[Image of: RetailWire Logo and Tagline (for print)]

Also from Cathy Hotka...

Links by Cathy

 
[Image of: Cathy Hotka]

Cathy Hotka

Principal
Cathy Hotka & Associates

The key part of this column is the observation that transactions should be simple. If associates can assist with choosing merchandise and then affect a transaction easily, that's a win for everyone. And retailers are taking all kinds of different approaches to figuring it out.

...

Whole Foods (pictured above) is the gold standard—no customer is ever "in the wrong lane." In my experience, though, most checkout problems are caused by failing to staff up adequately. The process of checking out isn't inherently inefficient, but having three checkers for 25 customers is.

...

I don't see it. Unless the number of retailers grows, the program won't be top-of-mind for customers. Is it just me, or is the plethora of rewards programs—credit card programs and e-bates among them—just a little overwhelming?

...

This inane name sounds like a consequence of having too few women in the executive suite...as did those pink Bic "pens for women." Come on, now.

...

The format of a review doesn't matter, but the review itself is becoming very important to purchasers who want the inside scoop before buying. Previous purchasers of the bath vanity I'm looking at, for instance, report that it can be difficult to install in certain situations. We've reached the...

I'm certain that one reason why digital marketing is relatively ineffective is its ubiquity. Why is an email from my favorite drugstore—you know who you are—going to stand out when I get one every single day?

And to Paula's point, even with all the talk about iBeacons, I haven't yet...

One look at the explosive growth of YouTube and the incredible popularity of how-to videos shows video's staying power. Good for Michaels for climbing on the bandwagon, and appealing to younger customers.

...

This Congress can't agree on anything more sophisticated than naming post offices. They're not even sure they want to keep Homeland Security open. There's pretty much a zero chance that Congress will agree to a restructuring of the sales tax.

...

The phone obviated the need for a watch. It'll take years to lure people back to watches....

...

Paula's right. The old Target, the one that didn't sell commodity products, had a truly compelling value proposition for customers—great style at a good price. The new Target tends to sell items that customers can find elsewhere, which only fuels a pricing race to the bottom. It's time for...

Search RetailWire
Follow Us...
[Image of:  Twitter Icon] [Image of:  Facebook Icon] [Image of:  LinkedIn Icon] [Image of:  RSS Icon]

RetailWire's
Getting Started video!

View this quick tutorial and learn all the essentials...

RetailWire Newsletters