Internet Retailer Conference Exhibit (IRCE) is the largest e-commerce conference for retailers and is widely known as the “one-stop shop for e-retailers”. With a jam-packed agenda of over 130 educational sessions and 600+ vendors showcasing solutions to help streamline your e-commerce initiatives, the event can be a little overwhelming, if not intimidating.
Here’s a check-list to help you navigate through all the options available at IRCE and get the most out of your investment.
Identifying your objectives and what you would like to walk away from the event with will help you to stay on-point and not get distracted by the many things that IRCE has to offer. Some things to think about when setting your goals for the conference:
- What direction is your organization moving in e-commerce? What would be good to learn as you embark on the path?
- Technologies to investigate for current or upcoming projects/initiatives
- Networking with other attendees—what would you like to learn from their experiences?
Mapping out Sessions & Workshops
Now that you have identified the kind of information you would like to learn at IRCE, check out the different workshops and sessions happening. Select the ones that would help you gain insights to some of the goals you have set. Grab a printable IRCE agenda or view the online version to see the latest sessions.
Still feeling a bit overwhelmed and not sure where to start or look? Don’t worry, IRCE offers a Jump-Start Guide where you simply answer a few short survey questions and receive a complimentary guide composed just for you.
Two sessions inRiver is looking forward to are “Break Point: The Reality of US e-Commerce Today” in the Strategies for Top Executives Track taking place on Wednesday, June 6 at 10:30 am, and “Sneak Peek into Shoppers’ Shifting Preferences at Every Touchpoint” in the Omnichannel Leadership Track on Wednesday, June 6 at 11:00 am.
Technology / Vendor Research
With over 600 technology and consulting organizations exhibiting at IRCE, there is no way you can speak with them all. This is where the advanced search function on the IRCE exhibitor list comes in handy. With a simple check-box list to choose different categories and countries, you can start to narrow down the list of vendors you would like to meet at the event.
To help you effectively manage your time, take a look at the interactive exhibit hall floor plan to identify where the vendors are located that you would like to ensure you speak to. Hint: inRiver is booth 639.
Are there certain companies that you want to focus on to learn more about their solutions/service offerings? Schedule a meeting with them on-site. This helps ensure that you have some undivided attention by one of their gurus and get specific questions answered in real-time.
Not sure who you would like to meet with, or just keeping your eye out for new technologies? Try the Matchmaking/Exhibit Hall Tours organized by IRCE. It’s an amazing resource to optimize your time.
Learning from others in the industry is still one of the most powerful aspects of a conference like IRCE. The event offers various opportunities to meet fellow e-commerce professionals through coffee breaks, lounges, cocktail receptions, and more. Don’t pass up the opportunity to start chatting up a fellow attendee and see what they are currently working on, or some of the challenges and obstacles they faced. This is first-person research at its finest.
Reach out to your current contacts or customers and meet with them at the event. Do a shout-out on LinkedIn and let them know you are attending IRCE and want to connect there. You can even identify others you may want to connect with at IRCE by searching the event hashtag, #IRCE18, on LinkedIn and Twitter.
The power of in-person events is the networking. Online learning is great, but in-person delivers countless opportunities to engage.
Bringing it all Together
Pre-event planning plays a key role in getting the most out of your time and investment in IRCE. Not only will you be able to come back with some actionable intel from the conference, but you will get your creative juices flowing.
Use this pre-event checklist to effectively navigate and prioritize your time at IRCE. Save hours of research and trial and error as a first-time attendee with a little planning. Even if this isn’t your first IRCE, maximize your time, opportunities and learning with this list, and have fun a little fun too.
Chelsea Camille, Campaign & Alliance Marketing Manager
Chelsea Camille is a B2B revenue marketer with over 10 years’ experience in the technology space. Before she joined the innovative world of technology, Chelsea belonged to the world of fashion, helping companies reach consumers on the subliminal level through placements, colors, etc.