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Mark Heckman

Principal
Mark Heckman Consulting

Target is smart to head quickly in this direction. There are clearly frequently purchased, commodity categories that shoppers will be willing to buy on a subscription basis as long as the price is competitive and the service is accurate.

There are multiple potential benefits. In addition to protecting sales loss...

Walmart should be cautious about eliminating too many "slow movers," as they may trade one problem for another if they are deemed to be void of variety once they complete their SKU rationalization. Out-of-stocks (OOS) can certainly be tamed by understanding the space to sales ratios on the shelf...

Retailers tend to focus on problems that touch the most customers and affect the most dollars. For many, this relegates omni-channel matters to the second or third page of the list. Clearly, this is a mistake. The future of many of these retailers rest in their ability to anticipate...

Middle class income drop and food inflation is not a good combination for traditional supermarkets who have heavily relied on convenience and amenities to overcome the higher prices they charge. Having visited a WinCo recently, I was surprised to see how many seemingly upscale and upper middle income families...

The combined companies will bring them closer in size and clout to Kroger, which Kroger can't be too excited about, given Kroger's current ability to command CPG support and monies due to their dominant size and market coverage.

More interesting to me is seeing who becomes the "dog" and who...

Email lists still remaining among the most efficient and cost effective ways to communicate with potential shoppers. Those that have been described by Tom Rapsas as candidates for "unsubscribing" either have not evolved to a level of targeting sophistication to offer relevant, customized content, and/or they still believe it...

Bricks and mortar retailers have the advantage over Amazon and others of knowing how to build, merchandise, and operate physical stores. However, they lose that advantage if they are unable or unwilling to connect the in-store environment to their own emerging omni-channel efforts.

My fervent believe is the retailers that...

As Amazon extends it reach into the critical mass of shoppers, promotions will inevitably become a more significant piece of their business. While adjustments must be made to protect margins for Amazon, they will be smart to play with price trackers and others that bring volume to their business....

As the shopping masses continue to embrace internet search, online advertising, and social media as measurable steps towards a purchase, all parties involved, (retailer, brand, media agents) will continuously need to target, invent new engagement methods, and be in position to measure and refine. Keeping in my the "brand-building"...

Cerberus has quite frankly surprised me a bit with their apparent success with expanding Albertsons while either maintaining or actually growing sales. I was doubtful they would be able to pull that off. IF they are the phantom suitor for Safeway, they will be tested once again with the...

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