Wal-Mart Brings Mexican Experience North of the Border
By George Anderson
Wal-Mart, as a report by The Wall Street Journal’s Ann Zimmerman points out, has been the largest retailer in Mexico for five years.
With more Mexicans moving into the U.S., Wal-Mart is taking some of the lessons learned at its stores in that country and putting them into practice at stores serving recent immigrants as well as second and third generation Mexican-Americans who call America home.
Among the lessons learned in Mexico, said Celia Clancy, Wal-Mart’s general merchandise manager for women’s and children’s apparel, is that stores in that country devote more space to baby and children’s clothing than is normally designated in U.S. stores.
Style is also very important and Ms. Clancy is working with Wal-Mart de Mexico to bring clothing to U.S. stores that better reflect consumers’ fashion sense.
The reason for working with her Mexican colleagues is simple, said Ms. Clancy. “They do a better job in women’s apparel, serving a higher level of fashion,” she said.
Recent research shows Ms. Clancy and the rest of Wal-Mart have been largely successful in meeting the needs of Mexicans and other consumer groups with a Latino heritage.
A telephone survey of 500 Hispanic households conducted by the research firm NOP World found 36 percent chose Wal-Mart as their favorite store. (Target and Sears were tied for second with four percent.)
As to what factors are most important when deciding where to shop, respondents said, low prices (77 percent), convenient location (72 percent) and a wide range of merchandise (71 percent) were at the top of their lists.
Other factors deemed important were employees who spoke Spanish (54 percent), signage in Spanish (47 percent) and products relevant to Hispanic consumers (52 percent). Consumers in the study also said a wide range of payment options (47 percent) were important.
Moderator’s Comment: What do you see Wal-Mart and/or other retailers doing right when it comes to catering to the varied groups under the Hispanic demographic
umbrella? Where are the biggest opportunities for improvement? –
George Anderson – Moderator
- Retailer broadens Hispanic offerings – The Wall Street Journal/Arkansas
- Hispanic Americans Choose Wal-Mart as Favorite Store According to NOP World Study –