Macy's CFO Confirms Merged Channel Trial To Expand Next Year

A Macy's trial—limited to Florida—of a system where online databases can be accessed from in-store POS terminals has been "working very well" and will be rolled out to the $25 billion chain's 800 stores by the end of next year, Macy's CFO Karen Hoguet said at a recent analyst call. "I think we have only begun to realize the potential of the multi-channel integration. I think the potential that still is yet to be completely tapped is again integrating it more with the stores," she said.

The technique is not new, and Macy's is certainly not alone among major retailers testing it. But the Macy's results are interestingly favorable. "Customers are increasingly using both vehicles to shop. Sometimes they are pre-shopping online and going to the store to try things on. Other times they walk through the store, they see something they want, don’t have time to stop, go home and order it online," Hoguet said. "So I think we are going to see this tremendous growth continue. We’re beginning to roll [the system] out to some of the Midwestern stores as well as Herald Square now, and we will continue to roll it out in 2010."