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Also from Cathy Hotka...

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Cathy Hotka

Principal
Cathy Hotka & Associates

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...

What a great idea.

Think about the market—older airports, colleges, restaurants, upscale retail. Many furniture manufacturers will get into the game because there are huge profits to be made. Kudos to IKEA for a first-mover advantage.

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The technology may well advance beyond what retailers can manage. Mr. Shuster says "everything you see is your size," but it will be a serious challenge for retailers to translate that fit into a given size number. (At H&M I'm a medium, but at J. Crew I'm an extra...

There's just no question that working parents in retail jobs need predictability in scheduling. It's one thing to decry the crazy-high cost of child care, but another thing entirely not to know when you're going to need it.

It's disappointing that NRF would deny it.

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Free shipping lights up the antediluvian, reptile portion of the brain. We love it.

By doing this, Target is telling people that they can buy online pretty much whenever they want, rather than having to wait until they need several things. We'll have to wait to see how the economics...

I was baffled this morning when I noticed that my local Neiman Marcus has a points program.

I'd love to get a bunch of regular consumers together and ask them whether they'd like a new points program, with a new password to remember or plastic card to carry around. I...

I'll (again) agree with Paula. Walmart's customer base reflects its employee base, and there isn't an American alive who hasn't heard about the company's record profits and underpaid workforce. This is just one move Walmart will need to make to improve its reputation.

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I was lucky enough to attend a presentation by Don Meij, and it was hugely compelling. User-customized food offerings have been an enduring hit at Chipotle, and the Australian Domino's app, created by ThoughtWorks, has been a game-changer. Expect more of this—customers love it.

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A number of store operators say their associates aren't incented to use handhelds, resulting in "organ rejection"—phones in drawers. Retailers who make a plan then work with it see better results.

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Trader Joe's, for having checkers at the ready to speed me through. (The grocery store nearest me is always surprised—shocked!—that customers have arrived.)

Chipotle, for letting me choose every aspect of my meal.

Sephora, for unlimited sampling.

New York & Company, for catering to those of us who are unusual sizes.

Thank you!

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