SOURCE: MarketLive

February 19, 2008 12:39 ET

MarketLive Merchants Outperform Retail Market With 19% Growth in Conversion and 23% Growth in Revenue According to MarketLive Performance Index Vol. 3

Performance Index Recommends Year-Round Gifting Strategies That Drive Engagement, Conversion, and Revenue and Decrease Cart Abandonment Rates

FOSTER CITY, CA--(Marketwire - February 19, 2008) - MarketLive® Inc., www.marketlive.com, the leading global eCommerce solution for retailers, today released the MarketLive Performance Index™ volume 3, indicating 18% growth in conversion rates from the prior quarter and a 19% increase over the same period in 2006. Revenue was also up an average of 23% as compared to the same period in 2006. The MarketLive Performance Index provides detailed analysis of aggregate performance data from approximately 100 online retailers using MarketLive eCommerce software as reported by Omniture®. This edition provides detailed Q4 2007 analysis across all key online retail metrics, charts performance during the five key periods of holiday selling, and provides retailers with actionable strategies and tactics for profitable year-round gifting.

"In a time when the retail sector showed only 4% growth, online selling continues to outperform," said Ken Burke, MarketLive Founder, Chairman, and Chief Evangelist. "Smart retailers used innovative shipping, gift guides, gift cards, and creative marketing strategies to drive record performance -- and MarketLive retailers performed at the top of the sector. Across the industry, online retailers grew holiday revenue by 19% from 2006 to 2007. MarketLive retailers grew revenue by 23% during the same period. We're thrilled with the performance of our retailers and look forward to their continued success."

The Performance Index details improved performance from the third quarter to the fourth quarter of 2007. While growth is expected when comparing non-peak to peak seasons, growth during the 2007 holiday season was dramatic. The 2007 holiday season statistics indicate that merchants effectively used holiday strategies to improve revenues and customer satisfaction. Top-line metrics include:

--  Overall Conversion Rates increased 18% from Q3 to Q4 2007
--  Engagement Rate (visit-to-cart ratio) improved 4% from Q3 to Q4 2007
--  Cart Abandonment rates dropped by 6% from Q3 to Q4 2007
    

The Performance Index indicates strength year-over-year as well.

--  Visits were up 33% from Q4 2006 to Q4 2007
--  Orders were up 19% from Q4 2006 to Q4 2007
--  Overall online revenue was up 23% from Q4 2006 to Q4 2007
    

Burke continued: "While our retailers did well this holiday season, we're also interested in helping them understand how to capitalize on seasonal fluctuations. Retailers can use event-driven strategies to maximize peak seasons throughout the year and sustain customer relationships over time."

This version of the Performance Index details tactics that worked in Q4 2007, and that can be adapted for year-round use. Specifically, retailers can leverage:

--  Innovative shipping: Shipping promotions were by far the most
    compelling to consumers in Q4 2007. Wise merchants offer timely discounts
    and clearly communicate shipping deadlines.
--  Time-based promotions: Discounts or promotions with deadlines
    encouraged consumers to buy now.
--  Gift Guides: Merchants who provided deeper gift guides with more
    recipient categories saw substantially better results.
--  Gift Cards: Industry-wide, gift card sales grew by 25% over 2006. The
    merchants that enjoyed strongest gift card results offered more than just a
    link to purchase them, but allowed online redemption and clearly
    communicated redemption policies.
--  Creative offers: Pre-packaged gift sets, innovative email marketing
    and promotions for holidays in any season are central to successful year-
    round gifting.
    

The MarketLive Intelligent Selling Best Practices and eCommerce Suite provide the foundation for retailers of all sizes to achieve optimal performance. The MarketLive Performance Index, the most comprehensive in the industry, is a unique source of forward-looking online retailing information. It's available FREE.

--  Download MarketLive Performance Index vol. 3:
    www.marketlive.com/vol3performance
--  Attend our FREE Performance Index webinar on February 28, 2008 at
    10:00 PST to learn from the experts.  Register here:
    www.marketlive.com/vol3webinar
    

About MarketLive

Since 1995, MarketLive, Inc. (www.marketlive.com) has provided enterprise-class eCommerce retail technology and services that help companies successfully sell goods and services online. Designed to meet the unique requirements of catalogers, retailers, direct marketers, and manufacturers, MarketLive® software and MarketLive's best practices-based the Intelligent Selling® methodology enable merchants to enhance their customers' experience online while dramatically improving acquisition, conversion, and retention rates. MarketLive is the most retail-targeted, fully featured, customizable eCommerce solution on the market today. MarketLive powers some of the most successful retail Web sites, including Boston Proper, Bon-Ton Stores, Stride Rite, and Trek.

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