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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.

Despite Anchor Store Closures, Malls Can Secure Success With Dining, Experiences, Entertainment

As many as 30% of malls will need to close due to the oversaturation of shopping centers in the U.S., estimates Coresight Research. But the need to reduce significant square footage isn’t all bad news. While more than 1,100 department stores are set to close between 2018 and 2023, mall operators can secure future success by: Focusing on potential “anchor” replacements, but not in the form of large format stores; Prioritizing high-end dining and experiences to cater to future generations of shoppers; and Embracing the concepts of “destination centers” and “retaildential” complexes.

#RIC18: Digital Strategies, Omnichannel Commerce And Operations Track Coverage

The 2018 Retail Innovation Conference featured more than 20 breakout sessions, organized into six tracks: Digital Strategies Omnichannel Commerce Operations Marketing/Customer Engagement Retail Innovation Customer Experience These small-group sessions allowed attendees to dive deeply into hot topics and hear in-depth case studies from retail executives, as well as analysis and best practices from consultants and industry experts. Here’s a quick recap of the sessions from the Digital Strategies, Omnichannel Commerce and Operations tracks, with live links to videos for a more detailed look. Recaps of the other three tracks will be published on June 1. DIGITAL STRATEGIES: Use Storytelling To Attract And Delight Today’s ‘Spoiled’ Shopper How To Infuse Storytelling And Personalization Into Your Digital Merchandising Strategy             Jennifer Fisher, Sr. Director of e-Commerce Americas for Crocs, addressed how she and her team built a first-class digital merchandising strategy that focused on buying/planning, storytelling and personalization. Crocs’ challenge was stagnant and flat sales YoY. “It was coming along but it wasn’t really growing,” said Fisher, adding that the company tackled the problem through three different viewpoints: the order structure; a go-to-market strategy focused on storytelling and personalization; and the process to create a cross-functional team.…

How A Digital Storefront Enhances The Physical Experience At Mizuno

Designed to “capture the new digital savvy customer and showcase Mizuno product cross-sport,” the digital solutions in place at Mizuno flagship stores are driving global customer engagement and loyalty. Mizuno operates one flagship store in the U.S., as well as others in key markets worldwide. The digital display merchandising solution, provided by Perch, features self-serve technology that brings the digital online experience into the brick-and-mortar store. This technology is a key focus of the Mizuno Experience Center, located in The Battery, the U.S. flagship store in Atlanta. Here, shoppers can immerse themselves in digital experiences to book custom fittings for golf clubs or running shoes, assess their baseball swing, get gloves steamed and more.

Bloomingdale’s Ties Training To $3 Million In Savings

Bloomingdale’s has been using the Axonify Microlearning Platform for associate training since 2013, but the retailer could not quantify the financial impact of the program until the recent addition of a new product, called Axonify Impact. With this functionality, Bloomingdale's was able to tie its safety and asset protection training…
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Sportsman’s Warehouse Boosts Sales, Customer Acquisition With ‘Back In Stock’ Emails

Out-of-stocks (OOS) cost North American retailers roughly $130 billion each year, according to the IHL Group. To combat this problem, Sportsman’s Warehouse, an omnichannel sporting goods and outdoor products retailer, has deployed a solution that allows shoppers to sign up for an email alert that lets them know when the item they’re seeking is back in stock. Sportsman’s Warehouse went live with the MyAlerts solution in November 2017. Since then, the company has seen a “significant lift” in sales, with high open rates for the back-in-stock emails. “This demonstrates our consumers are very engaged and excited to know when our merchandise is available,” said Mike Van Orden, CTO of Sportsman's Warehouse in an interview with Retail TouchPoints.

Goodwill Boosts Retail Employee Performance With New Career Development Program

Goodwill has implemented a pilot program designed to improve retail retention and provide the resources necessary to stimulate workplace growth. The program, called GoodPaths, is being piloted within three local Goodwill locations: Easter Seals-Goodwill Northern Rocky Mountain, Inc. (Great Falls, Mont.); Goodwill Industries of Houston (Texas); and Palmetto Goodwill (North Charleston, S.C.). As many as 9% of the 289 Goodwill retail employees enrolled in the GoodPaths pilot have been promoted after five months and 85% have received wage increases, according to Jim Gibbons, CEO and President of Goodwill Industries International, in a February 2018 blog post.

Walmart Abandons Cashierless Mobile Checkout

  • Published in News Briefs
Just a few months after announcing that it would expand the Scan & Go solution to 100 U.S. stores, Walmart has dropped the program, citing a lack of customer usage. The mobile app allowed shoppers to scan items as they moved through the store and then bypass the checkout line…
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Retail Winners Are Taking A New Approach To Space Management

More stores opened than closed in 2017, according to IHL Group, with retailers like T-Mobile adding 1,500 new locations. Yet, JCPenney, Foot Locker, Toys ‘R’ Us and others have shuttered hundreds already this year. How are some retailers increasing sales in retail and expanding their store footprint, while others shut their doors? While there are many factors, successful retailers are taking a new, more aggressive approach to space management. Instead of relying on traditional clustering and one-size-fits-all planograms, they are taking a more ‘store-centric’ approach — investing in building robust digital models of their entire store footprint, putting digital merchandising tools in the hands of their associates, and using automation to enable visual merchandisers and space planners to quickly and easily create store-specific plans.

#RIC18: Adore Me And Bedgear Take Divergent Paths Into Brick-And-Mortar

In an omnichannel world, innovators can choose multiple avenues to break into an existing market. Because of its relatively low cost of entry, many upstarts gravitate to e-Commerce first. Other startups choose to work with existing retailers to take advantage of their brand recognition, customer base and operational capabilities. At the Retail Innovation Conference, speakers from two companies that are less than 10 years old — Adore Me and Bedgear — explained why (and how) they took different routes to become players in the lingerie and mattress/bedding businesses, respectively.

#RIC18: For Dunkin’ Brands, Data Identifies CX Pain Points

Paul Murray, Director of Digital Experience, Dunkin' Brands   Data can provide retailers with a lot of answers — but in some cases, its most useful function is identifying which questions the retailer needs to ask. Paul Murray, Director of Digital Experience at Dunkin’ Brands, shared several real-world examples of how the retailer used surveys, analysis and AI technology to figure out why the expected didn’t happen or the unexpected occurred. At the Retail Innovation Conference session titled Closing The CX Chasm, Murray was joined by ERDM Founder Ernan Roman. “Customers have unprecedented and unmet expectations about personalized value,” said Roman. “There’s a chasm between the customer experience (CX) fantasy that brands have versus reality.”

#RIC18: How TechStyle Optimizes Personalization With Continuous Testing

For most retailers, one-to-one personalization is a goal to work towards rather than an actual achievement — but TechStyle Fashion Group is an exception. The retailer, which includes the Fabletics, JustFab and ShoeDazzle brands, has succeeded in making personalization practical. At the 2018 Retail Innovation Conference, Traci Inglis, Brand President for JustFab and ShoeDazzle, shared some key statistics that chart TechStyle’s progress: • The retailer sends unique emails to each of its 2.5 million members;• The emails utilize dynamic one-to-one merchandising across thousands of styles, individualized based on the customer’s preferences, clicks and purchases;• Targeted subject lines highlight the customer’s first name and the email offer; and• TechStyle personalizes the web pages members see based on their fashion and style preferences as well as their location.

#RIC18: West Elm Innovation VP: ‘Move From Outputs To Outcomes’

Retail organizations today — especially those set up with more traditional structures, hiring and employment — are challenged with understanding how to foster digital innovation. In a keynote presentation at the Retail Innovation Conference, Luke Chatelain, VP of Innovation for West Elm, shared best practices for how retail leaders can tackle technological change successfully. For Chatelain, there are two noteworthy points:
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