Peter Boldt-Christmas, Senior Strategist: People of Pattern

Clea Boyd-Eedle

June 30, 2022

Pattern’s success can be attributed to our incredible team, harnessing the skills of some of the world’s brightest, most data-driven, and partner-obsessed minds. Employing more than 1,200 people across 10 global locations, Pattern’s operations are a powerhouse of innovation and acceleration. Our #PeopleofPattern blog series shines a spotlight on our people - their responsibilities, achievements, and why they choose to work at Pattern. This week we spoke with Peter Boldt-Christmas, Senior Strategist in Pattern’s London office.

Could you tell me a bit about your role and experience working at Pattern?

I worked with Practicology before it got acquired by Pattern, so I’ve been with the business for five and a bit years now and have always been part of the strategy team. My role, being part of the consulting arm, is to provide strategic support and services to our brand partners as well as clients that would perhaps not work for our marketplace model, which means that we can work with tech companies, research companies, government bodies, and more. Anything from small family businesses all the way up to global industry leaders.

What the consulting team does is provide advice and strategic support. This includes UX/CX use on a client’s website, benchmarking their DTC or omnichannel experience versus competitors’, and analysing how they can work with their online partners more efficiently. We also offer support for international expansion, coordinating with our teams in Asia, Australia, and the US, to work on these sorts of global projects and help our clients find the largest opportunities.

We also provide playbooks for Amazon, including 1P advice, and organisational structure evaluations, i.e. do you have the right capabilities in your team to conduct ecommerce in the best way.

What are some of the most exciting projects you’ve undertaken whilst working in the strategy team?

Since I’ve joined, there’s only been about three to four months where we haven’t been involved in a Google project, so they are definitely among my favourite clients. We’ve done quite a few things with them, and they are a very engaging and interesting client to work with. Thought pieces that utilise our strategic thinking in general are really satisfying, especially when we see our advice being taken onboard.

Our benchmarking projects tackle so many different markets; we’ve done Europe, the Middle East, Australia, Asia and the US as well. It involves a lot of different facets and helps us better understand how the proposition works in different markets and also consumer expectations. This is really interesting to me from a personal perspective, but also really helps us as a company to truly become a global partner who can help brands with very specialised markets. Travelling there and exploring how they shop in the first person is really useful, and brings a lot of life to the recommendations we come up with.

I also really enjoy working with smaller companies! For example we worked with a small, family-owned, bathroom tile retailer based in the UK. Clients that are really engaged and take what we say to heart, those are always exciting, regardless of the size of the company or the industry they’re in.

That’s great to hear. Why do you choose to work at Pattern?

Firstly, it’s really interesting to be part of a big, global, growing business, having all that support and reach that we’re seeing now. Having the marketplaces proposition is also really exciting. People are always really impressed when you say you work for Pattern.

Secondly, the exposure to such a wide array of different types of businesses is really exciting. I personally don’t like too much of a routine, I like a new challenge and I enjoy the fact that you’re working on a project for a couple of months, that wraps up and then you’re onto something else entirely. Sometimes it’s sad that projects end, because they can be really engaging, but it also means that you’re never doing the same task and you never get too comfortable. Yes, a lot of the work we do in strategy is repeated but you get exposure to everything from global brands, like Google or Moët, all the way to start-ups or mom-and-pop shops. We work across such a vast range, from dog food to walkers for people with disabilities. So many different types of products and businesses, each exciting in their own way.

It’s also the different types of people that you interact with inside the businesses we work with. If I were working for a big consultancy, I don’t believe I’d have the same exposure to the heads, directors, and C-suite executives as young as I did when I started working at Pattern. We get a lot of valuable facetime with really incredible people.

What has been the most rewarding part of working at Pattern for you?

I love to see the team succeed. We’ve had our ups and downs over the years and consulting work can be quite ebb and flow, there are times when we’re not as busy, and other times we’re working really hard together to get projects completed. Seeing how everyone in our team band together in these times is amazing. It doesn’t matter if you’re a director, senior, junior, level strategist, everyone pulls their own weight and everyone is really approachable and does great work. That’s what I find the most rewarding.

In terms of the client side, what’s great is when clients come back for more because they see the value in the work you’ve completed. The long-term clients are the ones that I find the most rewarding because it shows that in terms of business development, the best type of business development is good quality consulting work. If you do it well, and it’s proven, they will always come back for more.

Last question, why would you recommend working at Pattern?

If you like working in a fast-paced environment, where no day is exactly the same as the one before, no client is exactly the same as the last, then Pattern is a very exciting place to work. It’s hands-on, but if you like variety, a challenge, and applying your thinking to different types of businesses but continuing the thread of what it means to provide a true, effective ecommerce experience, it can be very rewarding. The people who work at Pattern are also great, there’s a real sense of camaraderie. You also get the opportunity to work with really engaging, exciting brands.

We’re growing our team at Pattern!

If you're looking to start a career in ecommerce or even if you're a seasoned professional and want to learn more about our exciting opportunities, check out our open positions there.

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Sept 27, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 27th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon drives renewable energy push with 71 new projects Amazon is planning to add 2.7 gigawatts of clean energy capacity through a couple of new projects as the company attempts to use 100% renewable energy by 2025. The ecommerce business will soon have a total of 329 renewable energy projects, generating 50,000 gigawatt hours of clean energy, which is equivalent to powering 4.6 million US homes every year. [Read more on Reuters](https://www.reuters.com/business/sustainable-business/amazon-drives-renewable-energy-push-with-71-new-projects-2022-09-21/) Amazon launches Prime Early Access Sale Amazon is launching a new 2-day shopping event for its Prime members only, beginning on the 11th of October. Across 15 countries, Prime customers will have access to the shopping event, with thousands of deals on offer globall, ranging from fashion to electronics to essentials. The event has the purpose of giving Prime users the chance to spread the cost of items over the winter months, 6 weeks ahead of Black Friday. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/26/prime-early-access-sale/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Shopify unveils new localisation tool Shopify is launching a new localisation tool, called Translate & Adapt, which works with Shopify Markets to offer localisation for sellers who are looking to expand into new markets. The tool translates a user’s online store into different languages, including product pages and information pages. Merchants are also able to create different shipping terms for each market using the new tool, which allows international expansion and offers a more localised consumer experience, unveiling new potential. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/shopify-launches-new-localisation-tool/) Etsy is set to invest hundreds of millions into its marketing platform Etsy CEO claims that the company is on route to spend more than $570 million USD on marketing this year. Even during a time of macroeconomic pressure, inflation and rising interest rates, the company is preparing itself and its sellers for the upcoming holiday season and is focused on retaining interest from buyers. [Read more on Yahoo News](https://uk.news.yahoo.com/etsy-600-million-on-marketing-ceo-154054219.html) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Meta looks to cut costs by 10% in the coming months Meta employees are facing job redundancies as the company plans to cut its costs by 10% over the next few months. Meta reported a 22% YoY increase in costs and expenses, totalling over $20 billion USD. The cuts are expected to come in the form of job redundancies as a result of department reorganisations rather than formal layoffs. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/22/meta-to-slash-costs-by-10-over-coming-months/) DHL teams up with Quadient to offer smart locker deliveries in the UK DHL and tech company, Quadient, have partnered to offer smart lockers parcel pick-up throughout the UK. The new contactless, secure locker stations will give recipients more choice and flexibility to receive their parcels at a time and location best suited to them. The partnership plans to install 500 locker stations across the country by the end of 2022. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/21/dhl-partners-with-quadient-to-offer-smart-locker-delivery/) The online fashion market is set to be worth nearly $170 billion USD in 2025 The European online fashion retail market is set to grow 50% by 2025, with an online turnover of $170 billion USD, which is 33% of the retail branch’s total. Cross-border marketplaces prove to be the largest drivers of this growth, with online websites and apps like Vinted largely pushing the market’s online growth. Zalando recently became the largest cross-border fashion retailer/marketplace, responsible for 11.7% of the online market’s share. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/online-fashion-market-worth-e175-billion-in-2025/)
Sept 26, 2022

Top 5 Ways to Prepare for Peak with Google Ads

Peak season is almost upon us and with all signs pointing to it starting earlier than ever, with Christmas gifting searches now ramping up in August and September, it’s time to start preparing for peak. In this article, we’re sharing our top five tips for planning and preparing for peak season with Google Ads and the strategies required to get your Paid Search ready so you can drive success over this crucial period.

1. Go Early

In 2021, gifting search terms started increasing in popularity in August. The general trend is that people are looking, researching and weighing their options early, so it’s best to start your Paid activity early to ensure that you’re capturing that early research traffic. This will help drive revenue alongside aiding those consumers who are in their research phase.

From 2020 to 2021, spend during Cyber Week actually only rose 2% but in the weeks leading up to it, it increased by 16%. However, Cyber Week is still the biggest period during the latter half of the year, accounting for 23% of all online spend by consumers over peak. Being prepared and starting early will help you to maximise your time during this period.

2. Get Ready for Privacy Changes

 According to Google, 48% of global consumers have stopped buying or using a service due to privacy concerns. Privacy is front of mind when consumers are shopping online and we know that Google is phasing out 3rd party cookies in 2023. This is going to make it much harder to track users online and it’s something that brands need to think about this now – waiting isn’t an option.

From a Google Ads point of view, you want to ensure you have set up the Google Ads tag across your site and have enabled ‘Enhanced Conversions’, which ensures all conversions are tracked and allows you to monitor other actions such as ‘Add to Cart.’ This is relatively easy to set up, especially if you use ‘Google Tag Manager’.

It’s also vitally important that you build up your first-party data during this time as this is data you own and it can be used when targeting consumers that have provided your brand with their email address. Pattern’s own experience shows that by segmenting and using first-party data, you can see a 10% improvement in revenue and ROI.

3. Ensure Consumers Can Discover your Brand

A full-funnel approach is now more important than ever as consumers become more discerning and have more choices than ever of where to shop.

Pattern has seen success with Google Ads’ ‘Discovery Campaigns’ (image-based ads that appear on Google platforms such as Gmail and the Google app), which have driven success both from a traffic and revenue perspective.

The performance of these campaigns is significantly enhanced by adopting a segmented and nuanced approach to first-party data and incorporating these into your campaigns. Other options for a full-funnel approach include YouTube and testing bidding on keywords that are more representative of the research phase. (e.g. ‘best baby clothes’ for a baby clothes brand)

4. Get Moving with Performance Max

Earlier this year, Google announced that they were moving away from Smart Shopping and launched Performance Max. This is a new campaign type that incorporates features and placements from Smart Shopping but expands them onto other platforms such as Gmail but also alternative creative options, such as images and videos.

Since Google has already started automatically upgrading Smart Shopping campaigns to Performance Max, expect to see some fluctuations in the first 2 weeks following the switch over but results generally seem positive. We recommend upgrading sooner rather than later to limit any potential impact to peak period.

5. Flight Budgets Accordingly

Peak period will be even more competitive than in 2021 and you’ll need your budgets to support this period, we recommend boosting budgets in October to start capturing that early peak traffic. As we enter November and the Cyber Period, start early and make sure you are capturing those consumers looking for early bargains, ensuring you are being nimble in your optimisations and reacting to the data that you are seeing.

Overall, peak period is vital to help drive your sales and by preparing early, you will see strong results and drive success for your brand. If you want to discuss how your brand can navigate this next peak period, contact us to discuss your options with our performance team now.

Sept 20, 2022

4 Ecommerce Consultant Must-Haves

Entering the ecommerce landscape is a huge undertaking for any brand—it usually requires a large investment in resources and expertise to really be successful. Any brand can quickly get in over their heads trying to navigate the nuances of SEO, fulfillment and logistics, distribution control, listing optimization, and meeting the numerous other requirements and administrative tasks to show up well on marketplaces. 

Unfortunately, because it’s so easy for third party, gray market, and unauthorized sellers to obtain and sell products online, many brands find themselves pressured to execute an ecommerce plan without the right resources to succeed on marketplaces and their other channels.

So, for brands looking to enter the ecommerce space or improve their current and future performance, it makes sense to partner with an ecommerce consultant.

Pattern’s global presence and proven success with hundreds of brands has allowed us to develop highly effective ecommerce consulting services. We can guide your brand to navigate issues both large and small in marketplaces worldwide. To maximize your ecommerce efforts, you’ll need to understand what an ecommerce consultant does and how to select one who drives the right value for your brand and products. 

What is an Ecommerce Consultant?

An ecommerce consultant is a specialist in the ecommerce space who can give you personalized guidance on how to market your products and grow their presence on digital marketplaces.

An ecommerce consultant should be able to analyze your brand, audience, category, opportunity, and current roadblocks and help you understand how to utilize your resources (or what resources are missing) to be most effective in capturing your opportunities in the ecommerce space.

Not sure how to evaluate a consultant? Here are 4 key attributes to look for as you make your choice.

1. Brand Obsession/Specialization/Passion

At Pattern, we prioritize brand obsession for a reason—we know that a brand-centered mindset makes a crucial difference in the outcomes and results our partners achieve. So in our experience, when you begin your search for an ecommerce consultant, it’s important to look for a partner who is specialized in ecommerce, invested in the product, and passionate about helping brands build and improve their strategies. Typically, this means finding someone that consults exclusively for ecommerce marketplaces, rather than choosing a consultant who offers many different services. 

2. Proven Results

It’s also important to avoid choosing a consulting partner who can’t deliver the right experience for your brand. The best indication of whether your potential consultant can do that is to review their history, data, and results with other brands. Ask if they’ve helped others in your selling category, if they’ve solved specific issues your brand is facing, and why they feel you are a good fit. The key is to leave the conversation feeling confident that you understand your consultants’ capabilities and whether or not they match up with your needs.

3. Wide Range of Marketplace Expertise

It’s best to pick a consultant who knows how to guide a brand onto and through multiple marketplaces worldwide. You’ll want to take a look at your long-term strategy and think about the regions and platforms you’re currently on and where you might want to take your brand in the future. If your consultant is truly great at what they do, they’ll be able to help you perform well enough with your current product roadmap that it’ll be a no-brainer to expand your presence at the right time.

4. Network of Resources

The most effective partnership with an ecommerce consultant will be able to give you both recommendations and point you to solutions for making those changes in your planning, processes, and execution. Your time and money is valuable, so you want to make sure that you’re spending it as efficiently as possible as you follow your consultant’s advice. So, before you commit to an ecommerce consultant, ask about the resources and concrete solutions they typically recommend to the brands they work with.

Achieve Your Ecommerce Goals With Pattern

Finding an ecommerce consultant that checks the boxes can be a difficult task. At Pattern, our entire focus and drive centers around giving brands the tools and resources they need to succeed on domestic and international ecommerce marketplaces. 

With over 100 global ecommerce consultants across 10 global offices, we have the right tools to partner with brands across the world to achieve better ecommerce success. We give specialized advice, then make sure our partners have all the adequate SEO, social media, CRM, Amazon multi-channel fulfillment services, and ecommerce outsourcing services they need.

Interested in ecommerce consulting services? Set up a call here to learn what Pattern can do for your brand on global marketplaces.