Retailers Seek to Cash in on Facebook Users This Holiday Season
September 30, 2010

Brick-and-mortar retailers badly want to tap into Facebook's 500 million users. Retailers realize that for a growing number of Facebook users, it's no longer just a website. It's a new platform, one of the "big new disruptors" in the online world, according to experts assembled at this week's annual retail technology summit in Dallas.

3 Ways the iPad Impacts Retail
September 28, 2010

Aside from its impressive sales figures, the iPad already has found its way into our culture, making appearances on hit TV shows, in popular YouTube videos and in White House policy meetings. With this much momentum, what kind of an impact might the device have on retailers? We'll see much more innovation in the year ahead, but here are three early signs of the iPad’s expected impact in retail:

Social Couponing Proves Too Successful for Some Retailers
September 22, 2010

Posies Cafe signed up with Groupon several months ago. If Groupon could promise to deliver a certain minimum number of customers, Posies would sell them $13 worth of products for $6. Nearly 1,000 people bought the Groupon in the one day it was advertised, swamping the small coffee shop for three months. Posies' owner said that the volume of sales coupled with the steep discount threatened her business, forcing her to spend $8,000 of her personal savings to pay her employees and the rent.

Gap's Nationwide Promotion With Groupon Proves Too Popular
August 23, 2010

What a difference a deal makes. Groupon launched its first nationwide deal, $25 off a $50 purchase at Gap. The promotion, which was available in every city, briefly crashed Groupon’s servers as deal-happy consumers clicked on the 50 percent discount and pinged their friends.

Piperlime's Latest Social Media Campaign Creates a Stir
August 18, 2010

Piperlime has raised the ire of some of its Facebook fans with a series of cheeky — or "snotty," according to detractors — wall posts last week. The Gap brand began posting updates on Facebook and Twitter such as "Every time you wear sweatpants in public, a single guy leaves New York" and "Let's put Saturday-night effort into Sunday afternoon." While some fans found the posts entertaining, even applauding Piperlime for attacking sweatpants, others were enraged.

July Retail Sales Prove Not as Hot as the Weather
August 6, 2010

The second half of the year is off to a slow start for retailers, who reported Thursday that sales at stores open at least a year were weaker than expected in July, increasing 2.9 percent from July of last year, according to a tally by Thomson Reuters.

Back-to-School Sales Could Rise By as Much as 16%
July 15, 2010

Back-to-school spending may rise as much as 16 percent in the U.S. this year, reversing year-ago declines and putting more muscle behind the economic rebound. Families with students plan to spend about $55.1 billion in the period, compared with $47.5 billion a year earlier, the National Retail Federation said, citing consumers surveyed by BIGResearch.

Joblessness, consumer data give mixed signals on recovery
July 9, 2010

More than 450,000 people filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week, as joblessness continued to hamper the U.S. economy and other new economic indicators reflected mixed signs about the recovery. The number of people filing new unemployment claims has fluctuated between 450,000 and 500,000 a week since January, on a seasonally adjusted basis. Although that is down from last year, it remains an indication of ongoing weakness, economists said. Other new figures showed that consumer borrowing fell again in May, suggesting that Americans remain nervous about the economy. June retail sales jumped 3 percent, though some analysts noted that

Gap to Open Athleta Test Store
May 13, 2010

Already sold online, Athleta — owned by Gap Inc. — will open a 2,424-square-foot test store at Strawberry Village Center in Mill Valley, Calif., later this month, according to the company.