SOURCE: Aberdeen Group

August 13, 2008 10:00 ET

Green Retail Initiatives Drive Down Costs and Catalyze Customer Loyalty

Best-in-Class Performers Achieve Top-Line Revenue Growth and Bottom-Line Cost Savings While Boosting Customer Loyalty

BOSTON, MA--(Marketwire - August 13, 2008) - After surveying over 100 retailers focused on leveraging sustainability initiatives to increase customer loyalty, Aberdeen, a Harte-Hanks Company (NYSE: HHS), published the report, "Getting From Green to Gold: Retail Success Factors and Outcomes," which outlined information revealed from retail executives about their green and sustainability agendas, priorities, and strategies across all areas of the retail enterprise from the supply chain and headquarters -- to stores and facilities.

The top 4 pressures driving companies to focus on green/sustainable supply chain programs today are the desire for competitive advantage (57% of companies), the need to control rising energy costs (38% of companies), the need to improve brand value and equity (34% of companies), followed by the need for innovation (31% of companies) and pressure around present or expected compliance mandates (30% of companies).

Survey results show that the firms enjoying Best-in-Class performance shared common characteristics involving various aspects of strategy, reporting, visibility, technology, etc. Results show that:

--  The Best-in-Class retailers achieved a 20% decrease in energy costs
--  The Best-in-Class retailers achieved an 8% decrease in their overall
    logistics and transport costs
--  The Best-in-Class retailers achieved a decrease of 5% in merchandise
    costs
    

Additionally, the Best-in-Class achieved significant improvements in customer loyalty measured by improved rates of customer acquisition (+17%), customer retention (+31%), and customer satisfaction (69% of Best-in-Class with CSAT rates above 80%). According to Jhana Senxian, Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility Specialist at Aberdeen and report author, "Sustainability is as much about change in organizational culture as it is about process transformation. Accordingly, vision, leadership, education, and communication are as important as processes and technology. To be successful, companies must be visionary, holistic, and quantitative in approach."

A complimentary copy of this report is made available due in part by the following underwriters: Enablon, HCL, and SAP. To obtain a complimentary copy of the report, visit: http://www.aberdeen.com/link/sponsor.asp?cid=5213

To access all of Aberdeen's complimentary research please visit http://research.aberdeen.com.



About Aberdeen Group, a Harte-Hanks Company

Aberdeen is a leading provider of fact-based research and market intelligence that delivers demonstrable results. Having benchmarked more than 30,000 companies in the past two years, Aberdeen is uniquely positioned to educate users to action: driving market awareness, creating demand, enabling sales, and delivering meaningful return-on-investment analysis. As the trusted advisor to the global technology markets, corporations turn to Aberdeen™ for insights that drive decisions.

As a Harte-Hanks Company, Aberdeen plays a key role of putting content in context for the global direct and targeted marketing company. Aberdeen's analytical and independent view of the "customer optimization" process of Harte-Hanks (Information - Opportunity - Insight - Engagement - Interaction) extends the client value and accentuates the strategic role Harte-Hanks brings to the market. For additional information, visit Aberdeen http://www.aberdeen.com or call (617) 723-7890, or to learn more about Harte-Hanks, call (800) 456-9748 or go to http://www.harte-hanks.com.

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