This will definitely be interesting -- it will be difficult to be a complete shop with 35,000 square feet of space. Will Amazon focus on selling their private label lines they have been building for a while? Who knows? As mentioned above, it is extremely difficult to carve out new business from an already crowded field - look at Tesco and Lidl for examples. While I thought Whole Foods was purchased to be the lab, the assortment is not for all and there are not enough stores accessible to the general public unless you live in a large city.
I agree with you Ben-- this format wouldn't play in Paducah. J.C. Penney would have to tailor their stores to demographic they serve with bits and pieces of the new idea, but as others have stated, this is only window dressing. J.C. Penney needs to figure out what they want to be in regards to their core business.
Lead by example, others will follow. If this is the policy set within the company, it applies to all. As noted in the article, this is not the first time this has happened in a Fortune 500 company -- it pretty much erases all the good that leader has accomplished. He, as others in the past, will be remembered for that incident and not for the years of hard work to turn around a company.
I believe I saw CBDs in foods as one of last year's trend. I don't know how much these options will be given space in regular Kroger or H-E-B stores. Most of these would be found in specialty POGs in a limited amount of stores.
All the suggestions above are very good, but I truly believe it starts at the top and trickles down to the stores. Corp merchants, buyers, category managers and the like should make themselves available to do store visits. Unfortunately, too many think an email or a Powerpoint will explain expectations. I am a big believer that you need to inspect what you expect from store operations. Putting a face to what you expect speaks volumes and ensures better execution of corporate objectives.
While I am all for technology, I still have issues with the privacy aspect of Alexa.
I definitely would not like Alexa devices listening to my children or conversations with my wife and then getting emails or recommendations on items or services from Amazon learned from family conversations. If there was a more clear delineation of policy concerning conversations heard on Alexa devices (or any VA peripherals) maybe there would be a faster acceptance?
I agree with Mark. While this seems like a more viable option for a 50,000 square-foot store, what is the ROI looking at the cost of the cart (we are looking at 200+ carts per store) and the maintenance of the carts (much of the current cost of cart replacement comes from replacing carts that have walked out of the parking lot or have been used as BBQ grills, I kid you not.) The loss prevention factor does not get reduced -- all the current issues (theft, etc.) would still be present if a retailer decided to go this route. I think there would be a limited amount of retailers that could use this technology but it is admirable as an alternative to the Amazon Just Walk Out tech.
Andrew, you are right on the money. I remember some years back reading an article of a foreign chain (non-U.S.) that was testing a scan unit where all products had RFID tags and all you had to do was to put the entire basket in the scan chamber and the system would scan each item and come up with a total for the basket. I thought that was pretty cool technology but then I never heard anything again about it. There is a labor component to consider, RFID adoption by vendors, and tech investment (both hardware and software). RFID is still a viable option but how long until there is sufficient traction for it to make a noticeable difference?
By the way, most self-checkouts I have seen have a overseer that has a screen where they can see all the terminals at the same time. I am guessing that this was something the store at which you did self-checkout did not have? If that is the case, that might explain why several chains have removed self-checkout all together.
Real-life role-playing brings people out of their shells - especially those that are being trained in sales positions. I don't know about using VR to fire people, it reminds of the scene in movie Up in the Air where they were firing people via Skype -- very personal.
I believe this really got elevated with the customer opening a tub of Blue Bell Ice Cream in Texas, licking it, and putting it back on the shelf, some months back. Lots of copycats after that -- who can post the better vid online so all can see?
I have a big issue with tampering with the food supply. Anyone doing it, along with the people discussed in the article should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. No examples -- make it the rule.
While I see Jeff's perspective on Disney possibly jumping the shark on this collaboration, there are many cities that are not big enough to have a Disney store nearby, where this could work in a Target store. As noted by many posts, the execution will measure the success of whether this is value added to bring customers (with kids) into a Target store.