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  • IBM acquiring Tealeaf Technology to help retailers create 'seamless' mobile, online experience

If predictions come true about global online commerce hitting $1 trillion by 2014, and mobile commerce climbing to $200 billion by 2015, retailers must find a way to provide seamless online and mobile experiences to their customers. IBM is hoping to cash in on that need with its new partnership with Tealeaf Technology Inc., a provider of customer experience analytics software that helps organizations gain intelligence about consumer trends in the digital marketplace.

Financial details were not disclosed, but the agreement allows IBM to extend its Smarter Commerce initiative by adding qualitative analytics capabilities that provide chief marketing officers and e-commerce and customer service professionals with real-time and automated insights into online customer buying experiences across online and mobile devices, according to a company press release. As a result, organizations can gain actionable insight that allows them to improve customer support, transform site usability, tailor marketing campaigns and increase online conversion rates.

Tealeaf has more than 450 customers worldwide including 30 of the Fortune 100 companies. These customers are predominantly in financial services, travel, retail and communications services.

Organizations today are struggling to meet the demands created by the rapidly shifting buying patterns of their customers, who increasingly turn to online, social and mobile channels to gather information, make purchases and receive services. This new digital marketplace requires companies to be highly responsive to their customers' behaviors in order to both compete and grow. The opportunity to better understand a customer's experience on websites and mobile devices presents a major competitive advantage for businesses, according to the release.

Tealeaf provides a full suite of customer experience management software, which records and analyzes a customer's website and mobile interactions. As a result, marketers can spot patterns and address issues in website and mobile application design and provide a more streamlined online customer experience that leads to improved revenue, customer satisfaction, customer service productivity and profitability.

For example, using Tealeaf software, the CMO of an online retailer can identify weaknesses in a recent mobile marketing campaign by spotting instances and replaying scenarios that triggered customer sessions to end prematurely. As a result, marketers can improve the customer's experience by addressing usability, site design or ease of use and reach out to consumers to recapture their interest, Rebecca Ward, Chairman and CEO of Tealeaf, said in the release.

"Tealeaf's patented technology can be deployed into a business's current environment with no needed modifications so they begin capturing customer data and delivering optimal experiences immediately," she said. "IBM Smarter Commerce is the perfect fit for Tealeaf and further establishes IBM as the leading partner for businesses looking to succeed in today's fast evolving environment."

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