Store Operations

Store Operations examines the issues and challenges facing today’s store operators. From workforce management to merchandising and new store openings, this section is designed to help retailers improve the bottom line while holding the line on costs. Subscribe to the feed and stay in touch with the latest retail happenings.

Apple Stores Renovate, Rebrand And Rename Employee Positions

  • Published in News Briefs
Rarely one to stay in the same place before trying out a new concept, Apple is making some tweaks to its brick-and-mortar retail business. The tech giant will be implementing three new retail positions within U.S. and UK stores, according to a report from MacRumors, including: Pro, a sales position…

Mapping Macy’s Biggest Market Share Losses

  • Published in News Briefs
In preparing to close another 100 stores in the U.S., Macy’s has been the poster child for the difficulties that have plagued department stores in 2016. With the retailer aiming to optimize store space, it must narrow down which stores aren’t performing up to par, as well as monitor the…

The Survey Says…It’s Time to Close The Gap

It has been said that success in retail boils down to execution. One sure way to boost operational effectiveness is by ensuring you have a complete and accurate view of assets and available inventory at the store level. What is the cost of not knowing? Some retailers estimate that indirect spend cuts into 10% to 15% of their sales revenue. And it doesn’t take much to throw off your accuracy, either: everything from a simple spreadsheet error to new acquisitions, store closings and openings takes its toll on your data. That’s why now is the time to close the gap between what you think you know and what you absolutely need to know about your stores.

Bon-Ton Can’t Escape Department Store Doldrums

Slow sales have continued to hamper the majority of department stores in 2016, and it appears Bon-Ton is as vulnerable to these woes as any other retailer. Q2 comparable store sales decreased 2.0% while total sales dropped 2.4%, with net losses reaching $38.7 million. While holding a lower profile than peers such as Macy’s, Kohl’s, JC Penney and Nordstrom, Bon-Ton’s struggles are just as real. And like many of its peers, Bon-Ton could likely afford to close a few stores that aren’t performing up to par. A report from Green Street Advisors recommended Bon-Ton close 40 stores — 15% of its remaining locations — in order to return to the productivity levels it enjoyed in 2006.

Department Store Drama Dominates Q2; Are More Store Closings In The Cards? Featured

A disappointing Q1 for department stores kept all eyes on a select few retailers throughout Q2. Although the major department stores managed to improve their financial results over Q1, these retailers still have plenty of internal fixes to implement in order to successfully complete any turnaround effort — including facing the reality that store closings may be a necessity. In the latest example of the hits these brands are still taking, Macy’s announced it would close 100 stores by 2017 — approximately 15% of its brick-and-mortar arsenal — as the company’s net sales decreased 3.9% and comparable store sales dipped 2%. This is the second year in a row Macy’s is closing a significant number of stores, and it follows the January 2016 announcement that the iconic brand would be implementing a $400 million cost-cutting plan.

Why Kanye West’s Partnership With Adidas Is More Than An Endorsement

Leveraging influencers such as bloggers and YouTube stars to boost brand awareness and engagement has become the norm for many companies. What’s not to like? Research by McKinsey shows that word of mouth generates twice as many sales as paid advertising. Recruiting a blogger or influencer with a large social following to help promote your brand through word of mouth (and a pretty Instagram picture) can lead to more sales and higher conversions. Generally, the term influencer describes someone who creates content for their own web sites and/or social channels. But celebrities are on a whole other level, and they may be hired to endorse a product or brand simply because of their large fan base. But what about the celebrities that go beyond the usual endorsements?

The Secret Sauce Behind Pop-Up Store Popularity Featured

While pop-up stores have been a growing avenue for retailers seeking to build an alternative brick-and-mortar presence, the changes in consumer behavior have taken these shop concepts from a niche strategy to a go-to brand builder. As the struggles of department store retailers and traditional brands in 2016 have revealed, holding a stable brick-and-mortar presence across hundreds of high-square-footage stores is difficult. With the top-25 retailers (excluding Amazon) losing 0.9% of market share since 2010, small- and mid-level players have more of an edge when it comes to being nimble and creative with their store environments.

Mobile Payments: Strength In Numbers, Or Better To Go Solo?

  • Published in News Briefs
In yet another sign of how fragmented the mobile payments environment is becoming, CVS Health has introduced its CVS Pay solution, which is integrated into the retailer's mobile app. The barcode-based system is currently available in select markets in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware, with a national rollout…

Two hhgregg Execs Promoted To C-Level Positions

The executive musical chairs at home and appliance retailer hhgregg seem to have settled down. The company has promoted Kevin Kovacs to Chief Financial Officer. Kovacs is assuming the role from Robert Riesbeck, who was recently appointed permanent President and CEO of the company.

Boutique Fitness Studio Pinpoints Ideal Locations For Expansion Featured

There is an old real estate term rumored to have been coined by Lord Harold Samuel, a British real estate tycoon: “There are three things that matter in property: location, location, location.” This statement relates heavily in retail, because retailers — small and large — rely on finding the ideal brick-and-mortar location to maximize ROI and build a successful business.

Coach Dials Back Department Store Presence As Full-Year Income Jumps 14%

Coach is seeing the fruits of its labor two years after beginning its brand transformation, generating positive revenue and income results and achieving comparable store sales growth (of 2%) for the first time in 12 quarters. At the same time, the luxury brand also is identifying where its weaknesses continue to lie: department stores. In its Q4/full year earnings statement, Coach reported:

MICROS Data Breach Could Involve Russian Cybercriminals

  • Published in News Briefs
Computer systems at MICROS, a division of Oracle, have suffered a data breach that also has compromised a customer support portal for its MICROS point-of-sale credit card payment systems, according to a report in KrebsOnSecurity. Oracle, which purchased MICROS in 2014, has confirmed that it is investigating a breach at…
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