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Shopper Experience

Shopper Engagement delves into the latest trends and strategies retailers are using to cultivate long-term relationships with shoppers. Social media, mobile technology, in-store tablets and more are covered in this section. Subscribe to the feed and stay in touch with the latest retail happenings.

Barnes & Noble Promotes COO To Top Spot

  • Published in News Briefs
For the fifth time in four years, beleaguered bookseller Barnes & Noble has turned to a new leader, promoting COO Demos Parneros to the position of CEO. Company founder Leonard Riggio, who has been serving as CEO since the August 2016 departure of Ron Boire, will remain Chairman of the…
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TechStyle CEO Adam Goldenberg: Technology Is One Of Our Products

As its name implies, TechStyle represents a marriage of technology and fashion. It’s the parent company of successful, fast-growing brands including Fabletics, JustFab, ShoeDazzle and FabKids. TechStyle uses proprietary technology, personalization and vertical integration to create a winning combination of subscription e-Commerce with brick-and-mortar retail. The emphasis on technology comes naturally to Co-CEO and Co-Founder Adam Goldenberg, who has been a serial tech entrepreneur since the age of 13. At 17 he sold his Gamer’s Alliance web site to Intermix; he was then offered a full-time position there, becoming COO at the age of 19. In this exclusive Q&A, Goldenberg reveals what makes TechStyle unique, including a heavy reliance on data, an emphasis on speed, and fruitful collaborations between data scientists and fashion merchandisers.

CVS, Apple Accelerate Store Redesigns

  • Published in News Briefs
Although CVS Pharmacy and Apple could scarcely be more different retailers, similar pressures — primarily declining foot traffic — are prompting both companies to redesign their stores. After seeing non-pharmacy comparable store sales fall 2.9% in Q4, CVS Health is transforming its stores to focus on front-store sales. Adding healthier…
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The Guitar Sanctuary Tunes Up AOV 100% With Alternative Financing

Selling guitars and other high-ticket instruments can be a daunting task for independent music stores, especially with big box retailers providing competition. The Guitar Sanctuary decided to hit the right note with its consumers by giving them an alternative mobile financing option that allowed them to pay for their instruments in six months’ time instead of upfront. Since implementing the financing program from provider Blispay in June 2016, average order value (AOV) for buyers using the service has doubled compared to the purchase amounts of other consumers.

It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad, Mixed World

It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World was a groundbreaking film with a superstar cast, thrilling story and great comedy rolled into one. In fact, it was one of Hollywood’s first dramedies, bringing together the best of both comedies and drama to a single film. We’re now inundated with combined words like Wikipedia, Groupon, the cronut — all winning combinations born from creativity and ingenuity. But you don’t need the catchy title to get a great combination. Look at virtual reality, for instance. VR applications (and the related augmented reality apps) are growing more popular all the time. Consumers are increasingly calling out for unique and memorable experiences — like the Pokémon Go craze that generated $100M of revenue in just 20 days. And retailers are experimenting with these technologies to enhance their sales and marketing strategies. What they’ve created is one of those great hybrids, but it’s not a single word just yet — simply mixed reality.

Accurate Product Content Influences 87% Of Shopper Decisions

Retailers aiming to generate more store traffic should focus on sharing all the information they possibly can with shoppers: 87% of consumers say accurate, rich and complete product content is very important when deciding what to buy, according to Salsify. These consumers don’t just want a sliver of content before they buy. Up to 70% of shoppers must see at least three product images, and 86% want to read at least three product reviews before purchasing a product.

Clunky, Outdated Web Site? 60% Of SMB Consumers Will Click Away

Small businesses face any number of challenges as they try to stand out against their larger retail competitors, but one area they simply can’t ignore is their e-Commerce presence. Nearly 60% of consumers said they would be less likely to purchase from a small business if they form a bad impression of its web site — and only 7.5% said it would have no impact at all, according to a survey from Vistaprint. Since SMB retailers often lack the marketing and technology resources that their larger competitors have, their sites can lack polish or feature incomplete information. But many of the elements contributing to a bad impression can easily be fixed, including:

Albertsons Promotes Denningham To President And COO

Albertsons Companies has promoted long-time executive Wayne Denningham to President and COO. Bob Miller remains chairman and CEO, titles he has held since April 2015. In this new combined role, Denningham will continue to lead store operations for the supermarket chain, with added oversight of marketing and merchandising, supply chain, manufacturing and integration. “I asked Wayne to join Albertsons LLC in 2006 to lead our Rocky Mountain Division,” said Miller in a statement. “Since that time, he’s led three different divisions, helped to negotiate and manage some of our most significant acquisitions, and successfully turned around some of our toughest assets.”

Peapod Partners With Personalized Meal Planner

  • Published in News Briefs
Peapod, a grocery delivery service operated by Ahold USA, has partnered with DinnerTime.com, a personalized meal recommendation service. DinnerTime.com customizes recommendations based on member households’ tastes, budgets, time constraints, health concerns, food allergies and other dietary restrictions. In the 24 U.S. markets Peapod serves, DinnerTime.com members can get a personalized…
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How To Make Amazon’s Playbook Your Own

Following is an exclusive article that shares highlights from a keynote presentation Eisenberg will deliver during the Retail Innovation Conference, May 8-10, 2017 in New York City. What if you entered a drawing to spend a day with the earth’s second richest man? He would share how he has grown his company to achieve 43% of all e-Commerce sales in the U.S. He would share insights on growing one of the fastest B2B businesses to achieve $10 billion in sales. Or even how he turned a failing newspaper into a profitable entity. Can you believe that this is the same guy who people were laughing at two decades ago? It took him more than 60 meetings just to raise one million dollars for Amazon.com.

Lord & Taylor Launches Bobbi Brown Stores-Within-The-Store

  • Published in News Briefs
Five Lord & Taylor stores, including its New York City flagship, will house “justBOBBI” stores-within-the-store, featuring merchandise reflecting the aesthetic of cosmetics and lifestyle expert Bobbi Brown. The justBOBBI shops will include wellness and beauty products, apparel, accessories and books Brown has authored, including her latest, Beauty From The Inside…
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PetSmart To Acquire Chewy For Record $3.35 Billion

PetSmart is acquiring online pet supplies retailer Chewy for a reported $3.35 billion. While neither company confirmed the acquisition price, the sum (as reported by Recode) makes this the biggest e-Commerce acquisition ever. The reported total outstrips Walmart’s $3.3 billion acquisition of Jet.com, but it plays out in a similar scenario: the brick-and-mortar leader acquires a valuable, rapidly rising e-Commerce brand that enhances its reach to consumers. Like Walmart and many other big box counterparts, PetSmart aims to adapt to shifting consumer demands and expectations by positioning itself to generate revenue and gather insight from a younger, online-savvy merchant.

Potential Bonobos Acquisition Shows This Isn’t Your Father’s Walmart

Walmart has undertaken quite a shift in its e-Commerce operations over the past year, with the $3.3 billion Jet.com acquisition, bringing aboard new execs and a whole new attitude for the brand. While the Jet.com acquisition would have been considered an implausible idea for the retail giant as recently as two years ago, Walmart is continuing to buck “business as usual” as it prepares to buy another major e-Commerce player: Bonobos. The reported $300 million acquisition would be Walmart’s fourth in 2017, following the buyouts of ModCloth, Moosejaw and Shoebuy. It would be further proof that the brand is serious about diversifying its portfolio, adapting to rapidly changing customer trends and catering to a wider array of audiences.

Your Trip To The Mall Is Getting A Futuristic Makeover

Physical commerce isn’t going anywhere. The instant gratification and satisfaction that comes from search and discovery and interacting with goods and associates will always prevail over e-Commerce. The everyday shopping experience is changing, however, and retailers and mall owners that adapt to these changing preferences are the ones who will see continued success.    People like physical retail experiences because of the socialization that comes with real-time, real-life feedback, ostensibly impartial opinions on how something looks or works, and the unique impact a tactile relationship with a product can create (“so soft” comes to mind when shopping for clothing or even bedding). Additionally, there’s a reason that some immediate purchases, or even splurges, are called “retail therapy” — the experience of completing a purchase can be therapeutic in certain scenarios (replacing something that had a bad association in your mind, preparing for something you hope to come, etc.). Somehow clicking through on a web site doesn’t deliver that same satisfaction.
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