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.

Douglas Cosmetics Gets Customer Service Facelift With Recent POS Make Over

Focused on the nurturing the needs and wants of its customers, Westport, CT-based Douglas Cosmetics, the largest cosmetics and fragrance retailer in Europe, is familiar with the sweet smell of success. Since its inception over 35 years ago, Douglas has focused on appealing to the customer’s “heart and mind” by delivering an exceptionally high level of face-to-face customer relationship management at the point of purchase. The company trains its salespeople to be experts in every line so they can help customers find exactly what they need.

The Employee As An Extension of the Brand: Container Store Study

Editor’s Note: This article is an excerpt from one of RetailWire’s recent online discussions. Each business morning on, retail industry execs get plugged in to the latest news and issues with key insights from a "BrainTrust" panel of retail industry experts. In the retail industry, a 100% plus annual employee turnover is not uncommon. And, in these tough economic times, that statistic doesn't tend to be of greatest concern to operators. More likely, they're preoccupied with determining if they can get away with one less person on the floor; cutting back on training; or increasing the commission portion of the compensation.

Domino’s Delivers Cost Savings, Data Security With Install of Thin-Client POS

With customer data security and current economic concerns top-of-mind at Domino’s, the 8,200-store pizza delivery chain expedited the implementation of new thin-client POS operating platforms for its stores. While in the past Domino’s may have rolled out this type of upgrade during the course of 18 months or more, this POS upgrade went out to 550 stores in six weeks.

SaaS Dashboard Speeds Sales, Inventory Data To Apparel Merchandisers

Retailers can make quicker ordering and merchandising decisions because they are receiving sales information up to a half day sooner from Theory, a New York-based apparel manufacturer and wholesaler. Using the SkyPAD Software as a Service (SaaS) dashboard, Theory is able to more quickly and efficiently analyze sales performance at the store level.

5 Key Trends From NRF Which May Separate The “Has Beens,” The “Survivors” & “Thrivers”

Against a backdrop of Gottschalks joining the ranks of retailers to file Chapter 11 and Circuit City in the process of auctioning off its assets, the NRF Big Show definitely had more of a sober tone this year. While Gottschalks filing was not a huge surprise to many in the industry, the struggles of the chain of 58 department stores and 3 apparel stores reflected the harsh reality that in the current economic crunch retailers are quickly falling into categories of has-beens, survivors, or thrivers.

Amidst Apparel Slump, Aeropostale Flies High With Aggressive Approach

Although the recently wrapped holiday shopping season was a big disappointment for most retailers, especially in the apparel sector, Aeropostale bucked the trend by boasting a same stores sale increase of 12% for December. Total net sales for the five-week period ending January 3, 2009 increased 25% to $392.7 million, from $313.4 million for the five-week period ending January 5, 2008.

IHL Group IDs Biggest Losers When It Comes To Out-of-Stock Failures

Out-of-stocks continue to plague the retail industry as one of the biggest causes of lost revenue and customer frustration. Now a new research study from IHL Group has helped to quantify just how big the problem is for the industry and also identifies the biggest laggards when it comes to in stock positions. Consumers experienced out-of-stocks during approximately 17.8% of their shopping trips, which is about 123% higher than the out-of-stock rate claimed by retailers for themselves, according to the new report from IHL Group titled “What’s The Deal With Out-Of-Stocks?”

Case Study: Family Dollar Optimizes POS System With Embedded Apps

 While many other retailers are struggling, business is good at Family Dollar. The 6,700 store value chain is adding stores and posting increases in the 3% range. Not resting on its laurels, the company understands that competition means constant improvement to the in-store customer experience. The check out process is one of the latest areas where the chain chose to make an impact on that experience.

Northeastern Professor Gao Offers 4 Point Plan of Attack To Address New Retail Realities

As a well-published academic specializing in international retailing Tony Gao, PhD, Marketing, Northeastern University, has written about some of the most complex issues the business can serve up. How does “The Antecedents and Consequences of Organizational Commitment in the Korean Retail Context” strike you for complexity?. But when it comes to the current retail environment, even he is taking a strictly back-to-basics approach.

Forecasting Substantial IT Spending Cuts In 09, Analysts Predict Projects To Make The Cut

Call it the “CSI phenomenon.” As coined by AMR Research retail VP Mike Griswold, it describes the current atmosphere in which every retail expenditure is under the kind of analysis reserved for a crime scene and accompanying forensics. As a result, retailers have moved from trying to guess how much their IT budgets will be cut, to focusing on the projects that they need to execute.

Retail Rebound Not Expected Until 2010 According to TNS Retail Forward Forecasts

Brace yourself. For those retailers struggling in today’s economy, next year could be even more challenging, according to new forecasts from TNS Retail Forward. As part of the retail consulting firm’s 2008 Strategic Outlook Conference series, Senior VP Lois Huff presented a sobering outlook for the retail industry that the declining retail sales will continue next year and aren’t expected to rebound until 2010.

RetailWire: Forever 21 Looks to Get Much Bigger with Mervyns Bid

Editor’s Note: This article is an excerpt from one of RetailWire’s recent online discussions. Each business morning on, retail industry executives get plugged in to the latest news and issues with key insights from a “BrainTrust” of retail industry experts. If at first you don't succeed.... Four years after Forever 21 failed in an attempt to purchase Mervyns from Target, the discount apparel chain is now making another bid to acquire 150 of the department stores locations as it operates under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
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