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We’re working with Shoe Carnival in their search for a Director of Ecommerce in Evansville, IN. Shoe Carnival is a chain of over 417 footwear stores located across 35 states. Combining value pricing with a highly entertaining store format, Shoe Carnival is a leading retailer of name brand and private label footwear for the entire family.
HARRY’S COMMENTS: This is the fifth search we’ve done for Shoe Carnival. These are wonderful people, and Evansville is awesome. (Yes, I’ve actually been there.)
First things first: Evansville rocks.
The home of rocker John Mellancamp, Evansville is the third largest city in Indiana and it lies within a 200 mile radius of four major metropolitan cities: Indianapolis, Nashville, Louisville, and St. Louis. It’s not in the middle of nowhere. It’s the heart of the midwest — and it has America’s second lowest cost of living.
At a high level, here’s what’s up:
“The Director of Ecommerce is responsible for daily management of the Shoe Carnival eCommerce site and mobile touchpoints, managing a team of business and web merchant professionals to ensure that revenue, customer experience, and other KPI’s and objectives are met. This senior position will play a critical role in creating a best-in-class ecommerce experience and driving exponential growth over the next 5+ years.”
At a deeper level, here’s what you’re stepping into …
The US shoe store industry includes ~25K stores with annual revenue of about $37 billion. Demand is driven by new styles and personal income. Profitability hinges on smart merchandising and competitive pricing. National chains like Shoe Carnival have advantages in purchasing, distribution, and marketing — while regional and local chains compete by stocking specialty products and localizing customer service.
Just 50 companies account for 80% of industry’s revenue.
Shoe Carnival eclipsed $1 billion in sales last year, up from $800 million just 3 years ago. The retailer has momentarily paused store growth while they implement a world-class CRM strategy, and expects to begin looking at new store opportunities in the next 12-18 months.
The company has nearly tripled in size in the past 13 years, and every major metric is headed in the right direction: Number of stores; Sales; Revenue growth; number of states with stores; number of employees; and more. Shoe Carnival is poised for growth over the next 5-years, and Ecommerce will be a major part of that strategy.
Shoe Carnival has NO DEBT and plenty of cash in the bank.
In addition to selling famous name brands, Shoe Carnival offers private label products. The firm prides itself on being a family footwear retailer primarily to the mid-market, and its “open inventory” concept has allowed it to differentiate itself with self-service value backed by incredible staff support.
Shoe Carnival’s stores are famously interactive, often featuring an in-store emcee on a microphone announcing specials, engaging guests with crazy trivia questions to give away merchandise, and doing different things to interact with customers to personalize the experience and make it just plain fun.
This shopping-as-entertainment concept has worked like a charm because consumers WANT a gratifying shopping experience (duh!) with a retailer that actually gets smarter about their needs and values each time they touch it. Omnichannel is the foundation of SC’s value prop, and digital marketing is a critical enabler.
Think of this role as a GM of Ecommerce.
This role centers on running the day-to-day of ecommerce and owning SCVL’s ecommerce P&L. Ecommerce is hugely important to the company, and we are looking for a proven marketing oriented technologist to manage its digital business.
Given that SCVL’s bench is loaded with great marketing talent, your primary responsibility will be to identify opportunities to improve conversion and make analytically biased decisions regarding UX, mobile first omnichannel CX, vendor management, and much more. The firm’s new ecommerce platform has been live for a year, but it’s UX needs to be optimized for conversion.
That’d fall to your team to make happen.
Additionally, you’ll find yourself working with SCVL’s merchant teams to optimize the firm’s online assortment. And, as is the challenge with so many apparel retailers, your team will need to personalize the experience to suit the assortment.
I could go on.
Bottom line: Your job is to GROW THE BUSINESS by getting the right offer on the right product in front of the right customer at the right place on the right device at the right time.
Easy to say; Tricky to do.
And on the issues and initiatives that are truly multichannel in nature — you won’t be developing strategies in a silo. You’ll be working with world class executives from other departments, trying to build the best possible customer experience. In that sense, ShoeCarnival.com is just one part of a larger puzzle.
You won’t believe how much we know about this search …
My partner, Allan Seibert, and I spent a ton of time on the phone with the client teasing out exactly what you’ll need to KNOW and DO to hit the ground running in this role. Some of the things we can share with highly qualified candidates include …
- The “real” background requirements for this position, along with the top five things all resumes MUST have to be considered for the role.
- The top five problems that exist due to this position being open. These are the little brush fires you will be expected to put out during your first month on the job. Every ecommerce job has these — and this one’s no different.
- What your average day / week will look like in this role. There’s what you read in the standard ecommerce job posting … then there’s reality. We’ve got the reality.
- The leading and lagging KPI’s that will determine your success in this role. In a nutshell: How you keep score.
- The major projects you’ll need to complete by Day 100 to be considered a home-run in this position. We’ve got the lowdown on how you can plug-and-play and drive REAL value in this ecommerce job.
We have a massive amount of proprietary intel to share with qualified candidates. Our industry research for this assignment exceeds 50 pages! Be sure to TEXT Allan Seibert at (706) 318-1196 for this info. Or simply use the email link when you apply for the role below.
Primary Duties & Responsibilities:
- Defines the vision, business plan, and key metric objectives for Shoe Carnival’s eCommerce channel
- Interacts with and coordinates multiple business functions to incorporate eCommerce activities and requirements into key business functions
- Identifies, evaluates and engages external vendors to support eCommerce operations where appropriate and manages vendor relationships including contract negotiation and renewals
- Manage the ecommerce SDLC in conjunction with our development partners, creating agile workflows and processes to drive rapid and efficient development and site improvement in support of business objectives
- Oversee the end-to-end vision and design of the Shoe Carnival ecommerce experience, ensuring that customer needs are met with engaging, intuitive experiences and functionality
- Manage the product merchandising activities of the Shoe Carnival ecommerce experience with the goal of driving business growth in support of our ecommerce and omnichannel merchandising strategies.
- Continue to build and develop a talented team of business, UX, and web merchandising professionals
Requirements (knowledge, skills, and abilities):
- Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience required; MBA preferred
- 10+ years’ experience in retail ecommerce website functional or user experience management; 3+ years leading a retail ecommerce team
- Strong understanding of ecommerce funnel flows and interactions, including understanding of impacts of digital marketing channel mix and activities
- Proven success in setting and adjusting ecommerce web strategies to drive exponential growth
- An entrepreneurial spirit and drive with the ability to work in a fast paced and dynamic organization
- Excellent communication and project management skills