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Scott Norris

Channel Development Manager
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  • Posted on: 09/17/2021

    Will Macy’s be thankful it brought back its parade this year?

    I walked the Rosedale Mall (Twin Cities) location this weekend and was gobsmacked by how threadbare the shelves were. It seriously looked like they'd had a going-out-of-business sale and somehow I snuck into the boarded-up building.
  • Posted on: 09/14/2021

    Will gym equipment showrooms pump up Hy-Vee’s supermarket sales?

    From a Twin Cities' perspective, this sounds like the ghost of Sid Applebaum wandered down I-35 and possessed another retailer to build his vision of the Hypermart. Sid managed to do it in the late 1980s with several Holiday Plus locations here (imagine a Meijer, ringed on the inside by an inward-facing strip mall), but of course it couldn't hold together.
  • Posted on: 08/30/2021

    Can IKEA’s store layout still amaze without a maze?

    Likewise, I've never had a problem with the layout - I look forward to new discoveries around every bend, and when I need to focus on just a few items, I know the "cheat codes" to the store. My issues have been persistently on checkout staffing, where wait times can easily stretch beyond a half-hour on weekends, or during back-to-school and holiday shopping periods, and on in-stock availability, which was always a nagging problem in the Before Times but has devastated the store in the During Times. Staffing up and using scan-and-go technology can help the former; moving more global production to North America can help the latter.
  • Posted on: 08/10/2021

    Will voice shopping ever take off without screens?

    "Siri, place an order for my usual at Parkway Pizza, and let them know when I'm about to arrive to pick it up." That's about as far as I want this technology to go.
  • Posted on: 08/02/2021

    Dollar General tests combo DG Market/pOpshelf format

    I'm sure someone at Target HQ will watch these hybrid locations closely; if any show success, they would be an inviting destination to drop a "mini" Target into. (Where's the best place to site a CVS? Kitty-corner from Walgreens, of course....)
  • Posted on: 07/27/2021

    Will ‘sound commerce’ make some noise?

    Your comment about hearing the instruments in action makes me wonder if the RIAA is going to want a piece of this, since Decifrei is using an artist's performance to facilitate a sale? Granted, the Spotify model would suggest an artist will only get a penny off a guitar's sale, but these folks might be wading into an alligator-infested swamp.
  • Posted on: 07/26/2021

    Macy’s should have stayed local

    The Bon Marche agglomeration used the same back-office and private label consolidation logic, but retained its local marks such as Herberger's and Carson Pirie Scott -- keeping a veneer of regionalization but in the end, as Gary says, blah. There is some organizational and geographic threshold (40 stores? 125 stores? 4 states? 7 states?) beyond which the corporate hive mind crushes any effective regionalization. Firing six more cost accountants, or buying another 20,000 sweaters in a lot, as a result of "centralization" just doesn't make a lot of difference to a national retailer. But it could lose the loyalty of a metro area. As we Gen Xers say here in the Twin Cities, "I want my Dayton's back!"
  • Posted on: 07/22/2021

    Should retailers reconsider bringing their HQ staff back to work?

    Given recent court rulings saying mandatory vaccination policies are acceptable, I can't see how insurers will permit companies to concentrate large groups at HQ facilities without proof of vaccination. If "every COVID-19 death is now preventable," then by extension any harm caused will have some degree of liability for the employer/building manager. Frankly, I'm amazed the lawyers haven't been all over this already.
  • Posted on: 07/15/2021

    What does it take to successfully rent customers on social commerce platforms?

    Brands don't own the customer relationship when selling through other merchants' brick-and-mortar stores, either - we're talking about a situation that is many hundreds of years old.
  • Posted on: 07/02/2021

    Has TikTok become the most direct marketing path to Gen Z?

    I'm waiting for GSTV+, as Colbert predicted would be where Conan O'Brien has his next big show in the 2030s....
  • Posted on: 06/29/2021

    Will baristas crack under Starbucks’ mobile ordering pressure?

    They're already on it - I was exhibiting at an office products trade show in 2019 across the aisle from a Starbucks booth where they were demonstrating an all-in-one machine for corporate canteens. Pop in a clover capsule, punch in your selection, and you got a very respectable espresso drink with the mocha and foam. Sure, the machine was the size of a refrigerator on its side and cost over $10,000 - but it showed that the automation efforts for in-store use were also being spun out to enlarge the number of venues where the company's products could be enjoyed. I expect we'll be seeing robot Starbucks stands very soon.
  • Posted on: 06/23/2021

    Is ‘Buy Local’ fatigue setting in?

    Sliding the Twin Cities' refrain of "I want my Dayton's back!" right in here....
  • Posted on: 06/18/2021

    Will Americans invite Best Buy into their backyards?

    DeAnn makes a good point. If we've accepted buying grilling equipment at Home Depot, why wouldn't we accept it at Best Buy? The newer ones with app-enabled sensors should be seen in the context of a home network.
  • Posted on: 06/16/2021

    Will Target hit the bullseye or miss with its store remodeling plan?

    T1 is just a few blocks from my house - containers with construction supplies are lined up in the outer lot for this summer's work, and the dust has barely settled on the e-commerce tweaks they installed last year! Their commitment to continuous updates keeps the experience fresh and my mind alert to new discoveries each time I walk in the door.
  • Posted on: 06/15/2021

    How can retailers best navigate supply chain turbulence?

    We're running out of paper, tagboard, and corrugated cardboard too - between the whipsaws of cleaning supplies/hygiene shortages, explosive growth in packaging needed for online shipments, and the climate-and-COVID-19-induced timber shortages, combined with the intentional closing of paper mills in the Before Times to constrict supply and raise prices. That's all a North American problem, and it won't resolve quickly; trees only grow so fast and the paper oligopoly isn't going to start building new capacity.
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