PROFILE

Lee Kent

Principal, Your Retail Authority, LLC
Ms. Kent is Owner/Principal of Your Retail Authority, LLC. and creator of Retail’s former Social Network, TheRetailTradecenter.com. She is recognized by retail industry insiders as an authority on retailing and is a seasoned user of new media strategies. Lee likes to talk and exchange ideas about retail particularly on the in-store path to purchase and customer experience design. Look for invitations from Lee to exclusive Retail executive events. You can find her opinions most days on the Retail Wire where she is happy to share her 2 cents.

Lee's current practice focuses on uncovering a brands point of view, customer promises and ability to deliver on them through the creation and/or co-creation of thought leadership initiatives.

In addition to talking endlessly about her passion, Retail, she has directed numerous consulting and strategic initiative engagements. Her clients have included world-renowned companies as well as software providers and start-ups. Lee has served as the NA Retail Industry Practice Leader for a major global managed services provider, Retail Technology Consulting Principal for a Big 4 consulting firm, Director Supplier Management and Integration for an e-commerce start-up venture, Director of Managed Services for a major retail company and has brought her subject matter expertise to smaller organizations in order to help them build strong retail practices.

To learn more, visit <b><a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/leekent">Lee's LinkedIn profile...</a></b>
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  • Posted on: 06/23/2017

    Should brands ditch the slang?

    You hit that one on the nose, Tom! I can't add a thing for my 2 cents! I'm southern and boy it's awful listening to people try to imitate our cadence.
  • Posted on: 06/21/2017

    How did mobile become the ‘glue’ in the Sephora shopping experience?

    Using any technology just for technology sake is not a good idea but providing customers with a valued service? That is what wins. Sephora has done just that and quite successfully! I especially like the Virtual Artist module so one can try new things and see how it will look on them before they buy. Cool!For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/21/2017

    Will Amazon Prime Wardrobe change how Americans shop for clothes?

    Pardon my stating the obvious but, aside from the added discounts for keeping multiple items, isn't this the way consumers are buying today? The reason that returns are so out of hand? Consumers are buying multiple things and keeping only one. While it has disrupted the way people shop, it has also created many problems for retailers such as increased expenses related to shipping and returns. Neither of which are small potatoes.And that is my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/20/2017

    Can humanizing self-checkouts reduce theft?

    By now consumers are so accustomed to interacting with computers, I really don't think personalization will do the trick. If a consumer is intent on stealing, they would steal from cute little Alexa without batting an eye. As long as they think they can't be seen. The answer is more direct cameras, warnings and prosecution.But that's just my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/20/2017

    Will UPS’s Black Friday delivery surcharge have retailers seeing red?

    Perhaps now is the time for full disclosure. UPS can't give away their busiest season any more than retailers can. Show the consumer what it costs to ship during these times and offer them options. Maybe even give breaks to loyal customers or minimum purchases. We can't keep giving away the farm.For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/19/2017

    Did Amazon just patent tech that could end showrooming in its stores?

    Amazon would be crazy to deploy the technology in any negative way. If they want to use it in order to send an employee to assist, great. Amazon will soon be joining the many other retailers who have learned to accept showrooming for what it is and to find other ways to provide their customers experiences and services that will win their dollars.For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/15/2017

    Are consumers ready to use automated purchasing tech on a wide scale?

    The consumer is ready to auto-order as long as the retailer gives them what they want. That goes beyond convenience. Yes they want convenience but they also want it when, where and how they want it and at the price they want. As a retail-minded person, I want to give the consumer what they want but, and this is a big but, at what price? The buck has to stop somewhere and I'm not sure where that is. Can retailers continue to give away shipping? Offer the best price? I have liked the subscription services the best but if the subscription is just one thing, again, the retailer loses on shipping. Perhaps certain subscriptions must be picked up somewhere while bundles can be direct shipped. The answer is to get smart about the offerings. Maybe we can't give the consumer anything and everything but we can sure try to give them the most.For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/14/2017

    Can fitness centers save malls?

    Of course! This is a great idea and use of mall space. Malls are destinations and can house anything. They do not, as we have learned, have to be all about shopping. Consumers want convenience and experiences. It's past time to think outside the box. So to speak.For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/13/2017

    Has Rainbow Shops created a compensation model aligned with omnichannel realities?

    This is smart thinking to address the problem today, however it is high time for retail to start thinking about sales in other ways. With more and more sales being done online and more ship-from-stores, pick up in stores and ship from one store to another for sales, the ways that stores are measured needs to be rethought entirely. And that includes making the employee feel like they are part of the same team!For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/06/2017

    Is UNTUCKit the next big thing in apparel retailing?

    "'There is a renaissance happening in retail that favors brands who can directly connect with and understand their consumers,' said Mood Rowghani," (from the article above) and that, in my opinion, is the trick. Whether the brand begins their journey online or off. This brand was able to start online, which requires a different approach to marketing in order to identify their customer base and get the right products to them, and they were successful. The next step was to move into brick-and-mortar. Again, it's all about connecting, understanding and giving the consumer what they want. Is that scalable? You bet!For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/05/2017

    Does store operations have a seat at the digital transformation table?

    Having spent my life in retail, it is sad to see that the stores are still being left out of the planning sessions. After all, the store is what the consumer sees and interacts with so how is retail transformed without the stores? Yes, I know, any transformation eventually makes it to the store but I learned many moons ago what a mistake it was for us to design a solution without store participation and then try to roll out said solution only to find the store couldn't work with it or it didn't meet the real need.Now the question asked, can stores move fast enough? In today's digital environment and with the tools and technology we have access to? Sure they can. And even better, we have all become such digital creatures that we can adapt very quickly ... especially the younger folks that actually work in the stores. So let's bring the stores to the planning table and get it right this time. We need to!For my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/02/2017

    Could 3-D tech move apparel manufacturing into stores?

    I've seen it and I've heard the spiels but i still don't get it. They say they can make it in a reasonable time? I get that. They say it's cost effective? I don't get that. How can making garments one at a time be more cost effective than running off many across a production line?That aside, fast-to-market is the rage these days and I do see 3-D picking up. I'm just not sure that consumers will want to go shopping in a place jam-packed with 3-D printers. Just one won't cut it if all the manufacturing is being done in-store. And if the concept is to order and pick-up, is manufacturing in-store really the answer? Production closer to the consumer yes. In-store? I think there is much planning and testing yet to be done. Ding me if you must but that's my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/02/2017

    Can Walmart workers deliver better last mile results on their way home from work?

    As always, there are ups and downs to this concept. I applaud Walmart for thinking outside of the box however I do see how messy this might be to manage. The employees sound like they want flexibility in this but Walmart has still made promises to the customers. How do you manage a moving target like that? I'm not sure but am interested to see. And that's my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 06/01/2017

    Retail mash-up: What if Macy’s and Disney had a baby?

    Disney knows all about delivering great experiences but maybe not so much about retail and Macy's knows about retail but maybe not so much about experiences. Could they learn from each other? You bet. But we must not forget that the objectives of the two are very different. Disney captures and uses customer data to move people through their parks and to make the ebb and flow better in congested areas. They deliver experiences right where the people are. Experiences involve their magical kingdom and all its characters and this makes customers want to take a piece of it home. Macy's, on the other hand, would have to determine their experiential objectives first. They aren't trying to create a magical kingdom with memorable characters but perhaps a fun place to spend a Saturday and take home something for date night. I'll have to put on my thinking cap a little longer for this one. But that's my 2 cents.
  • Posted on: 05/31/2017

    Will customers try Kohler showers before they buy?

    All I can add is, if you haven't visited a PIRCH, you should! The brand, the culture, the experience, the story, everything about it is all about the customer. And it's paying off! For my 2 cents.

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