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Trends In Retail 2018

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Pop-up stores allow retailers to wow consumers in small spaces with limited investment, and malls increasingly bring in non-traditional and multicultural retailers to differentiate and enliven their offerings. Platform, a Los Angeles-based shopping center, requires potential tenants to demonstrate the unique experiences they will provide. Nordstrom, meanwhile, has launched Nordstrom Local, a clothing “store” that instead of merchandise, showcases personal stylists, same-day ordering, on-site tailoring, and experiential amenities including manicures and a variety of beverages to relax with.

Fetchr, a delivery service in Dubai, uses your smartphone to determine your location and deliver your goods to wherever you are. Walmart and leading supermarket chains continue to expand their online ordering/in-store pickup options. When on-demand services are available, the customer designates a pickup time, then pulls into stations with kiosks where associates are standing by to load the groceries (some may even have treats on-hand for your kids and furry friends).

Westin Hotels helped lead the way with RunWESTIN™, a New Balance-sponsored program of scenic three- and five-mile running routes available to hotel guests. Lululemon, a yoga clothing specialty retailer, offers yoga classes and running clinics, while Williams-Sonoma provides in-store cooking classes.

Companies like Saks are offering consumers a single point of contact though a new company, Salesfloor.net. In-store associates can recommend and sell their clients products online through a storefront application.

Personal stylists are no longer available only at high-end fashion retailers. Stitch Fix  a subscription service (subscriptions are, in fact, optional), it differentiates itself by using data analysis to understand each customer and deliver apparel tailored to his or her personal style.

Best Buy’s Secret To Success

Best Buy have survived in spite of analysts’ predictions that Amazon would eat them for lunch. What’s Best Buy’s secret? According to CEO Hubert Joly, the firm has beat Wall Street’s expectations by matching Amazon’s prices, turning brick & mortar stores into showcases, providing new shipping and delivery options, quietly cutting costs, and training staff to consistently deliver a better customer experience. Every brand and retailer needs to think about the basics as they implement the trend-based strategies presented here. Great tech and people delivering service with passion is a must-have combination for thriving in the experience economy.

 

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Retailers That Could Go Bankrupt

Toys R Us —-the nearly $12 billion toy seller the third-largest retailer in history to go bankrupt.Toys R Us bankruptcy —  the third-largest in retail history — did not happen in a vacuum.

Payless, Gymboree, rue21 and True Religion have all successfully exited Chapter 11 this year with healthier-looking structures.

Lands’ End

While the retailer’s catalog is still doing well, it’s suffering from an association with Sears
Credit: Lands’ End

With hundreds of store closures and lackluster sales, Sears could soon be gone for good
Credit: Wikimedia Commons user Thivierr
Nine West

Lackluster performance and a high debt load are haunting this retailer
Credit: Nine West Facebook pag

Bon-Ton

Some suppliers have demanded stricter terms from Bon-Ton.
Credit: flickr: MikeKalasnik

Claire’s Stores

Claire’s has “exhausted” many of its refinancing options, Debtwire says.
Credit: Geograp

Neiman Marcus

Neiman Marcus could still turn around its business, but some analysts aren’t sold on the possibility.
Credit: Wikimedia

99 Cents Only

The space that 99 Cents operates in is getting even more competitive
Credit: wikimedia

J. Crew

It’s been a tough year for J. Crew, with several executive departures and a high debt load
Credit: Flickr user epicharmus

Soon You Can Purchase On Instagram

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US-based retail brands—including Kate Spade, JackThreads, and Warby Parker—will start posting interactive photos to Instagram and allow the items to be purchased in the featured image. Each image will feature a “tap to view” callout in the lower left-hand side; tap it to reveal the name and price of the products featured in the photo (Instagram supports up to five tags). Tap a tag to open a more detailed view in another window. If you want it just click “Shop Now,” at which point you’ll be redirected to a browser view, where you can add items to your cart and check out

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Innovative Technology Allows Consumers Access to Products Worldwide

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Consumers are no longer limited to the product selection at their local store or even in their own country; Nearly sixty percent (57%) of global survey respondents have made an online purchase in the past six months from an overseas online retailer.

India is one country on the leading edge of the mobile trend. A few online retailers in India have moved from mobile first to mobile only. The shift toward mobile shopping is of course not just happening in emerging markets. In the U.S., IBM reported that mobile devices accounted for about 57% of all online shopping traffic this past Black Friday, the busiest shopping day of the year in the country, up 15% over the same period in 2014.

As technology and the retail landscape rapidly evolve, payment practices are also changing. More than half of respondents who say they shopped online during the past six months paid with a traditional credit card (53%), but roughly four-in-10 used a digital payment system such as PayPal (43%), debit card (39%) or direct debit from their bank account (38%).Cash on delivery is also popular in many other developing markets, including Nigeria (76%), the Philippines (73%), Russia (70%), United Arab Emirates (68%), Saudi Arabia (59%), Colombia (57%) and Thailand (56%). Consumers are looking overseas to purchase authentic foreign brands, often at lower prices than they can find in their home country.

Retailers To Spend $2.5 billion On IoT-Related Technologies By 2020

Retailers are planning to spend  $2.5 billion on IoT-related technologies such as Bluetooth-equipped beacons and radio frequency ID tags (RFID)devices. This is about four times more than the $670 million expected to be spent this year.

This is according to a new Juniper Research study that suggests retailers may be on the cutting edge of the IoT’s impact on businesses. The study notes that by 2020, as much as 70 percent of purchased IoT hardware won’t be consumer-centric, with the segment driven by business IoT spending pushing the IoT opportunity worldwide to $300 billion. According to Juniper Research, the IoT ‘represents the combination of devices and software systems, connected via the Internet, that produce, receive and analyse data. These systems must have the goal of improving quality of life, efficiency, create value and reduce cost.

Retailers adopting beacons and RFID tags, will have the ability to leverage IoT technology pushing relevant information to customers through their smartphones and other mobile devices, along with real-time asset tracking and pricing adjustments while improving substantial competitive advantages. Retailers such as Zara and Target are already taking advantage of the benefits offered by RFID asset tracking.

The beacon industry is expanding rapidly, offering consumers with contextually relevant information in conjunction with their smartphone or wearable will enormously enhance the in-store experience. Top retailers building an IoT ecosystem that links hardware such as beacons, RFID tags, wearables and smart consumer electronics devices with software analytics can expect to gain market advantage and truly capitalize on the opportunity.

On the other hand there is an increased risk of data to be stolen or compromised when deploying emerging technologies such as IoT. Andrew Rose, Principal Analyst of Forrester Research, says “Companies should have a security policy in place to identify targets, evolve key security control, add newer delivery mechanisms and review their security scenario frequently,”

Fashion Trucks On The Rise

Since the last decade, mobile businesses have been on the rise across America as the US economy faltered and aspiring entrepreneurs sought ways to operate businesses for less money.

Much of the rise can be traced to Roy Choi, a chef in Los Angeles who started selling Korean barbecue tacos from a truck in 2008.

Le Fashion Truck, created by Jeanine Romo and Stacey Steffe, hit the streets of Los Angeles in 2011 and is often credited with being the first successful mobile boutique there, selling local clothes and handmade jewelry. Its startup costs, according to the owners, were less than $US20,000.It features young contemporary clothing with a California style.

Mobile boutiques also have a growing presence in New York, Nashville, Houston and the Washington area, according to the American Mobile Retail Association.

Mobile boutiques

“The future of mobile retail is going to be very diverse,” said Sarah Ellison Lewis, founder and chief creative officer of Bootleg Airstream, a mobile shoe store based in Austin, Texas, that carries shoes from around the world. “It’s an amazing way to reach people in a memorable form, and it’s a sustainable business model.”

Lewis said she had lower overhead expenses than most traditional stores and reached $US100,000 in revenue in her first year.

Average startup costs for mobile boutiques, according to Steffe, who is a co-founder and president of the mobile retail association, generally run from $US20,000 to $US30,000, based on expenses for a used truck, interior and exterior upgrades and inventory. She said the average truck carries about $US2000 to $US3000 a month in overhead costs, including gas and insurance.

Romo of Le Fashion Truck, who also acts as a consultant for other mobile truck owners, said it takes mobile businesses one to two years, on average, to break even.

The success of mobile stores can produce a backlash from brick-and-mortar businesses that sometimes see mobile stores as competitors, which aren’t necessarily required to comply with the same regulations traditional businesses face.

Pros– less Startup Money needed

Challenges

Regardless of the season, parking is always an issue

Microsoft Plan To Open New Store Near Apple

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Microsoft is opening a retail store in the heart of New York City on Fifth Avenue. The software maker’s store will be a few blocks from Apple. Microsoft’s new retail location will replace an existing Fendi store and serve as the company’s first full retail store in Manhattan.

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