Crosby from the Digital Shelf Institute. What's the old adage? You can't manage what you don't measure? And defining the right KPIs to measure and optimize the business value while driving on the digital shelf has long been a moving target, but there is now enough experience and best practices developing out there to really build a solid discipline around it. This is a podcast audio version of a webinar featuring of course Lauren Livak, Director of the Digital Shelf Institute and driving force behind the Digital Shelf Playbook series. And our special guest, Whitney Young, Director of E-commerce at Energizer to discuss the critical KPIs of the digital shelf and why it's imperative to measure your successes in your e-commerce strategy.

Peter Crosby:
And so, Whitney, thank you so much for contributing to the DSI community. We are so grateful.

Whitney Young:
Pleasure to be here. Thanks.

Peter Crosby:
And Lauren, welcome back as always.

Lauren Livak:
Thank you, so excited. I can't believe we're at number nine.

Peter Crosby:
It's insane. It's insane. What a tremendous series you put together. So before we start, I want to remind you that throughout the session, please feel free to drop your questions in the Q&A window in the Zoom window, and we will get to as many as we can. We will as always be sending a recording out to you a couple of days following to share with your colleagues. I just want to remind you that, as we said, this is part of a 10 webinar series that started in 2021 and dipped over into this year, which we've just gotten so much great feedback on. You can see where we've been: process, people, team structure, executive mentality, on and on, and the ninth is value measurement and coming up over the next several weeks-ish. It will be the enabling technology, the final series.

Peter Crosby:
I can guarantee you, we will be returning to these topics throughout the year to come and 2023, because they are and remain the central pillars that a company needs to get really good at over their lifetime in eCommerce and digital shelf in order to be good and in order to continue to optimize and drive performance and growth on the digital shelf. So we're super excited about the series. We'll give a link to the whole series at the end, but for now let's start talking about measurement. With that, I will hand it over to Lauren.

Lauren Livak:
Thanks so much, Peter. Hello everyone, thank you for joining. I'm really excited to be here for number nine and value measurements. So Whitney coined it really well with the song we started with. It is tricky and we want to make sure that we can outline what you need to measure, how you need to measure it, where you can get the data from, how to showcase and affect value within your organization, and also how to communicate it. We know it can be challenging and every organization is different, so we're going to have some examples about what could work, some things you might be able to try and really help you hone in on how to define what success looks like for you. Like Peter said, what gets measured gets managed so it's really important to focus in on that.

Lauren Livak:
I like to start with this because I think it's really important. If you're not able to measure it, you probably don't understand what you're trying to achieve because you can set out all of these fantastic goals, especially with the digital shelf, but there are so many retailers, there's so many requirements and there's so many different types of success depending on what you're executing on so you really need to know how to measure it, what to look at and how you can pull different levers to really affect that change. And that's really why it matters. You need to know where to focus, where to grow and you also need to test and learn a bit. Maybe if I pull this lever over here on content, I see a change in sales. Maybe if I focus more on ratings and reviews, I can get more insight about my product. So it's really important to make sure that you understand your baseline or you want to get to, and then how to double down on that as you're looking to continue to grow within e-commerce and the digital shelf.

Lauren Livak:
So to start off, I really want to focus on outcomes and value. So instead of thinking red, yellow, green scorecard, I have an A, this is red, this is 20%, which I think is the traditional approach to measurement. It's really important to focus on both the outcome you're trying to drive as well as the value you're trying to provide to the organization. So when you think about outcomes, here's three questions you can start with, just to start, are you investing enough for success? So we all know if we're on the call and we're working with a digital shelf, it requires a level of investment, especially when it comes to retail media, content creation, syndication. It's really important to make sure that you are investing enough to be successful. Then how is that investment paying off? And also how do we improve our return on investment?

Lauren Livak:
So asking those three questions is really important to think about the outcomes you're trying to drive, and then how can you anchor those things to the value that they are going to help with within your organization? We found that usually value falls into three categories, sales and market share growth, right? You want to win your category, you want to exceed your sales growth, you want to exceed market expectations. So you want to beat out your competitors, you want to work with the retailers the best you can, you want to have the best partnerships with them. That is a bit harder from a metric standpoint, but it's really good to make sure that you're accounting for, and then driving operational excellence and cost optimization. I think sometimes this gets lost, but it's really important to look at efficiency within your organization and understand how you can become faster, how you can become more efficient, how you can have your teams driving to the same end goal so that you can achieve sales and market share.

Lauren Livak:
So really making sure when you're starting your measurement journey, anchor yourself on outcomes and on value. This is just a list of some of the typical areas of measurement. It is not all inclusive, there are a lot of things to measure. These are the most popular areas, the most important, the ones you can really kind of pull from a trigger perspective in terms of making an impact on your content on all of your metrics. Things like ratings and reviews, share of voice, loyalty, price. I'm sure everyone is usually familiar with those. And then the efficiency and adoption metric, we also threw in there as well to the point about operationalizing. It's really important to also measure your internal metric. How are my teams collaborating? How fast am I getting content live? How fast am I getting content created? All of those impact your price, your share of voice, your ratings and reviews because all of that needs data and content to get out live onto the retailer sites. So it's really important to look at that holistically.?

Lauren Livak:
I do want to make a call out there. We do have a great piece of DSI content called the Digital Shelf Measurement Framework. Today Whitney and I are going to be talking about the high level, the strategy for building a value measurement program within your organization, but that framework goes into detail. What are you measuring? Where can you find that data? Where is it within your organization or with a third party? So I really encourage you to check out that digital shelf framework. Peter is going to put the link in the chat. That really digs in as a double click to this webinar about the specifics behind each of these different measurement areas. And then I'm going to pass it over to Whitney.

Whitney Young:
Thanks Lauren. Good morning again everyone, it's a pleasure to be here. I'm going to dive in a little bit more on where the data is? So really the first question you have to ask yourself is where can I gather data to measure my performance? And there's so many pieces to consider when you ask yourself this question: what internal data sources do I have? What external data sources do I have? Where can I find qualitative data? Where can I find quantitative data? If I already have a data source, are there other sources around that can give me a more comprehensive view? How do I get to my baseline? What about a current baseline? What about a historic baseline? How do I measure progress? All of these things may not come from the same data source and are key to considering where you find the data.

Whitney Young:
The key here is that the source of data will look different for every organization and for every digital shelf need. So the question of where is the data, it really does need to be assessed on a case by case basis. A few other points here, ask around your organization, don't just stop with yourself or your team and think that you know where all the data sources are. There's cross-functional resources likely internally in your organization that have sources of data that you're not even aware of. Ask around your vendor community or your digital network. Vendors may be able to give you access to data sources you didn't know were available. And remember, the digital world is evolving so quickly; sources that didn't exist six months ago may exist today. So let's move on to the next slide here and talk a little bit about how to measure.

Whitney Young:
There's really five key areas to consider when measuring data to support the articulation of the value of your output. First, data owner. Make sure you know, which team owns, which piece of data for input and that those owners understand when and how you'll need the data on an ongoing basis. Second, is the measurement owner. Determine who within your organization is responsible for compiling the data and reporting out on measurement of that data. Three, the reporting cadence. Determine at what cadence you'll report out on your measurements and make stakeholders aware. And then four, and I would say this is maybe the most difficult, clearly define what metrics you'll report out on and how those will be measured. Ensure your measurement owner, the one who's responsible for compiling the data is aligned to your expectations, including really how you'll measure the baseline and then how you'll measure go forward progress.

Whitney Young:
I've been tripped up by this so many times in my career, and a focus upfront on the measurements will really help you here. Then finally, scope. Ensure you've aligned on the scope of reporting. So which categories, which brands, which regions, or any other cuts that are meaningful to your business. Without this clarity, everyone could be pulling and even more importantly, interpreting data incorrectly, which is key to success.

Lauren Livak:
Whitney, one thing I wanted to bring up, because you had a great suggestion on this, excuse me, you suggested quarterly in terms of reporting. I know I get that question a lot like, "Should it be weekly? Should it be monthly?" Can you talk a bit about why you suggested quarterly?

Whitney Young:
Yeah, I do think it depends a little bit on the data point or what you're trying to deliver and the stakeholder group to which you're doing it, but I think quarterly is a great place to start. I think I find stakeholders are very stretched for time and if you report more frequently than that outside of your direct team, oftentimes folks don't take the time to digest as much as maybe they should. Quarterly is where you've seen enough change in the business that a new report, a new metric makes sense to share. So that's where I'd start and then adjust from there, Lauren.

Lauren Livak:
Awesome. Thanks. The other thing I want to also double down on here is the talk about metrics you can influence, right? Because if you're reporting on a metric and let's say it's not in a great place, but you can't actually control it, you either need to be very clear about that on your... whether it's a scorecard or meeting or whatever that is, and you need to be clear about which teams might be able to influence what, because if you can't change the metric, you need to make sure you're educating people on why that metric is showing up.

Whitney Young:
I love that-

Lauren Livak:
Would you-

Whitney Young:
... you added that? Yes, I love that you added that. Agree. Okay, so ways to communicate. So you often think finding data is hard, then you think figuring out how to measure it is hard. But personally I would argue, figuring out how to communicate is the trickiest back to our intro song. I wonder how many of you have worked at, or currently work at organizations where the following is true. Everybody wants to know information, but nobody has the time to digest it. Everyone has too many meetings, too many emails too, and they'll say, "Build me a dashboard, Whitney." I'll go look at it and self-serve, and then I don't have to spend, you don't have to email it to me. But then I know I build it and my team invests time to build it and then our stakeholders barely have time to review it. They want to, it's just we're stretched.

Whitney Young:
So I've seen this scenario play out in a number of organizations over my career, and what I've learned is that communication is a fine art. I would argue there's no one single way that is best or that can serve as your long term solution. You have to start somewhere and you constantly have to assess how your communication is going and tweak where it's needed to fit really the company culture and goals and evolve as time evolves. So my suggestion here is start by determining which pieces of information are best served through email, a dashboard or scorecard, a live presentation or meeting.

Whitney Young:
If it needs explanation and you need to explain why, I highly recommend either an upfront training or having a meeting to cover it. If the metrics can stand for themselves, an email or a dashboard can work. Start there, but most importantly, ask for feedback periodically from your stakeholders, figure out are they actually looking at what I'm sharing and what I'm communicating? And if not, how do we need to adjust our communication format or structure so that they're getting the information they need? So with that let's move to a poll, I think.

Lauren Livak:
Yes. Great. So we want to engage the audience and get better... Oh, Peter.

Peter Crosby:
Hey, sorry. Yeah, I just wanted... Michael raised his hand to ask a question and I thought maybe we'd open it up. Michael, just presuming that you meant to raise your hand, go ahead and throw Whitney or Lauren a question.

Michael:
Actually, I was just raising my hand saying, "Yeah, I'm one of those people that wants the information to make a dashboard for me and not always able to use it."

Peter Crosby:
So that was like, "Hey, I'm over here-

Whitney Young:
You followed my instructions.

Peter Crosby:
... I'm over here feeling your pain." Hey Michael, thank you so much. So-

Lauren Livak:
I love it.

Peter Crosby:
... again to everyone, feel free either to raise your hand if you'd like to talk live, or drop something in the Q&A and we will get there. So yes, now we are moving on to a poll.

Lauren Livak:
Yes, so we want to hear from you. Do you have a formal reporting cadence for digital shelf success today? So you can say yes, you can say no, maybe you're developing it, so really want to understand within your organization kind of where you stand. So it should be popping up on your screen and you should be able to reply.

Peter Crosby:
It is up there and answers are streaming in. I'm just going to give it more time. All right, I'm going to call the poll on 3, 2, 1.

Lauren Livak:
All right. Oh, wow. Very interesting. Very evenly split here-

Peter Crosby:
I know.

Lauren Livak:
... in terms of yes, have a pro... I think this is the most-

Peter Crosby:
And add heat.

Lauren Livak:
... even split we've ever seen.

Peter Crosby:
Yeah, I think so. I think so.

Lauren Livak:
Wow, so really a mix of people who have a program don't have a program or in development. So I think all of this content will be super important and helpful as you're looking to grow this. As we go through this, for the people who do have programs, I would also love to hear your feedback. Like, what have you done? What has worked? What hasn't worked? Or even those that are in development, what are some of the challenges that you're having? So please feel free to be interactive in the conversation because we really want to hear from you as you're going through it as well. One point I want to make, and then I'll pass it back to Whitney is when she was talking about the different ways of sharing the data, I'm going to tie in the past webinar about education and e-commerce education.

Lauren Livak:
Adding that commentary to Whitney's point is really important because if you see a metric that says, let's say for example, Amazon content completeness, and you see that your organization, and I'm totally making this up, is that like 20%. You might say, "Oh wow, that's really not great. How do I affect that? What does that mean?" And you might go to your e-commerce team and be like, "Go fix that." But what that actually means is you need to make sure you have the right process in place, the right technology, you're sending the right content to Amazon, they're receiving it appropriately. So there's a lot behind that metric so the more commentary you can add when you're providing the dashboard is helpful for you, because the questions will probably come back to you and your team, and also just helpful for the organization to understand the broader picture. So Whitney I'll pass back to you.

Whitney Young:
Well, it's all about education and that's a little bit of what we're going to start to talk about here and glad to hear that it ties to the prior web webinar. A key goal when you think about overall communication is around education. I believe as a leader or as just a stakeholder working within an e-commerce team or a digital team, part of your role and responsibility is to educate the broader organization on how the digital shelf works, what it takes to achieve success, where the organization is relative to other internal expectations and even competitors. To do that, we have to set KPIs and measure the value of delivery. That is our method to educate and communicate. So if you think about who to communicate to, if we flip to the next slide, there's a number of different stakeholders out there.

Whitney Young:
But for starters, if you are one of those who said you're in development, or you have not built a digital shelf performance dashboard, take a step back and determine who needs to know about your success, or even more importantly sometimes your challenges, who within your organization? I'm sure your list will comprise of stakeholders directly on your team who you're probably already communicating in some form or fashion too. But there's likely other stakeholders that will get added to this list that sit on cross functional teams that you need to influence to help you achieve your goals, and then on the executive team as well, and maybe some additional outside of that, pending your business or category. But I think figuring out within these three key buckets who to communicate to is critical to making sure that your KPIs are understood and that your value is getting communicated in the appropriate way.

Lauren Livak:
Whitney, that goes back to the how too, right? Like the C-suite looks at content differently than maybe your direct team. So have you found something to be successful with the executive leadership team versus maybe the cross functional team?

Whitney Young:
Yeah, I'd say it's scaling back the detail and getting better at refining kind of your summary highlights key takeaways. What has worked well is in my direct team, needs it all and wants it all and wants the details. But build a summary for them too, right? What's my takeaway from this data? What is working well? What is not working well? How do I summarize that up? And then you can take that summary and maybe some pieces of the data, the cross functional partners, and just the summary to the C-suite. If there's questions, you can go deeper into the details, but oftentimes that's how we are rolling up the reporting.

Whitney Young:
So let's move on to what to communicate. Once you've identified who to communicate to, identify what to communicate. While sharing dashboards and data results is important, without the context, it can be meaningless to stakeholders. And this is a little bit what Lauren was just saying as we were flipping out of the poll. You must add context. It is critical to helping the larger organization and even your team understand what to make of all the data, and without the context, the data becomes somewhat meaningless. So think about how best to share your journey. Where are you today? Where do you want to be tomorrow? How do the KPIs and measurements play into that? And how can you leverage your KPIs and measurements of success to prove your success to the organization and call out some of the successes of your team members? In addition, to call out the challenges and articulate what you need from the organization to further grow and develop your digital shelf.

Whitney Young:
You know, a little bit of a story here. I worked at a consulting firm in my prior life and I started working for a larger consumer products client in the apparel space. I went into an interview on one of my first days with a very senior leader to learn more about the business. The leader started rattling off KPIs to me in part of our conversation, "We delivered X billion dollars in sales last year, we have X penetration of sales online, you name it." And I said back to him, "Well, is that good? Bad? Where did you want to be? Where do you want to go? Are you on track?" The response to that was a lot shakier than the exact KPI that he gave me, and that's where it became very clear he was missing the context, right?

Whitney Young:
The context can help him and others like myself understand the broader business and what those metrics and KPIs truly meant. So as you think about KPIs and value measurement, identifying what to communicate and how to communicate is super critical to delivery. Let's move to the next slide. This is a slight turn in topics here, although we're still talking about measurement, but Lauren and I, as we were prepping for the session, did want to spend some time on media. And that's really because the media's such an interesting area of data and of delivery in the world that we live in. I guess, as we discuss the topic of KPIs, I would say the media is maybe the most challenging area that I see.

Whitney Young:
I think we'll all be talking more and more about media in the months and years to come, just because the way that area is evolving. We have to think of a couple examples here. We have more of our traditional retailers entering the media space, and on top of that demanding more and more of our finite brand dollars. Then further as more brands enter the online space, the cost of competing in media is forcing our dollar to not go as far and it's becoming harder to compete. We also have media opportunities continuously evolving. Think of all the new tactics coming online from all the various retailers and partners and figuring out how best to invest your dollar and maximize your ROI is a complexity that we all have to work through. Then further on top of that, for many media's managed by a number of different stakeholders or groups within a single organization, oftentimes sitting across marketing, digital, sales. It varies organization to organization, but what that means is cross functional stakeholders need to work together in order to deliver media in the most efficient and effective way.

Whitney Young:
So that's a lot of challenge, a lot of complexity hitting us in space, but the good news in light of all of these challenges is that there's a lot of data available. It's just a matter of how we make the best use of it to drive action. So we can use available data to inform decisions on where and how to invest. We can use the data to inform decisions on how best to prioritize our spends across different tactics that are available, but also even different retailers, right? If we only have a finite pool of dollars for the organization, how do we invest it across different retail platforms? Or per our prior conversation, how do we use the data to educate the organization on why media is critical to our delivery and why we need so many dollars in that space? So I think we're going to turn it into the next poll.

Lauren Livak:
Yes. And Whitney real quick, before we went there, I wanted to tie back the previous slide. When you talk about media, because so many retailers you're getting into media and you're fighting for which dollar do I spend where, that context and that why, what are we trying to drive? What are we trying to achieve? It helps you be rock solid with, "Okay, this media outlet will help me, or maybe it won't, or let me look at the debt and better understand it." So regardless of what you're measuring, whether it's media, whether it's content, if you have that north star, it allows you to make better decisions and then you can get your whole organization to go with you rather than just kind of moving to the next retailer that is creating a media platform, which probably isn't the best strategy and is going to be very challenging with limited budget.

Whitney Young:
Yeah, I do think the world of media is... For those who don't understand e-commerce and have not played in the media space before, I find it one of the most challenging areas to articulate what we're doing and to express success or challenges, because there's a multitude of metrics and data points to look at. So helping first off stakeholders understand what those are and what those mean and how there's not one single metric that says, "Yes, we rocked it," or "no, we landed in a pile of challenges." It's something we are constantly working through and trying to optimize our reporting.

Peter Crosby:
A pile of challenges. I like it.

Whitney Young:
A pile of challenges.

Peter Crosby:
Wondering what-

Whitney Young:
That's your takeaway, Peter,

Peter Crosby:
Exactly. A pile of challenges and it's tricky.

Whitney Young:
It's tricky. It is.

Peter Crosby:
Where's the poll?

Lauren Livak:
So here we are, poll number two, do you feel like you have a good process for managing your budget and accounting for what you need next year? We know that this is challenging. Whether it's media, whether it's digital shelf, whether it's digital as a whole, we'd love to really understand kind of where you are on your budget journey.

Peter Crosby:
Wow, there is a definite trend arising here. I see that. I think it has to do with the pile of challenges. All right. I'm going to end the poll in 3, 2, 1.

Lauren Livak:
There we go. 85% is a no. I feel like we're all in the same boat here, right? Whitney, would you agree?

Whitney Young:
It's true. It's a little higher than I was expecting, but you know, budgets, I think they make us all want to pull our hair out because we all need more money. There is never more money, right? And how you work through that with the organization is always a challenge

Peter Crosby:
And there's still-

Lauren Livak:
But that's what we're going to talk about. Go ahead.

Peter Crosby:
Well, I was just going to say there's still also the silos of brand marketing versus performance. There's so many stakeholders and with the return of in store, I would imagine just some of the shifts that may have happened during eCommerce. You know, the only shelf that was the digital shelf is now starting to settle out and I imagine those are difficult conversations to have across [inaudible 00:30:16].

Whitney Young:
They are. It goes back to the prior point of some of what makes media challenging is that in many organizations I've spent quite a bit of time with a network, because I try to understand, well, how others are doing it because I don't know that we've ever gotten to the optimal point. But media sits across multiple functions and trying to figure out how everyone works together to deliver the most efficient and effective operation is not always the easiest when everyone has slightly different objectives or doesn't sit on the same team. Budget is right there alongside it, because with the media comes dollars, right? If you think of it, we have $1 for the organization and we want to maximize it for the good of the organization. How are we all working together to do that? I think that's something everyone's working on and trying to figure out and I haven't found the best answer, but I think it's tweaking and adjusting as we learn more.

Whitney Young:
So let's get into the budget for data. My guess is everyone here on the phone says we all seek to find as much data internally as possible because it's mostly free. It's free in my case. You might think of an example where it's not. But you will likely be better versed and a better business leader if you also source and supplement data through external vendors, which will cost something. That means we have to go ask for a budget, obtain a budget or ask for the same budget we had in prior years. So a few thoughts just as I have worked through this in my own career that I wanted to share.

Whitney Young:
One of the best things that I have done is think about the business in the longer term and how best to communicate that and then set your task within that. What I've found is it's never easy to get new line items added to a budget, but in my world they're always popping up, right? There's always a new vendor, there's always a new piece of data, and I'm sure that's true of many on the phone. What I've tried to do is explain, this is the top line growth and bottom line growth that I believe we can build for the entire business over the next three years, five years. You can choose your length of time. Within that, build a more granular supplemental P&L so you can articulate to leadership or the budget approvers what you will deliver from a growth perspective.

Whitney Young:
And within that, then embed the task of the organization for the needs you have, which will include your ask for a budget for data. Putting that into the context and you can see this little image that Lauren built on the left here, but putting your ask for budget in context of the larger growth that you will drive has helped me at least get approval for new line items and have an understanding of, "Oh, okay, you're asking for this, but you're going to get that in context of a larger delivery." A few other points on budget, make sure you're helping the budget approvers, whoever they are in your organization, understand why you need the data. Sometimes the dollars can be large. Like, "Do you really need that? Do we really need that? Couldn't you still go deliver X millions of dollars without paying for that data?"

Whitney Young:
Well, you maybe can for a short term, but the point is the data helps you measure your success, measure your challenge, take action in the midst of delivery. And we need that, we need that to deliver our business. So make sure you explain the why of what the data will show. Help the business, approvers understand what they can't see today and what they'll be able to see in the future. I've found that where I can source data, especially competitive data, many stakeholders internally want to see that too and they're like, "Okay, yes, sign me up for that. Let's see that." So that's kind of my second point. Third point is that we live in inflationary times. As you ask for budget and you're thinking year over year, don't just plan for last year's budget. It's probably last year's budget plus. You can get tripped up there and then you'll have to skinny back down kind of what you're working on. So those are kind of my key points here. It sounds from our poll budget is a challenge. I think it always will be, but those are some guiding principles

Lauren Livak:
And that little orange box near the icon is a perfect example of adding some context, right? You're not just asking for the dollars, you're showcasing that these dollars will get X percent growth. I think keeping that mindset when you're thinking about metrics in general is really important because if you can tie it to business value, in the beginning, we talked about outcomes and value, it makes it easier for people to better understand why they're making that investment and how it will impact the business overall.

Peter Crosby:
Also, I imagine Whitney, with your budget partners, the data and the measurement that you're able to report on throughout the year, you sort of build trust, I would imagine. That this becomes an affirming cycle where, "Look, I made it clear what I'm going for. I made these promises in connection with this spend and look, I deliver consistently." You know, you're able to demonstrate that and that builds trust over cycles, I would imagine

Whitney Young:
Exactly right. Exactly right. Otherwise, it's just the, you know? If you don't have data, what I find is stakeholders around engaging your business. In fact, they almost forget about you, right? They know e-commerce is out there, but if they're not seeing the progress or even the challenges, it's not top of mind and you need it to be top of mind. We all do, because this is where a lot of the growth is going to come from for our organizations now and in the future.

Lauren Livak:
So just to kind of close out to help people understand a framework for where to start. So we know that some people haven't started yet or maybe are in the process of starting. When Whitney and I were preparing, we tried to create a couple of steps that you can think about when you're beginning this journey and how to make it not seem still overwhelming. So the first part begins with the retailer that provides the most data. We all know that not every retailer will give you all of the amazing data that you want to be able to measure to look at everything you need to. Usually Amazon is the one that gives out the most data, some with the cost, some without, but pick whatever retailer that is for you, that you have the most data for and start there. Then think about, for those of you that are in North America, that is the majority of your business, start in North America and then brought into international.

Lauren Livak:
If you are international, start with the country that you have the most data for, or that is the most advanced from an e-commerce perspective and then think omnichannel. From a metric standpoint, it's really hard to go global at a big scale and then kind of go down more granular. You really need to start with a focus area, wherever that is, and then expand, and then think about more of an omnichannel approach from metrics so that you can understand what data you have and what you can measure. Then prioritize looking at the data that matters the most for retail and for that retailer. We talked about context, we talked about the north star, what are those elements? And then get alignment from leadership and the cross functional teams. As you're building this out, before you have a huge announcement that says, "Here's our scorecard and we're reporting quarterly," have people give feedback, have people react to it.

Lauren Livak:
I know personally I did a lot of that where I would show a scorecard and people would react to things that I was like, "Oh, I didn't react to that. I thought that was super clear." But to everyone else, it wasn't because they're not living in it day to day. So bringing them with you on that journey and also making sure the leadership understands those metrics and are on board for measuring those is really important before you really launch more broadly. And then try to fill in data gaps with other tools or vendors. Right? So Whitney talked about what data you might have; maybe ask agencies if they have data. If you're already working with vendors, do they have data that they can share? It's really important to find those pockets of data within your organization. I know when I was in my world, I found someone who had an Excel sheet, which was gold for me and I did not know that Excel sheet existed.

Lauren Livak:
We were able to make it not an Excel sheet and operationalize it more, but that one person had one Excel sheet with so much data that I needed and they were just in the organization somewhere and I didn't know that they existed. So it's really important to figure out where that data lives. And then begin to repeat that for other retailers. Test and learn, see what works and then make a broader program. Don't start with this massive program for 10 retailers if you've never measured before, because it's going to be really challenging to understand what works, what doesn't and what metrics you really need to focus on. So that's just a couple of steps about thinking about starting your program, and you can adapt your strategy if you don't know your performance. So really kind of tying all that back, it's really important to make sure that you understand where your baseline is and then where you want to focus to be able to grow.

Peter Crosby:
Thanks to Whitney for agreeing to share her thought leadership with our podcast audience as well. The source webinar and the entire Digital Shelf Playbook series is available at digitalshelfinstitute.org/digital-shelf-playbook. Thanks for being part of our community.