Inventory / Merchandising / Supply Chain

Supply chain challenges are mounting for many retailers, especially those operating in multiple regions of the country and abroad. Consumers expect to be able to order and purchase products via any channel, then have them delivered to their channel of choice – and quickly! New technologies are providing the ways and means for merchants to deliver on the promise of omnichannel excellence. Now retailers must find the best ways to implement new solutions to stay competitive.

RSi Intelligent Crowdsourcing Helps Improve Retailer-Supplier Collaboration

SS RSi imageTo maintain a positive relationship with supplier partners, retailers must ensure product availability and comply with brand requirements regarding store planograms, merchandising techniques, in-store signage and more.

Real-time intelligence provider Retail Solutions and Gigwalk have partnered to release the RSi Intelligent Crowdsourcing solution. Using the solution, suppliers can accurately detect store and event conditions, send real-time fix notices to store teams, share observations with the value chain and reclaim lost sales. The solution is designed to streamline the execution of new item planograms and promotional displays, as well as preventing product out-of-stocks.


U.S. Imports Rise As Longshoreman Contract Remains Unresolved

China-shipping-lineImport volume at U.S. ports is expected to reach 1.47 million containers in September, a slight decrease from the 1.53 million high in August, according to the Global Port Tracker report from the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Hackett Associates. However, the total anticipated volume is higher than the five-year average for September, which is 1.42 million containers.

Retailers are stocking up early to prepare for the upcoming holiday season in the event that contract negotiations break down and a dockworker strike ensues.


Collaboration Becomes Key To Success For Retailers And Suppliers

FEAT Collaboration1 imageIn the age of the omnichannel consumer, retailers need to ensure products are available at the right time, through the right channel and at the right price.

While it seems collaboration between retailers, suppliers and manufacturers has existed for as long as the industry itself has existed, it has become more pivotal to success as consumers grow more demanding.


The Honest Company Captures $70 Million In Funding

The Honest Company, a provider of natural and non-toxic products for families, has closed a $70 million financing round. 

Wellington Management Company LLP led the round, while Dragoneer Investment group contributed. Existing investors, including General Catalyst Partners, ICONIQ Capital, Institutional Venture Partners and Lightspeed Venture Partners, also participated.


Vince Camuto Implements Island Pacific SmartSuite Solution

Vince-camuto-soho-store-exteriorVince Camuto, a women’s fashion and footwear brand, has signed a deal with Island Pacific to implement the company’s SmartSuite solution in all retail stores.

The Island Pacific SmartRetail merchandising application is positioned to  provide the Camuto Group with an end-to-end solution across the brand’s headquarters and retail stores. The Camuto Group deployed a variety of other Island Pacific solutions, including: SmartAnalytics; SmartPlanning; SmartStore Mobile POS; SmartOmni; and SmartBus.


Kwikee Vendor Portal Offers Seamless Access To Product Images, Data

SS kwikee imageWhile shopping online, most consumers rely on images to make final purchase decisions. That is why it is paramount that retailers have real-time access to high-definition product images.

Kwikee, a developer and distributor of product images, data and content, has introduced a vendor portal designed to help retailers and manufacturers communicate and fulfill product image requests more efficiently. Images within the Kwikee database can be used across all marketing channels, and are approved by the manufacturer prior to distribution.


Market Basket Renews Revionics Pricing Partnership

Market-Basket-Store-Front-CopyMarket Basket, a privately-owned grocer, has renewed and expanded its agreement with end-to-end merchandise optimization solutions provider Revionics.  

Market Basket initially implemented Revionics Life Cycle Pricing Optimization solutions to keep up with larger competitors. The company recently expanded the solution implementation to increase market share through shopper-centric pricing. The optimization process includes:


How Foot Locker Is Winning The Multichannel Race With Inventory Visibility

Hicks Ken CEO Foot Locker Inc Hi-Res
Today’s retail customer shops in a number of different ways — online, through their mobile devices, in stores, in print — and we retailers must adapt to these new shopping trends. This requires us to be more flexible in order to personalize the shopping experience across channels. We know, for example, there are people who go into the store to look at our merchandise and then buy it online, while others will go online to get product information and then buy it in-store. The only way to support these new shopping patterns effectively is with an enterprise-wide view of inventory.

Making It Easy For The Customer

Our whole concept at Foot Locker Inc. is to make it easy for our customers to shop the way they want to shop. That’s why we make our entire inventory available to our customers and our stores. Let me give you some examples.

A customer may come into one of our Foot Locker stores looking for a particular Jordan basketball shoe in a size 12. If we don’t have that size or color in the store, an associate can look on the register or their mobile device to find a Foot Locker store nearby where the customer can go and pick up the shoe right away. Or the customer can order the shoe they want in the store and have it shipped to either their home or to the store so they can pick it up later.


Shopatron Extends Inventory Data Across All Channels

SS Shopatron imageInventory visibility is essential for retail managers and store associates who need to track shipments and stock shelves accurately. Consumers also are seeking a 360-degree view of inventory so they know what products are available for purchase and on which channels.

Shopatron has introduced a new free version of Inventory Lookup, a cloud-based solution that offers enterprise-wide inventory visibility and provides retailers with analytics to improve in-store operations, stocking, merchandising and product marketing. The solution was designed to help retailers reduce inventory carrying costs, accelerate inventory turn and improve geo-targeted marketing.


Blue Ridge Improves Demand-Driven Forecasting With Supply Chain Solution

SS site only BlueRidge imageEfficient supply chain management helps retailers maximize their investments and maintain a coherent line of communication from the manufacturer to the store.

Blue Ridge has released its Cloud Supply Chain Solution designed  to simplify the supply chain management process. The solution leverages consumer demand to deliver forecasts and improve functions such as demand forecasting, planning, allocation and replenishment.


Accellos And HighJump Software Merge To Optimize Supply Chain Operations

merger and acquisition
, a global software solutions provider, has merged with supply chain management company HighJump Software, to help retailers enhance their omnichannel operations.

With 11,000 customers across 23 countries, the new merged company will be designed to provide a product portfolio that helps retailers, distributors, manufacturers and logistics service providers manage complex order fulfillment cycles and collaborate with supply chain partners.


Ermenegildo Zegna Group Employs Oracle Retail To Improve Globalization Strategies

Ermenegildo Zegna Group, an Italian menswear brand, has launched Oracle Retail Merchandise Financial Planning to integrate the company’s global merchandising and financial planning operations. The retailer currently operates more than 500 stores in over 100 countries.

The platform is designed to align the company’s financial and commercial planning processes and to more quickly identify opportunities across market segments.


5 Widespread Myths About Localized Assortment

VP Emnos head shotAs retailers continue to harness the power of their data and invest in the infrastructure necessary to support internal analytics and customer-centric decision-making, more and more merchandising executives are struggling with the decision of whether or not to move to a localized assortment model. While numerous retailers have been very successful with localizing their merchandising operations and many are now experimenting in this space, a number of myths still plague the retail community.

Although the transition to a localized model can be a momentous undertaking, retailer hesitation often stems from a lack of true understanding.  Here are the five biggest myths surrounding localized assortment:


DSW Uses Size Optimization To Help Merchandise New Store Mixture

DSW8With 400 stores and growing, DSW is constantly challenged with providing the right selection of shoes for every shopper. Adding a series of smaller format stores to the mix has heightened the challenge.

“These [smaller format] stores are 8,000 to 12,000 square feet so the precision of the assortment has to be right,” said Linda Canada, SVP of Planning and Allocation of the shoe retailer. A typical DSW store is approximately 20,000 square feet, she explained.

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