Same-Store Sales, Gap, Winners and Losers, Shopper Marketing

Resetting Retail Same-Store Sales Expectations, Winners and Losers

Retail sales might not exactly be setting any blistering pace of growth, but Retail Metrics has a report out that shows a traffic boost at the end of July should offer a boost to retail same-store sales. The overall number ticked down 9 basis points to 1.4% growth, but this is a 110 basis point sequential improvement from a very weak performance in June.

Same-Store Sales, Gap, Winners and Losers, Shopper Marketing

What the report shows is that there has been a significant deceleration taking place as GDP has slowed down. Retail Metrics’ Ken Perkins noted that July lacks catalysts and he called it the least important month of the quarter for most retailers as this is a clearance and transitional month for them. He also noted that consumer sentiment hit a 2012 low in July, and also that gasoline prices have been creeping higher.

Walgreen Co. (NYSE: WAG) is expected to show -4.5%, and there has been a 20 basis point decline in discount retailers as estimates for Fred’s Inc. (NASDAQ: FRED), Costco Wholesale Corp. (NASDAQ: COST) and Target Corp. (NYSE: TGT) have pulled back. We now have a slight dip of 10 basis points more to 40 basis points from the start of the month in department stores, with Nordstrom Inc. (NYSE: JWN) dipping a bit further since its anniversary sale will hurt July but help August. On the other hand, Kohl’s Corp. (NYSE: KSS) is expected to show a 0.2% gain in same-store sales, and that would be a significant jump from the -4.2% it saw in June.

[via 247WallStreet]

Ann Taylor to Open New Concept Store, Retail Localization

Ann Taylor to Open New Concept Store

August is shaping up to be a big month for fashion at Ross Park Mall, with at least two stores slated to open Friday.

Ann Taylor to Open New Concept Store, Retail Localization

Experience a fresh take on all American women’s wear at the Ann Taylor concept store.

“Our new concept stores … are light, modern, feminine and designed to showcase the full Ann Taylor collection while making our client feel comfortable and welcome,” head designer Lisa Axelson said in a release.

The store will be modeled after a contemporary home, with white-washed maple floors, crystal chandeliers and tufted furniture. It also will feature a styling area with plush carpet, backlit mirrors, floral wall details and ottomans, complemented by an adjacent private lounge.

These made-over store layouts have been popping up across the country since fall 2010 in cities such as New York, Boston, Chicago, Miami and more. Locally, the Galleria in Mt. Lebanon welcomed one last September. To mark the opening at Ross Park Mall, an in-store shopping event will be held 1 to 5 p.m. Aug. 11, with refreshments, raffles, a DJ, and gifts for those with purchases of more than $100.

[via post-gazette]

Nike flagship store, budapest, retail localization

Nike Launches Flagship Store in the Heart of Budapest

As part of its “Game on World” international campaign, Nike invited top Hungarian athletes and influencers to set their personal running goals and celebrate the opening of the new Nike store in the heart of Budapest.

Nike flagship store, budapest, retail localization

Top athletes and influencers including Ágnes Kovács, world champion swimmer, Leila Gyenesei pentathlete and Réka Rubint fitness champion attended the VIP event and participated in a special photo shoot where they made their Nike+ running pledge and posted the photos on the glass “Game on World” wall outside the WestEnd mall.

“Nike is committed to providing the best products, services and experiences to consumers around the world. This new premium store in Budapest is a great example of bringing that commitment to life,” said Nike Central Europe Sales Director Kai Bordel.

Nike showcased its latest Running product innovations including:

Nike+ Running: Runners in Hungary preparing for the Nike Budapest Half Marathon on September 9 can now access the Nike+ Running App for iPhone as well as the brand new App for Android. They can find all the motivation they need through the Nike+ Running experience which encourages runners with inspirational features and access to the Nike+ community, which has grown to approximately 8.5 million members. The recently launched “Game On, World” campaign challenges runners to log more miles than ever before as they prepare for their race.

Nike FlyKnit: Nike Flyknit revolutionizes running by rethinking shoe construction from the ground up. Yarns and fabric variations are precisely engineered only where they are needed for a featherweight and virtually seamless upper. With all the structure and support knitted in, the whole shoe weighs a mere 160 grams. The inspiration for Nike Flyknit was born from everyday athletes who craved a shoe with the qualities of a sock: a snug fit that goes virtually unnoticed to the wearer.

[via fibre2fashion]

J.C. Penny Store within store, MNG, Retail Localization

J.C. Penney Opening ‘Hip’ In-Store Shops

As part of the retailer’s turnaround strategy, J.C. Penney has opened its first “hip” in-store shop dedicated to giving shoppers a more hands-on experience. Each shop is dedicated to the Levi’s and Arizona brands, as well as a new brand called “i jeans by Buffalo,” featuring exclusive creations every month from designer David Bitton, according to

J.C. Penny Store within store, MNG, Retail Localization

The struggling retailer will open the shops inside 683 JCPenney stores across the country. Features include denim bars, where shoppers can talk to iPad-toting “fit specialists” and choose from 11 different cuts and 88 different finishes or washes.

J.C. Penney has recently reported that same-store sales during the first three months came in at a worse-than-expected 18.9 percent. It also posted a large net loss and cut its dividend.

[via Retail Customer Experience]

Local Retail Store, Online Marketers, Taxes, NRF

NRF: When it comes to Taxes, Online, Local Retailers should be on Level Playing Field

he National Retail Federation reiterated its call on Congress to address a loophole that allows most online sellers to avoid sales tax collection to the detriment of local retailers and communities.

Local Retail Store, Online Marketers, Taxes, NRF

“Our current sales tax system is broken. It favors one set of retailers over another, hurts job growth, and threatens the economic health of local communities,” NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said. “We can’t allow an antiquated decision to unfairly disadvantage Main Street in a time when it’s already fighting to stay afloat.”

Shay’s comments come as the House Judiciary Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing Tuesday on H.R. 3179, the Marketplace Equity Act, authored by Reps. Steve Womack, R-Ark.. and Jackie Speier, D-Calif. The bill would address the 1992 Supreme Court decision in Quill v. North Dakota, where the court said states can only require an out-of-state seller to collect tax on sales to its residents if the seller has a physical presence in the state. Instead, the legislation would allow states to require collection by all sellers the same as local retail operations.

[via RetailingToday]


Convenience Chain Rolling out Bill-Pay Kiosks

TIO Networks Corp. will soon deploy 37 bill-payment kiosks to MAPCO Express convenience stores throughout Memphis and Nashville.


Under the agreement, MAPCO customers can pay bills using cash at participating stores with the option for same-day payment processing. Customers can make payments in English or Spanish with real-time processing and 24/7 access to customer service, according to a company presss release. TIO has partnered with a number of local and national billers including NES, MLGW, AT&T, Boost, T-Mobile, Sprint, Verizon, Dish Networks and DirecTV, enabling MAPCO customers to pay multiple bills in one location.

“We’re very excited to partner with TIO to offer our customers another piece of the full-service experience they’ve come to expect from MAPCO,” said Tony Miller, VP of sales and merchandising. “Giving our customers an easy, safe and convenient opportunity to pay a variety of bills was a no brainer.”

[via Retail Customer Experience]

Target store remodels, retail localization

Target Remodels 30 Stores to Expand Fresh Food Selection

Stores are currently under construction for October completion

Target Corp. announced today that it has begun remodeling 30 general merchandise stores in the U.S. Upon completion of the construction in October 2012, the remodeled stores will offer an expanded selection of affordable and quality fresh foods to guests.

Target store remodels, retail localization

Target stores currently being remodeled are part of the last of three cycles of remodels this year and span markets from Cincinnati, Ohio to Jacksonville, Fla. and Nashville, Tenn. To view a complete map of Target store locations receiving the expanded food layout in October 2012, as well as those that received the remodel earlier this year in March and June, please visit

“By remodeling our stores and expanding the grocery selection, we’re able to bring an even more convenient shopping experience to Target’s guests,” said Annette Miller, senior vice president of grocery, Target. “Just in time for the busy holiday season, these newly remodeled stores will offer a one-stop shop for all shopping needs, including fresh foods.”

Nearly 1,100 Target stores currently offer an expanded food layout. At these Target stores, approximately 10,000 square feet is dedicated to a vast array of fresh food choices, including a curated assortment of fresh produce, fresh packaged meat and pre-packaged baked goods, in addition to dry and frozen offerings.

At the newly remodeled locations, Target’s guests will find a selection of national food brands, as well as award-winning Target owned brands, including Archer Farms premium foods, Market Pantry value staples and meal options and Sutton & Dodge premium quality USDA Choice beef.

[via Market Watch]

JC Penny, Mobile Check Out, Retail Localization

JC Penney to Eliminate Standard Checkout

JCPenney CEO Ron Johnson is on a mission to eliminate traditional checkout by the end of 2013. In its place, he’s pushing mobile and self-checkout, telling the audience at Fortune’s Brainstorm Tech conference in Aspen, Colo., yesterday that the stores will be 100-percent RFID (radio frequency identification) and Wi-Fi enabled, according to

Johnson said the overhaul would not only make customers happier about not waiting in lines, but the company would reinvest any savings it sees in customer service.

JC Penny, Mobile Check Out, Retail Localization

[via Retail Customer Experience]

JCPenny, Oracle, Retail Localization

J.C. Penney to Implement Complete Suite of Oracle Retail Applications

J. C. Penney Co. will implement a complete, open and integrated suite of Oracle Retail solutions designed to streamline operations and improve the cross-channel customer experience. The department store retailer will deploy applications in a host of critical areas, including merchandising, supply chain and store operation, to support its transformation initiatives.

JCPenny, Oracle, Retail Localization

“In order to become America’s Favorite Store, J.C. Penney must simplify our processes and our technology infrastructure to deliver the best possible customer experience,” said Ron Johnson, CEO, J.C. Penney. “A critical step on this journey is providing our team with better access to the information they need to make strategic business decisions, drive performance and exceed customer expectations.

The retailer will implement Oracle Retail applications for merchandising operations management, merchandise planning and optimization, supply chain planning and execution, and Oracle Retail’s stores solutions to simplify processes, reduce layers and equip business teams to better shape assortments and respond faster to customer preferences.

To help drive performance throughout the business, the chain will deploy Oracle Retail’s merchandising analytics business intelligence application, designed to provide merchants and planners with real-time, mobile insight to item and category performance, including key metrics such as inventory position, sales, stock ledger, cost, forecast and promotions.

[via ChainStoreAge]

Target and Neiman Marcus partner for Holiday 2012, retail localization

Target, Neiman Marcus join for Holiday Collection

They may make an odd couple, but discounter Target (TGT) and luxury merchant Neiman Marcus are jointly offering a limited collection spanning from fashion to sporting goods for the winter holidays.

Target and Neiman Marcus partner for Holiday 2012, retail localization

More than 50 products from 24 designers, including Oscar de la Renta and Diane von Furstenberg, as well as younger designers such as Derek Lam, will be available at both stores and on their websites starting Dec. 1 until they sell out. Items in the collection will cost from $7.99 to $499.99, but most will sell for less than $60.

“We definitely have our differences,” Kathee Tesija, Target’s executive vice president of merchandising, said of her company and Neiman Marcus. “They’re high end, and we’re mass appeal. But we both love design.”

Target pioneered the idea of low-price chains teaming with designers to create limited-time, affordable versions. It made headlines last fall with the bungled launch of a lower-price collection from Missoni that was so intensely anticipated that Target’s website crashed for almost an entire day, angering customers and leading to order cancellations.

But the partnership with Neiman Marcus is unprecedented. Target sells $25 dresses and generates almost half its revenue from staples like food and detergent, while Neiman Marcus has cultivated a reputation for expensive fashion, selling $1,000 shoes and $3,000 handbags.

Now, both want to grab a new segment of customers who are increasingly shopping around, checking out both higher- and lower-price stores. Target, whose sales growth has been uneven since the recession, is seeking new ways to boost its fashion image. And Neiman Marcus, whose affluent customers are back to splurging, needs to step outside its comfort zone to stay competitive. So it has to introduce itself to people who never considered shopping at the store where they can discover it also sells more affordable items for under $100, company executives said.

Both companies say they share a passion for design and cite one another’s strengths. Target praises Neiman Marcus’s long-standing relationships with designers, while Neiman lauds Target’s ability to sell massive quantities of products of high quality.

Wanda Gierhart, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at The Neiman Marcus Group, described the partnership as a “modern approach” to cross-shopping.

“Customers love innovation, and they want a surprising shopping experience,” she added.

Target, with more than 1,700 stores, and Neiman Marcus, which has 42, have been trying to work together for a couple years, but nothing gelled until Neiman Marcus suggested a holiday collection, Gierhart said. It took just about a week to get the 24 designers in tow.

A 50-member team of executives from both companies developed the collection, traveling from Target’s Minneapolis headquarters to Neiman Marcus’s in Dallas to the offices of designers in New York. The collection will have its own area in each store, though the shops at Neiman and Target won’t be exactly the same.

[via CBS News]