A new phenomenon called "haul videos," short product review videos where video bloggers (vloggers) show off their new swag to the whole world, is an important part of mega-retailer J.C. Penney's back-to-school marketing campaign this year.
With retailers forced to take a hard look at their bottom lines during the recession, catalogs are adjusting, but not disappearing, says Leslie Linevsky, founder of Catalogs.com. As postage rates climb and customers become concerned about the environmental impact, retailers are scaling back on the number of catalogs they mail out and are using them to drive traffic to their websites.
Linens & More for Less, a new retailer based in Brookfield, Ohio, is set to debut its first store on July 23 in Warren, Ohio, according to the Dayton Business Journal. Fred Mershad, the former CEO of Elder-Beerman Stores Co., will serve as the companys CEO. Mershad said the new retailer will open six stores before the end of the year, including a 30,000-sq.-ft. location inside the Dayton Mall, which will open on Sept. 23. Linens & More for Less will specialize in kitchen, bedroom and bathroom merchandise, offering 28 lines of cookware and more than 150 patterns of comforters.
Same-store sales, excluding Walmart, saw a 3.2 percent gain in June, up from May's 2.7 percent increase, according to Retail Forward's monthly report for 31 retailers. Last month's increase also topped June 2009's 4.7 percent decline, evaluated without Walmart. "The June results are positive, but the recovery in retail sales will be challenged in the coming months as long as doubts grow among shoppers," says Frank Badillo, senior economist at Retail Forward. "And it's clear that the news from the Gulf to Europe is starting to affect the outlook among shoppers." Among the biggest gains: Nordstrom (14.1 percent), Zumiez (10.9
Welcome to Online Retailing 2.0. Traditional brick-and-mortar retailers once outsourced their online sales to specialty "fulfillment" companies. Today they are running their own online operations — and increasingly challenging their executive brainpower to find more sophisticated ways to compete with online-only retailers such as Amazon.com.
Kim Siefke, e-commerce manager, web design and development at Bealls, spoke at last month's retail Marketing Conference in Orlando, Fla. on how her company has used rich media to grow its online and cross-channel sales. Joining Siefke in presenting a session titled “How Rich Media Can Help Drive Cross-Channel Success” was Wayne Sadlowski, vice president of business development at Adobe Scene7, a provider of image server software.
J.C. Penney Co., betting that better control of inventory and stronger online sales will underpin its growth, is spending heavily to speed up its supply chain and overhaul its website. The Plano, Texas, department store chain is boosting its tech spending for a second straight year, even as it has cut its broader capital spending in half over the same period as it scaled back store openings. The company's online growth has slowed in recent years and it's counting on Internet sales, now just 9 percent of its $17.5 billion in annual revenue, to deliver $1 billion in sales growth over the next five years.
Will 2010 finally be the year of mobile commerce? While mobile has been the "next big thing" for at least the last five years, 2010 may actually be a banner year for the platform. Smartphone and iPhone usage has soared, and even older adults use phones to check the stock market, find the best deals at the grocery store and price insurance policies.
J.C. Penney Co. plans to reverse its three-year sales decline and increase revenue by $5 billion by 2014, management said at the retailer's annual analyst and investor meeting. Penney projects annual sales will reach $23 billion in five years from a number of initiatives that include continuing to add exclusive apparel brands such as Liz Claiborne and MNG Mango, mending its home business and updating its jewelry selection. It plans to add 75 Sephora shops a year in its existing stores to reach 600 by 2015. It's introducing high fashion into shoe and accessories departments, taking confusion out of promotional pricing and launching a mobile-ready website within 18 months. It's also building on a loyalty rewards program that had 5 million customers signed up in the first year and a potential draw from 16 million Penney credit card holders.