PROFILE

George Anderson

Editor-in-Chief, RetailWire
George Anderson has extensive executive-level experience in editorial, marketing and sales in the advertising, retail/wholesale and print, video and digital media industries. Mr. Anderson has served as the editorial voice of RetailWire since the site's founding in 2002 and has been interviewed by a wide variety of media outlets including the Charlotte Observer, Providence Journal, MarketWatch, NPR, Wall Street Journal Radio and others. Previously, Mr. Anderson served as president and creative director of the IdeaBeat Creative division of IdeaBeat.com. His duties included creating Online Profit Guides and Company Spotlights recognized as "Best of the Net" by About.com for a blue-chip list of consumer goods manufacturers and technology companies. Before joining IdeaBeat, Mr. Anderson created a successful sales and marketing communications and custom publishing company called Not Your Average Agency. Mr. Anderson's experience includes eight years with Progressive Grocer Associates/Maclean Hunter Media, where he held a variety of marketing services and sales management roles. His assignments included work in the company's four divisions including Progressive Grocer, Frozen Food Age, Retail Technology, and Retail Insights (Supermarket Insights and Convenience Store Insights video division.) For editorial inquiries, please contact George at: RetailWire 116 South Union Avenue Cranford, NJ 07016 908-325-2499
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  • Posted on: 01/28/2022

    Should retailers add RFID to their marketing toolbox?

    Retailers have made major investments in RFID to this point but the technology does have its limitations. There are also new Bluetooth-based alternatives coming to market that may have a lower cost of entry than going the RFID route. We came across some in our NRF Show-related discussions and they appear to hold promise. Only real world vetting will prove that one way or the other.
  • Posted on: 01/26/2022

    Amazon Go is going big(ger) in suburban locations

    If only Aldi or Lidl had a "Just Walk Out' experience they'd attract more shoppers who don't want to deal with the mad dash of trying to bag your purchases quickly enough to not hold up those in line behind you.
  • Posted on: 01/26/2022

    Can Amazon reverse the flight of its tech workers?

    The Org's report listed in the article's sources said that 50 VPs left Amazon in two years. The other articles rely on individuals currently working at Amazon or those who chose to leave it like Sarah Schnierer as sources for their reporting. Amazon sources, current and past, have told us that the company is facing challenges when it comes to employee retention throughout the organization.
  • Posted on: 01/25/2022

    Will 2022 be the year of trading down at retail?

    I think Business Insider's point was that sales slowed in December and that it's common for revenues to take a step back following the holidays. This, in and of itself, could somewhat reduce some of the pressures that manufacturers and retailers feel in filling supply chain gaps. Americans have not dealt with this type of inflationary pressure going back to the eighties.
  • Posted on: 01/04/2022

    Omicron threatens to mess retail up

    While shopping online is no doubt a option that many will choose, supply chain issues are an ongoing reality and the list goes on and on. Here's just some of what I've noticed locally in the past week. Trader Joe's had more empty shelf space days before New Year's Eve than I've seen in decades of shopping the chain. Target stores here, never known for being very good at maintaining inventory, have been bad by their own standards. Online orders placed with Whole Foods for pickup come back with OOS notices. Local pharmacies are out-of-stock on COVID testing kits or limiting purchase amounts to try to stay in-stock.
  • Posted on: 01/03/2022

    Hy-Vee creates its own armed security squad to deter crime

    Armed security guards will be a non-issue at the vast majority of locations, but I would like to know more about the training involved to be a member of Hy-Vee's team since it only takes one error of judgment to tarnish the chain's image in the communities it serves. Retailers since the beginning of the pandemic have been trying to keep associates and customers safe by instituting mask requirements and social distancing measures. Will this now mean employees with firearms will be given the duty to make sure that corporate safety rules are followed? What about dealing with mentally ill people or those under the influence who behave erratically in stores? Police forces around the country have not always done well in this regard. Will Hy-Vee or other retailers with their own security squads do better?
  • Posted on: 12/02/2021

    Is Amazon gouging its marketplace sellers?

    An Amazon spokesperson provided the following statement to RetailWire. "This report is intentionally misleading because it conflates Amazon’s selling fees with the cost of optional services that some sellers purchase from Amazon such as logistics and advertising. Amazon’s selling fees range from 8-17% of the selling price for most products and have remained largely unchanged in the U.S. These selling fees are highly competitive when compared to other selling options such as marketplaces like Walmart, Target, eBay, Etsy, and others, or direct-to-consumer via companies like Shopify and BigCommerce. Some sellers purchase logistics services from Amazon, or choose alternatives, like UPS, DHL, and Fedex. The sellers who use our logistics service, called Fulfilment by Amazon, enjoy fulfillment services 30% cheaper than other logistics providers, and with much faster shipping. Some sellers also choose to purchase advertising from Amazon or use other advertising providers like Google, Facebook, and Twitter. Sellers are not required to use our logistics or advertising services, and only use them if they provide incremental value to their businesses."
  • Posted on: 12/02/2021

    Is Amazon gouging its marketplace sellers?

    Danny Boockvar, president of Thrasio, the largest aggregator of marketplace sellers on Amazon, has sent us his take via email. "We haven't seen a significant jump in the fees that we're paying Amazon. In general, Amazon is rational and transparent about fee adjustments, and they give sellers plenty of notice so they can adapt. We can't speak to what percentage of each sale goes to Amazon, but sellers have options for how they set up their accounts and manage fees. There is a 15% referral fee that we all pay. Beyond that, there are a bunch of optional services---for example, could be an additional 10% if you opt in for Amazon marketing services, another 7-15% if you choose their logistics and fulfillment. Amazon's marketing and fulfillment services are terrific, so a lot of small businesses are paying those fees, and they're doing so because the services positively impact their bottom lines. It's in Amazon's best interest to have a robust Marketplace with happy, successful sellers, and they manage that accordingly. We've been extremely happy to work with them, and we continue to feel that they offer sellers great value and opportunity at a fair price."
  • Posted on: 11/30/2021

    Is Small Business Saturday losing steam?

    George, I find no fault in your assessment that small retailers probably did just fine on Saturday. You know this segment of the market better than most. Your logic that one group (CNBC) with nothing to gain or lose from a survey finding is somehow more likely to be biased than one (American Express) with actual skin in the game is not, does elude me, I'll admit.
  • Posted on: 11/18/2021

    Starbucks and Amazon open first joint concept store with more to come

    You could, however, order your Starbucks drink in advance and then go pick up what you need at Amazon Go in the meantime. Your Starbucks order should be done when you leave Amazon Go. Not the ultimate convenience but convenient nonetheless.
  • Posted on: 10/20/2021

    Instacart aims to transform in-store shopping with smart cart/checkout acquisition

    Fidji Simo was brought in as CEO with the stated goal of driving Instacart's digital ad revenues. The Caper acquisition seems like a good opportunity for the former Facebook exec to drive incremental ad sales through the smart cart screens.
  • Posted on: 10/12/2021

    Should advertisers delete Facebook?

    Personally Identifiable Information, I believe.
  • Posted on: 09/28/2021

    Why are retailers falling short of their hiring goals?

    Someone I know very well with an advanced degree told me not long ago about their unfruitful job search where a help wanted description listed a dozen or so requirements to be considered for employment. She said that she'd be able to tick off 9, 10 or 11 of the 12 boxes but never as much as a follow up from the employers. I wonder now if an AI system looking for perfect candidates may have played a part. Fortunately, she has since found a job she loves and is no longer actively seeking new employment.
  • Posted on: 09/28/2021

    Whole Foods goes from free to $10 grocery delivery fee for Amazon Prime members

    Those options, both more profitable for Whole Foods and other grocers, is having customers pick up their purchases outside or in the store. Even better yet is having customers handling the job of picking and transporting their own groceries.
  • Posted on: 09/24/2021

    Destination XL Group proves a unique fit for customers who don’t like to shop

    Another interesting aspect of my conversation with Harvey Kanter was his acknowledgement that pickup, particularly curbside, jumped as a percentage of total sales during the early going of the pandemic. DXLG managed to bring in new customers during that period who were buying from the chain but had not actually shopped in its stores. In more recent months, however, more of these new customers are getting out of their cars and trucks to go into stores where they are not only picking up their orders but frequently shopping and adding items to their cart in the process.

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