Who’s the Real Boss of Shopping?

The answer to this question, which may or may not be surprising to you, is women (for several product categories). Despite the blurring of gender roles, this remains true.

As reported by Martin Armstrong for Statista:

“One way of judging would be by who controls the purse strings. As new data from the Statista Global Consumer Survey 2018 shows though, this answer would usually depend on the kind of purchases you’re talking about.”

“When asked in which categories they personally make the purchasing decisions, there were some clear splits between men and women. The largest gap was for daily consumer goods such as food and drink. 81 percent of women said they make the decisions in this area, compared to 65 percent of men – a difference of 16 percentage points. On the other end of the scale, men are apparently more often in the driving seat when it comes to buying a vehicle. In this category, 50 percent of women and 64 percent of men said they made the decision themselves.” 

“Note: 30 percent of respondents said they were either single/unmarried or divorced/widowed at the time of survey. The results are therefore not completely representative of relationship dynamics, but rather gender differences generally.”


Posted in Part 3: Targeting Customers and Gathering Information, Part 6: Merchandise Management and Pricing | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

H&M Is Now Using Data Analytics

Just a few years ago, H&M was charging along as a leading purveyor of “cheap chic.” In recent times, it has not done nearly as well. Hence, H&M is now using data analytics more actively than before.


Why and How H&M Is Now Using Data Analytics

As Saabira Chaudhuri reports for the Wall Street Journal:

“The world’s largest clothing brand is turning to artificial intelligence to win back shoppers, as it works to reverse one of the worst sales slumps in its history. Hennes & Mauritz AB’s H&M retail chain is ramping up its use of data to customize what it sells in individual stores, breaking with its longstanding practice of stocking stores around the globe with similar merchandise.”

“The 71-year-old fast-fashion chain is aiming to arrest a slump in same-store sales that has lasted 10 straight quarters as it faces problems bedeviling the industry: A spike in online shopping has led to fewer customers visiting stores, and digital startups are putting up fierce competition. H&M has repeatedly slashed prices to clear out $4 billion of unsold goods. And its shares are down 56% in the past three years.”

“H&M, like most retailers, relies on a team of designers to figure out what shoppers want to buy. Now, it’s using algorithms to analyze store receipts, returns, and loyalty-card data to better align supply and demand. With the goal of reducing markdowns. As a result, some stores have started carrying more fashion and fewer basics such as T-shirts and leggings.”

As the chart below shows, H&M is using data analytics to detect trends, stock stores, and set prices. Click the image for a larger version.

Why and How H&M Is Now Using Data Analytics

Posted in Global Retailing, Part 1: Overview/Planning, Part 2: Ownership, Strategy Mix, Online, Nontraditional, Part 6: Merchandise Management and Pricing, Part 7: Communicating with the Customer, Part 8: Putting It All Together | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Macy’s New Story

After a long period of weak results, Macy’s may finally be turning things around. And there is also Macy’s new Story.


Recent Results Are Positive

According to Paul LaMonica, writing for CNN Money:

“Don’t count out Macy’s yet. Digital sales are up. People are going to actual, physical Macy’s stores to shop. And tourists are flocking to Macy’s flagship store in New York. Macy’s is so confident in its business that it boosted its outlook for the year.”

“The retailer once again posted double-digit sales growth from digital sales, thanks in part to improvements the company has made to its Web site and app. Macy’s said that sales were healthy at physical stores for all its main brands as well, which include Bloomingdale’s and makeup and beauty chain Bluemercury — in addition to Macy’s. Overall sales rose 3.6% from last year, better than expected.”

“CEO Jeff Gennette said in the company’s earnings release that the solid results were proof that ‘the winning formula’ for Macy’s is ‘a healthy brick & mortar business, robust E-commerce, and a great mobile experience.'”


Macy’s New Story

To keep the momentum going, Macy will purchase Story. As the latter reports at its Web site:

“Set in a 2,000-square-foot store located in Manhattan’s 10th Ave. retail corridor, Story is a retail concept that takes the point of view of a magazine, changes like a gallery, and sells things like a store. That means every four to eight weeks, Story completely reinvents itself -from the design to the merchandise – with the goal of bringing to light a new theme, trend or issue.”

 Click the image to read a recent “story.”

Macy's New Story

Click here to read about the benefits to Macy’s of the Story acquisition.

Posted in Online Retailing, Part 1: Overview/Planning, Part 2: Ownership, Strategy Mix, Online, Nontraditional, Part 3: Targeting Customers and Gathering Information, Part 5: Managing a Retail Business, Part 6: Merchandise Management and Pricing, Part 7: Communicating with the Customer, Part 8: Putting It All Together | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tips for New Entrepreneurs

Interested in becoming an entrepreneur? If yes, then today’s post is for you. It includes tips for new entrepreneurs.

For more information, look at these prior posts: Observations from 234 Entrepreneurs! and Do You Have What It Takes to Be an Entrepreneur?


Infographic Tips for New Entrepreneurs

As Meredith Wood writes for Fundera:

“Being an entrepreneur is always challenging. But it can be especially difficult if you start building your business at a young age. Young entrepreneurs face unique hurdles. And these include creating a company with less work and life experience under their belt. If you’re a young entrepreneur, you may also struggle with being taken less seriously by older peers.”

“In addition, if you start creating a business at a younger age you’ve also likely had less time to build a robust financial life. One of the best ways to position yourself for success despite these challenges is to be proactive about developing and maintaining a strong financial strategy. To take control of your financial life as a young entrepreneur, get smart about implementing money tips into your life and your business strategy. Simple steps like finding a business credit card that works for you and tracking your purchasing will help you create the foundation you need to build a strong financial life. These simple but crucial financial tips will also give you the confidence you need to focus on building a successful business.”

Here is an infographic from Fundera.

Tips for New Entrepreneurs -- An Infographic


Posted in Career Useful Information, Careers in Retailing, Part 1: Overview/Planning, Part 2: Ownership, Strategy Mix, Online, Nontraditional, Part 5: Managing a Retail Business, Part 8: Putting It All Together | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Bonobos Showcases Diversity

At Bonobos, an online men’s clothier, the focus is on the following:

“Shopping for clothes is a pain. We’re here to make it painless, and maybe even fun. A Better Experience. Like most guys, we’re not big fans of shopping. That’s why we set out to build the best online shopping experience in the world, and we made it the core of what we do. We’re now the largest clothing brand ever built on the Web in the U.S.”

Bonobos Showcases Diversity


Bonobos Showcases Diversity

As part of its overall strategy, Bonobos is a big believer in diversity.

Consider this recent report by Adrianne Pasquarelli for Advertising Age. And then look at the ad below: 

“Bonobos has a few good men in its new campaign — actually, a lot of them. To show off that its pants cover 172 sizes and fits, the 11-year-old menswear brand is debuting a campaign featuring 172 men of varying shapes, sizes, ages and ethnicity in a 30-second TV spot. ‘However you fit, Bonobos fits you,’ reads text in the commercial, which will run in Austin and Chicago markets.”

“‘There’s a really interesting conversation to be had around the evolution of masculinity, and the power of diversity and inclusivity,’ says Micky Onvural, co-president of the brand, which was bought by Walmart last year for $310 million. The company has been exploring ‘how Bonobos as a brand could not just have an impact on the men that [it sells to] and how they see themselves, but have an impact on the conversation,’ she adds.”

“Onvural was Bonobos’ chief marketing officer before the Walmart purchase and is still handling the role’s responsibilities while the company searches for a new CMO. The campaign, which begins airing on Monday, is the brand’s second push from Observatory Marketing, formerly known as CAA, following ‘Role Models,’ which aired last fall.”

“Along with the TV spot, Bonobos will run radio, digital and social marketing as well as project video on buildings in both cities. The brand will also cull a 90-second digital video and a seven-minute mini-documentary out of interviews with its models.”


Posted in Online Retailing, Part 3: Targeting Customers and Gathering Information, Part 6: Merchandise Management and Pricing, Part 7: Communicating with the Customer, Social Media and Retailing | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

FierceRetail’s Weekly Roundup

Each week, FierceRetail presents its roundup of key retailing events.  FierceRetail is a well-rounded site with information on stores, digital, technology, and operations. In addition, it offers a resources section. 

FierceRetail's Weekly Roundup

Here are four recent stories from its retail roundup:

  • Nestle to sell Starbucks coffee — “Nestle will pay Starbucks $7.2 billion to market and sell Starbucks’ packaged coffees and teas. Nestle already has a share of the coffee business with its Nescafe and Nespresso brands and now will sell all packaged goods that Starbucks does not currently sell within its stores.” (CNN Money)
  • WatchBox uses AR to reduce returns — “Online luxury watch retailer WatchBox has launched an augmented reality feature in hopes of reducing the amount of returns. The company invested $200,000 in an AR feature on the app that allows consumers to see how watches will look on their wrists.” (WatchPro)
  • Instagram launches payments — “Instagram just added a native payment feature to its app that lets a consumer register a debit or credit card and a pin number as part of a profile. Once set up, the shopper will be able to purchase items without leaving Instagram for another Web site.(TechCrunch)
  • Express adds new sizes to stores — “Express introduces extended sizing for both men’s and women’s clothing. While the brand has offered more size options online for some time, the company wants to support more consumers by meeting their needs and give them more options when it comes to fashion in the physical store. (PR Newswire)


Posted in Part 1: Overview/Planning, Part 2: Ownership, Strategy Mix, Online, Nontraditional, Part 6: Merchandise Management and Pricing, Part 7: Communicating with the Customer, Part 8: Putting It All Together | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Data Analytics Can Enhance Customer Experiences

We know that using data analytics can enhance customer experiences. And in a big way. Thus, this post takes a marketing client perspective of analytics.

For a further look at data analytics, visit these posts:


How Using Data Analytics Can Enhance Customer Experiences

Although analytics are vital, many firms still behind. As research show.

According to eMarketer:

“To upgrade their customer experiences, firms must take a hard look at revamping their data analytics. And they can do this by looking at an Econsultancy and Adobe survey of client-side marketers worldwide. In that survey, 65% of respondents cited improving their data analysis as a very important factor in better customer experience. That was the most popular answer for the second year in a row. Up from a 63% response rate in 2017.”

“According to Adam Kleinberg, the CEO of ad agency Traction, providing a reputable digital experience for customers is important. Why? Because it is one of the main ways that brands differentiate themselves from competitors. ‘To improve your customer experience, you need to understand the customer journey in relation to your brand. And then you must identify moments of friction to fix. Or moments of delight to build upon. In particular, analyzing data is essential to identify these insights. Then, they can become business-building opportunities.’ Kleinberg said.”

Take a look at the chart to learn more. What do YOU recommend for firms to better apply data analytics to customer experiences?
Data Analytics Can Enhance Customer Experiences

Posted in Part 3: Targeting Customers and Gathering Information, Part 7: Communicating with the Customer, Part 8: Putting It All Together, Technology in Retailing | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment