As the Wal-Mart Turns: Big Retailers Post Sluggish April Sales
May 15, 2007

The fate of Wal-Mart, Target and other big retailers often represents a benchmark for how smaller multichannel marketers will perform, sales-wise. But if their sales performance in April was any indication, then it’s not a good time right now for anyone. Below are highlights of several key big retailers’ April sales totals. * Overall, the UBS-International Council of Shopping Centers’ sales totals of 53 retailers showed a 2.4 percent decrease, the largest decline since 1970 * Wal-Mart’s same-store sales fell 3.5 percent * Target Corp.’s same-store sales decreased by 6.1 percent * Federated Department Stores’ (Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s) same-store sales dropped 2.2 percent * Gap Inc.’s same-store sales sunk by

Shaped Up, Shipped Out
August 1, 2006

When cutting tools manufacturer Kennametal Inc. sold off its J&L Industrial Supply catalog division to maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) supplies cataloger MSC Industrial Direct Co. in a deal that closed June 8 for a cool $349.5 million, the seller said it would recognize an estimated $215 million to $225 million pre-tax gain in its fourth fiscal quarter ended June 30. These are striking figures, considering that as recently as five years ago, most people — both within Kennametal and on the outside — would've laughed at the idea that J&L could

Customer Retention: Keep ‘em Coming Back for More
February 14, 2006

Missing Person Description: high-quality multichannel buyer Last Seen: purchasing online 18 months ago The Details: A customer placed an online order for top-quality merchandise 18 months ago. Delivery confirmation was received three days later. Your repeated attempts to contact the customer via direct mail and e-mail have been met with no response. This customer is extremely valuable, with a high lifetime value and history of repeat purchases. Please forward any information as soon as possible. Do you know which customers are missing in action? Somewhere deep in your housefile are people who no longer shop from you. For some, service and quality issues alienated