Lisa Goller

Content Marketing Strategist
Lisa Goller, MBA is a content marketing entrepreneur who serves retail tech companies in the U.S., China, India and Europe. Lisa has appeared in Forbes, Entrepreneur and Inc., sharing more than 15 years of retail and marketing expertise. Connect with Lisa on LinkedIn.
  • Posted on: 02/22/2019

    Will the ‘c’ in c-stores soon stand for cannabis?

    Once legal, sales of cannabis edibles are poised to skyrocket. That’s because eating and drinking cannabis is cleaner, more discreet and more socially acceptable than smoking or vaping cannabis. Grocery and pharmacy retail stores make strategic sense for distribution, as demand for products containing cannabis and CBD has increased across the food, beverage, beauty and healthcare categories. As long as grocery, pharmacy and convenience stores can protect minors from accessing cannabis, it makes sense to for them to sell cannabis products as an alternative to cigarettes and alcohol because studies prove these legal substances have comparatively higher health and societal costs.
  • Posted on: 02/12/2019

    Will Marie Kondo de-clutter retail?

    “The things you own end up owning you.” This famous line from the movie Fight Club reminds of: 1) Marie Kondo’s philosophy of decluttering; and 2) The fascinating contrast in consumption habits between the Silent Generation and younger consumers. After surviving the traumatic stress of wartime, the Silent Generation came to equate consumption and ownership with success. For them, more is more. Currently, several of my older relatives feel burdened by an urgent need to declutter their homes to proactively get their affairs in order. They also feel baffled: they can’t understand why their sprawling, treasured collections (from jewelry and crystal figurines to chinaware and antique furniture) fail to attract new buyers. By contrast, younger generations of shoppers have a more discerning approach to consumption, preferring simplicity, experiences and meaning (including sustainability). For them, less is more. Marie Kondo has struck a chord with global audiences because shopping behaviors and consumption mindsets have evolved over the generations. Now we’re considering the environmental impact of buying fast fashion, collectibles and especially excessive plastic packaging, which research suggests is a consumer trend that’s just getting started.
  • Posted on: 01/18/2019

    NRF: Attendees show performance anxiety for 2019

    Political, economic and social factors will influence retail in 2019. Politically, this year more brands will differentiate themselves with purpose and politics, including the deliberate decision to speak up for their values amid political tension (despite the risk of consumer backlash, such as burning Nike sneakers). Economically, growing income disparity led research firm IRI to predict far greater demand for value-tier products this year to help lower income consumers stretch every dollar even further. Socially, consumers have become far more informed about how their shopping choices affect their health and wellness, and their safety. This year, more shoppers will opt for more low-sugar products and less plastic packaging (because, beyond environmental harm, the American Academy of Pediatrics warns against plastic food containers due to health risks). In addition, the need to invest in technology to keep up with the blistering pace of innovation across business sectors also impacts retail.
  • Posted on: 11/15/2018

    I don’t like Amazon as much as I did last week

    Did the HQ2 hulabaloo affect Amazon's image? Yes. For the short term. Many people see the bid process as a genius yet shady data and incentives grab -- benefits the 238 cities willingly provided. Yet Amazon is all about capitalism, not altruism. Sure, it would have been a heartwarming, Hallmark-inspired holiday gesture for Amazon to rescue a less prosperous location. However, is it realistic to expect the e-commerce giant to resuscitate cities? For corporate social responsibility, the Bezos Fund donated $2 billion for the homeless and child care. Quick final thoughts: 1. Any harm to Amazon's image will be very short-term, as many of us will be lured back this month for irresistible Black Friday deals. 2. Let's acknowledge that Amazon has sprinkled retail love across the continent over the past year, creating thousands of new jobs in fulfillment centers (including Houston, Atlanta, Miami, Vancouver, Calgary and Ottawa). 3. Prescient Professor Scott Galloway should buy a lottery ticket.
  • Posted on: 11/09/2018

    Retailers need to focus on customer lifetime value for long-term success

    This model explains recent private label investments. Driven by data on what's in demand, more retailers -- including Amazon, Walmart, Kroger, Target and Aldi -- are creating their own private brands to increase loyalty and lifetime value per customer. For instance, if we love Jack & Cat girls' dresses and Simple Truth organic products, we can only visit Target and Kroger, respectively, to buy those exclusive product lines. As for key success factors, constantly listening to consumers through data analysis, adapting those insights into unique, quality products, and selling a variety of exclusive items can help retailers retain consumers over the long-term.
  • Posted on: 11/06/2018

    Why aren’t women buying Amazon’s private label clothing?

    Sure Amazon’s apparel results could use a boost, and ASOS, Boohoo and Zara might feel relieved for now. However Amazon’s always looking ahead, including adapting to two key trends:
    • Private label as a differentiator: More retailers (including Walmart and Target) are turning to private labels to deliver exclusive products that can enhance loyalty, especially since loyalty toward national brands is fading. Private brands have evolved into brands in their own right, and private label helps to distinguish Amazon's assortment from rivals'.
    • Voice shopping: Voice-driven purchases are poised to explode from $2 billion today to $40 billion by 2022, so private labels in apparel and other categories will give Amazon a huge edge. When voice shoppers make a first-time purchase without specifying a brand, Alexa recommends Amazon’s most popular private label products first.
    That’s why Amazon’s apparel strategy is a wise medium-term investment that acknowledges how consumer behavior is evolving due to a growing desire for convenience, ease and time savings.
  • Posted on: 10/29/2018

    Can Brandless deliver on its lofty goals in a pop-up?

    Brandless’s pop-up goals are wise, distinguishing the company’s focus on people and purpose (vs. products and profits). Here’s how:
    • Strategic growth: By getting in consumers’ faces (if only for a limited time), Brandless will boost awareness and engagement, namely among shoppers who have not purchased from their website
    • Multisensory experience: Physical stores offer a far richer experience than e-commerce. Brandless’s pop-up allows consumers to taste food samples, smell fair-trade coffee and touch products to feel the quality rather than rely on online peer reviews for confident consumption
    • Social shopping: This limited-time experience can spark consumers’ fear of missing out, boost word of mouth, and encourage friends and colleagues to visit Brandless together in person. A pop-up is more fun and social than a solitary e-commerce experience. Also, consumers can receive immediate answers from store associates, further building brand trust.
    Overall, the pop-up will expand Brandless’s market reach, and showcase its agility at adapting to diverse tastes and consumer values.
  • Posted on: 10/23/2018

    Why haven’t CPG giants figured out what makes small brands so popular?

    Since 2015 I’ve collaborated with a company that connects huge retailers to small, popular brands, so I see this trend firsthand. Smaller brands excel at listening to consumers, pinpointing market opportunities CPG giants ignore and quickly adapting to changing consumer trends. Smaller brands aren’t encumbered by stagnant legacy systems and obsolete mindsets. Such adaptability makes money. Consumer demand has evolved from CPG leaders with a mass-market mindset to smaller disruptors who adapt to fragmented consumer tastes (e.g. local, organic, free-from, sustainable and keto vs. foods laden with sugar, salt and fat). To remain competitive, CPG leaders continue to acquire smaller brands (e.g. Kellogg bought RXBar for $600 million) or launch new product lines that address these new niche to stay relevant.
  • Posted on: 10/19/2018

    Is apparel manufacturing coming back to America?

    Nearshoring and reshoring apparel have recently been in style as a way to protect retail profitability and people. Amid the current politics of protectionism and consumer demand for products “Made in the USA,” reshoring is seen as a way to slowly reinvigorate U.S. manufacturing jobs, which decreased 29 percent since 2000, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. More apparel retailers are turning to nearshoring to:
    • Shorten the supply chain;
    • Reduce shipping costs;
    • Boost speed to market;
    • Counter rising raw material costs; and
    • Adapt to evolving consumer demand.
    American companies like Everlane, Theory and Shinola differentiate their brand by manufacturing some or all of their goods in the U.S. However, nearshoring isn't for every company. When deciding where to locate production, apparel brands must consider total manufacturing costs, such as inventory costs, and political, economic and ethical risks.
  • Posted on: 10/17/2018

    Eddie Lampert is the worst

    Yes. Lampert is the retail version of pharma CEO-turned-inmate Martin Shkreli. His decisions to ignore retail upheaval, and hedge his bets to guarantee he profits regardless of Sears' performance harmed his employees, investors and vendors.
  • Posted on: 10/12/2018

    Cannabis-infused drink and food makers are high on grocery opportunities

    Cannabis infusions will certainly drive grocery traffic within the next three to five years, especially in cannabis-friendly states like California and Colorado. Attitudes are changing, as consumers see the diverse therapeutic value of cannabidiol (CBD) for calmness (vs. the highs of compound THC). While smoking remains taboo, cannabis drinks are comparatively discreet, clean and socially acceptable, which will drive consumption. No doubt U.S. retailers will keep an eye on Wednesday's cannabis legalization in Canada (although edibles won't be legal until Fall 2019). Beyond regulations, vocal consumer demand and investor enthusiasm may change retailers' minds about this stigmatized sector as they see how this new drink category is poised to be popular and lucrative.
  • Posted on: 09/05/2018

    Nike campaign tests ‘all publicity is good publicity’ adage

    Nike knew this bold move would resonate among its target market. Millennials are the most diverse generation in U.S. history and nearly half of Gen Z belong to a minority, so race relations are relevant to them. Nike stands out by prioritizing purpose, which could harm short-term profits yet win long-term loyalty, as younger consumers actively seek out ethics and corporate social responsibility. That’s why the bigger risk for Nike would have been to remain silent amid political audacity. In this age of fear, consumers crave courage.
  • Posted on: 08/16/2018

    Gallup poll says consumers prefer to shop for their own groceries

    Three key success factors will boost these e-grocery figures over the medium term for retailers who address consumer needs: 1. Trust: Consumers want assurance that grocers will put as much attention and care into their grocery sections as shoppers currently do for themselves. No one wants a bruised apple, mushy banana, or fatty cut of meat. Retailers who consistently deliver quality selections accurately and on time will earn consumer confidence. 2. Refrigeration: Shelf-stable center store products are one thing. However, keeping salads from wilting, milk from spoiling, meat from going rancid, and ice cream from getting soupy is complex, requiring different temperatures throughout the entire shipping and handling process. Retailers need to consider how they will respect different products' different temperature requirements, especially since fresh, perishable foods are in high demand. 3. Delivery: Partnerships with Shipt, Ocado, and Instacart are giving grocers access to consumers' front door. If Amazon and Walmart are trying to take the extra step and put the groceries in your fridge, that's quite a (creepy? yet) compelling competitive edge for consumers seeking convenience and time savings. Changing consumption habits takes time. Consumer-centric strategy and strategic partnerships will distinguish e-grocery winners.
  • Posted on: 08/15/2018

    Kroger teams with Alibaba to sell private labels to half-a-billion Chinese consumers

    As the largest retail market (and the fastest growing e-commerce market) in the world, China represents a source of growth for American companies willing to invest in foreign expansion. This partnership gives Kroger local market expertise while lowering risk by collaborating with e-commerce powerhouse Alibaba. Kroger gains access to Chinese consumers to capitalize on their health and wellness lifestyle and sophisticated mobile shopping habits, while gaining data insights to fuel future retail efforts. Since natural and organic foods, nutritional supplements, and products "Made in the USA" are in demand in China, Kroger gains a competitive edge in a massive, booming market.
  • Posted on: 08/13/2018

    Hy-Vee opens fitness-focused grocery store concept

    Brilliant move. This strategy hits multiple hot health and wellness trends (natural, organic, nutritional supplements, fresh perimeter shopping, post-workout sports drinks). Beyond product benefits, this move delivers "people benefits" of convenience and integrated wellness options that make it simpler to live a healthy lifestyle. Consumers may also feel motivated to stay on track with their health goals and feel a sense of belonging among a fitness community, which can boost sales, word of mouth and loyalty.
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