2013 May Be a Make or Break Year for Some Long-Time Retailers

Best Buy, J.C. Penney, RadioShack, and Sears are among the best-known retailers that have faced tough times recently. Will 2013 be the year they regain their popularity — or the year when then decline even further? As today’s Wall Street Journal puts it: “For Four Retailers, Do or Die.”
WSJ reporters Ann Zimmerman and Dana Mattioli write that: “These unlucky retailers are going into the New Year with extra woes: slipping sales, questionable strategies, and tight finances — which is why they are the ones to watch, and not in a good way. Best Buy has been plagued by the retail phenomenon called ‘showrooming,’ where shoppers examine products in its stores but buy online through rivals. A quarter of shoppers who said they had showroomed had done so at Best Buy, according to a recent Harris Poll, so analysts will be watching to see if it can capture more of those sales on its own Web site. J.C. Penney has been trying to ditch its image as an old-fashioned department store where Middle America went seeking bargains. But its rapid and radical makeover has left it burning through cash and struggling to attract shoppers, leading to questions about how long the company can afford to stick to its new strategy. RadioShack’s bet on mobile phones and tablets has backfired. It has sold more of these low-margin devices but is making less money than it did retailing old standards like cameras and computers. Though it staved off a cash crunch earlier this year by suspending its dividend, mounting losses cloud its future. Sears Holdings’ sales and profits continue to slide. The 124-year-old department store chain has been shoring up its liquidity by selling itself off in pieces — but some of its remaining assets might be tough to unload when retailing is under pressure.”
Click the photo to read more about the prospects for these four retailers. And click HERE for a good video synopsis.

Photo by Getty Images

 

This entry was posted in Online Retailing, Part 1: Overview/Planning, 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, Video Clips (non-career) and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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