LAS VEGAS: Brands seeking to connect with consumers across multiple touchpoints should consider exploring the potential of “d-commerce”, Carissa Ganelli, Chief Digital Officer at restaurant chain Subway, has argued.

Ganelli highlighted this topic during an event held by MediaLink and the Chief Digital Officer Global Forum at CES 2018 in Las Vegas.

“We had ecommerce, then m-commerce. Now, [it’s] d-commerce: Distributed commerce,” she said. (For more details, read WARC’s in-depth report: How Subway is approaching “distributed commerce”.)

And “d-commerce”, for Ganelli, will require brands to offer streamlined purchasing tools across a variety of necessary touchpoints. “How do we distribute the commerce opportunities in every place that a consumer is?” she asked.

“Whether it is on social media, whether it is at CES, how can we make it as easy as possible to get a Subway sandwich into the mouth of the consumer?”

In part, the impetus for solving that problem is a matter of ensuring that Subway retains its relevance with younger consumers who have grown increasingly accustomed to on-demand digital interaction.

“The thing that’s keeping me awake at night is: How do we turn a 52-year-old company where people have to buy sandwiches in-store into a digital-first company?” Ganelli said.

But deeper insights complicate the challenges of d-commerce – not least of which is the fact that so many hungry shoppers seek out tasty food options in the run up to lunchtime every day.

“Forty-three percent of consumers have no idea of what they’re eating within an hour of ordering lunch,” said Ganelli. “And over 65% of them check their phone to help inform that decision.

“They’re on social media, they’re on Google [searching for] ‘lunch near me’, and all that kind of stuff. We need to be there to help influence that purchase. Then, once we are top of mind, we need to make it as easy as possible for them to order that sandwich.

“What we want to do is have you come in one more time. It’s not like, ‘Who has never eaten at a Subway restaurant?’ We just want you to come in one more time. It’s a frequency play in major markets.”

Sourced from WARC