PROFILE

Charles Dimov

Vice President of Marketing, OrderDynamics
Charles Dimov is Vice President of Marketing at OrderDynamics. Charles has 21+ years experience in Marketing, Sales and Management across various IT and Technology businesses. Previous roles include Chief of Staff, Director Product Marketing, Director Sales, and Category Manager. Charles has held roles in brand name firms like IBM, Ericsson, HP, ADP, and OrderDynamics. To learn more, visit: www.OrderDynamics.com
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  • Posted on: 06/05/2019

    Walmart’s checkout pilot puts shoppers in the fast lane

    It's great that Walmart continues to test its processes. I like the idea of the fast lane. At the very least, it will bring greater attention to the option of using your smartphone for a fast checkout process. Walmart is on the right track by testing, observing, and adjusting. It takes patience, perseverance, and an openness to change. I just don't believe that any single method of checkout is going to dominate. Yes, an Amazon Go-like experience would be ideal. but for Walmart there is a very high variety of shoppers with all their own preferences. Some will like scan-and-go, others will be good with self-checkout (standard), while others will want the traditional checkout with a human cashier. I think we will have a multi-checkout model for a few more years, at the very least.
  • Posted on: 06/04/2019

    Will delivering online orders seven days a week further transform retail ops?

    I don't think it is going to raise the bar... rather it is about keeping up with today's expectations. Retailers like Amazon have brought in the idea of same-day and next-day delivery. As such, the carriers either adapt to mirror this offering, or they will become a non-preferred carrier. It is a fact of the market. For retailers already offering ship-from-store or BOPIS, same-day delivery means they will have to ensure they are sufficiently staffed to be able to handle the orders, load, and timing expectations. Basically more powerful and smarter DOMs (distributed order management systems) will have to step in to handle this logistics challenge (where to route for speed and effectiveness). This is an exciting new realm in retail!
  • Posted on: 06/04/2019

    Will a new mobile app build IKEA’s furniture sales?

    It's smart to create a mobile optimized experience. Only 8 percent of U.S. retailers have a mobile app or m-commerce optimized site (20 percent have responsive sites - good but not ideal). So IKEA getting a mobile app is a great step forward. The demographic for IKEA is youthful and innovative. Mobile apps fit that description perfectly. However, they really need to get the purchasing part fixed, fast. Customers want to buy and put in an order on the app. Then let them choose the fulfillment (delivery, in-store pickup ...).
  • Posted on: 06/04/2019

    Walmart to expand its talent pipeline with a debt-free college plan for high schoolers

    Interestingly enough, my son just applied to a few retail jobs as a high school senior. He was enthusiastic about it, as he had done municipal work (lifeguard), corporate work in marketing, and wanted to round it out with some retail experience. One of the biggest barriers is just getting your foot in the door when the student has no associated experience. This is a fantastic initiative from Walmart. Very smart for both endearing the public to Walmart and for creating loyalty among its staff. It is always good to get in early - with your employees.
  • Posted on: 06/03/2019

    Experience is overrated, hire talent

    I completely agree with you about personality and attitude. The worst thing is to bring on someone who has the aptitude (technical capabilities), but has a terrible attitude about the work.
  • Posted on: 06/03/2019

    Will the price of avocados make Americans say enough to Trump’s tariffs?

    The scary part is that the administration seems to forget that U.S. consumers are the collateral damage in these trade wars (tariff wars). Of course all this negatively impacts retailers. That ends up reducing jobs (people are laid off) as demand slows (people tighten their belts). And all this has a downward spiraling effect. Will a small increase in the price of avocados spur a revolution? NO. The scary part is that after further escalations, higher prices of commodities and goods, the economy will start showing the impact of these decisions. By the time we see the impact, the negative spiral may already be in full swing. That's scary... because then stopping or slowing it down is very difficult. To prepare, retailers need to find their differentiators and make sure they have multiple sources for their goods. Don't be dependent only on Mexico, or China, or any other single source. Always have alternatives ... because those will probably become necessary if things keep on the current path. Then find the items that are less price sensitive. On these, make sure you provide great experiences, to encourage shoppers to choose your retail business when they want those products! Good luck ... we all need it!
  • Posted on: 06/03/2019

    What would Amazon do with Boost Mobile?

    Adding Boost to the Prime bundle would be an enticing offer for customers. I can see them capturing market share quite fast with this approach. At some point, I can even imagine Amazon offering a discount for customers that allow push ads and commercials. Monopolies and oligopolies are bad for consumers. So having another viable player added to the mix to disrupt telecom is a good thing. This would certainly shake up the industry. At least in the short term, you would see retention options thrown at current customers, and sweeter new deals in preparation for Amazon's entry. All good for consumers.
  • Posted on: 06/03/2019

    Experience is overrated, hire talent

    This is a great philosophical position - but in a 30-60 minute interview assessing talent is challenging. The best indicator we have of the future is past experience and performance. Ultimately, it has to be a balanced view. Look for experience where the candidate has a relevant background, then do the best you can to assess for talent. Generally, talent will come through in the experience storyline. Other things to look for in candidates are: have they have done anything to step toward the career they want? Have they engaged in speaking courses or programs (if they are going to be front line communicators, such as store staff)? Have they volunteered where that experience can be related or relevant to the job at hand? The best advice is to get them engaged on a short, paid project. Get them to show you that they actually have the capabilities of doing the job. Then assess your candidates based on that work, as part of the mix.
  • Posted on: 05/31/2019

    Consumers are changing – or not – in ways that retailers may not understand

    Tech adoption has skyrocketed with consumers. Gen X, Millennials and Gen Z are naturals at tech, and use it in their shopping. Hence the potential for m-commerce. Frankly it is already here, as so many shoppers use their smartphone in-store to price check, shop around, and read up on features/capabilities/benefits/patterns... I agree with Bob that rentals are the next big boom. I wonder if we won't soon be in a world where half of your clothes are owned (the basics) and half rented (within 10 years).
  • Posted on: 05/31/2019

    Do retailers have an online reputation management problem?

    Control what you can, and do this well. Chatter outside channels you can influence is just noise. You can use PR, social media, marketing, the buying experience, and brand awareness to influence consumers - but you cannot control them. So focus on what you can control or influence - to the best of your organization's capacity. Sales performance can be directly influenced by Word of Mouth (WOM) and influencers. As such WOM and influencer programs can often help drive more sales. Don't just focus on the world famous superstars, though. Today, retailers and CPGs are getting much more bang for their buck from the micro-influencers.
  • Posted on: 05/31/2019

    What if unwanted online purchases didn’t have to be returned?

    This is a creative idea that has clearly already been in play. If a product is below a certain dollar value, then this is a great idea. It saves the retailer the cost of the return shipping and processing. Frankly, it has the potential of improving the brand image (free gift), and even spreading the news of the brand with WOM. If you have it as a standard procedure, you risk the market learning about it and being flooded with fake returns. You just cannot count on everyone acting ethically. The best option is to use it sparingly. Below a certain dollar value - gift the returnable item to the customer. For other items in the grey zone, gift the item to the customer randomly, or based on the customer profile. The order management system tells retailers who are chronic returners (don't gift things to these folk), and who are good light returning customers. Reward your good customers.
  • Posted on: 05/30/2019

    How can retailers help employees improve? (Hint: Not by criticizing them)

    Too many times fixing weaknesses takes center stage. I agree with the premise that managers need to focus on team members' individual capabilities and strengths - then work with that. I fully support the research that basically points to working on strengthening, polishing, and helping employees shine brighter with their strengths, rather than focusing too much time on remedials, or improving on weaknesses. Naturally this has to be within reason. If an employee has a habit of rudely chewing gum loudly with their mouth open, in front of customers -- this needs to be addressed to ensure you are representing your brand professionally. All told, you are just going to get better performance and improvements when you help associates do better at what they already do well. That's what they like, and will learn at - most readily.
  • Posted on: 05/28/2019

    How should retailers best on-board seasonal staff?

    Great list of tips for store managers, retailers and brands. Train your staff, regardless of whether they are full time or seasonal. Always think about the customer experience. If training is going to help a customer have a more informed, pleasant, or effective buyers journey - then train all of your staff. For full time staffers, you will want to provide greater depth. These folk are going to be with you longer. They need to have the expertise, and depth of knowing how to use your systems and all the ins-and-outs of your product lines.
  • Posted on: 05/23/2019

    Can a startup undercut Rent the Runway in the clothing rental space?

    Pricing is totally dependent on the value that customers perceive from the service. If Haverdash, Rent the Runway, and others do a good job, I can easily see this becoming a much more accepted approach, that brings flair and change to a consumer's wardrobe. $50 per month seems VERY reasonable. There is no reason why $100/month is not a boundary that can be broken. In fact, I think the $200-$500/month category is an open market for luxury goods and clothing. Hmmm... maybe there is a startup idea here somewhere!
  • Posted on: 05/15/2019

    Why is Amazon paying employees to quit their jobs?

    Wow. Impressed by the fresh concept that Amazon is taking. Given the driver shortages, why not use some of your own best people? People who know, live and breath the Amazon philosophy and culture. That's creative. Fix the market shortfall for yourself. Although this is a very creative, out-of-the-box idea, I just don't see too many other retailers following suit. I think now there is a good opportunity for the traditional DSPs to step up and position their own capabilities and expertise - unlike the stream of new, small startups.
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