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OLLY’s Jennifer Peters on Prioritizing Change for a Growing CPGAfter spending years on the agency side helping brands spin up online stores, Jennifer Peters decided it was time to work full-time on just one brand. As Direct to Consumer Manager for OLLY, Peters jumped in right after OLLY became part of the Unilever family – giving her a brand with a start-up mentality, and all the resources of a worldwide CPG.
As D2C manager, Peters is responsible for every aspect of that part of the business: website, marketing inventory, payment gateways and more. Peters says as OLLY matures, her team has to constantly re-evaluate their strategy. (8:05) “A lot of things that worked two years ago, they don’t work anymore,” Peters explained. “I think one of the tougher pieces of that is figuring out where the issues are and then prioritizing them.”
That means looking at logistics as the company grows, as well as how they offer their product to shoppers. “We’re in the vitamin and supplement segment, so subscriptions are a huge part of our business.” For OLLY, that meant changing partners. A decision Peter said was tough, but necessary to continue to grow. Optimizing what has become a very important part of the business is ongoing. “I can give you a great example,” Peters said. “Right now, all of our subscriptions are quarterly. That’s great. I’m sure this was, at some point, a decision made around shipping costs, and it probably made a lot of sense. But right now, especially with the economy being the way it is, there’s a lot of uncertainty – lowering that barrier of entry is really important.” (20:15)
One aspect of how OLLY operates that Peters particularly likes is the structure of the ecommerce team. Peters handles all D2C, someone else is in charge of omni-channel and a third person focuses on Amazon. No one is in competition, and Peters says it allows her to focus on what is best for her channel. The harder part, according to Peters, is connecting the dots between an extensive brick-and-mortar business and the behavior of online customers. Peters and her team don’t have visibility into data on shoppers who buy in physical stores, or on a Target.com, for instance. “It’s harder to connect the dots when you have customers all over the place, but you still have to strive to meet them where they are.” (12:00)
Right now, Peters and her team are focused on future-proofing OLLY’s online store, prioritizing development costs vs revenue impact, A/B testing the full site for better learning, and also personalizing the customer journey. After a career of creating multiple sites for many different brands, Peters says she has found her sweet spot with OLLY. “I think my biggest concern at coming to OLLY was that it was going to be boring after continually just working on brand after brand after brand, but it has not been boring one single day.”
Learn more about the ecommerce experience at OLLY by listening to this edition of Digital River’s Commerce Connect podcast, here or on your favorite podcast platform.
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