From Retail Online Integration: A Carolina Rustica Forecast for 2011

From Retail Online Integration
2011 Cross-Channel Trends : Clear Skies Ahead: Recovery and Growth Forecasted for 2011
A panel of cross-channel retailers share their predictions for the year 

January 2011 By Meredith Cunningham

As we ring in a new year, many retailers are wondering what's in store for 2011. With an economy that's still bouncing back from the Great Recession, it's hard to predict the future (yet we're going to try anyway). For many retailers, 2010 proved to be a year of recovery. They're hoping to continue down that path again this year. To help you get a feel for what lies ahead, Retail Online Integration surveyed leaders in the cross-channel and e-commerce retail space in the fall of last year to get their predictions for 2011. Here's what we learned.

Marketing Best Practices for 2011
“Focus. It comes down to basics: What do you offer/sell at what price points so that you have a competitive advantage. Think about your competition as much as your customers. Rethink your business plan if you’re one of 100 other websites doing the same thing.”
— Richard Sexton , Carolina Rustica
“Understand the basic math behind your business. What’s your rebuy/retention rate? What’s your average yearly spend per customer? If you understand those, you understand how many new customers you need to fuel growth and hit your one year-, two year-, five year-sales goals. What’s the lifetime value of those new customers? How much can you invest in a new customer? How do these numbers differ between channel, media and program? Risk is unavoidable, but understanding the variables for the growth of your business allow you to take much more educated risks — and win more often.”
— Scott Drayer , Paul Fredrick
“Look for as many ways to extend your reach as you can. Don’t get fixated on one method or another. Innovate, try new things.”
— Brad Wolansky , The Golf Warehouse

A Positive Outlook
Richard Sexton , president of Carolina Rustica, a cross-channel retailer specializing in handcrafted iron and wood furniture, echoed Chesman's sentiments. "We're finishing up this year at about 30 percent over last year, and expect to see gains next year of about 20 percent to 
30 percent." the entire article here