retail

US Retailers Are Ready to Spring Forward

Posted by Dale Buss on March 6, 2015 05:05 PM

JCPenney spring 2015

Mainstream American retailers finally seem to be creeping back into growth mode after a rough couple of years and a very difficult period stretching back to the beginning of the Great Recession in 2008.

There remain storm clouds aplenty for bricks-and-mortar store brands, and some challenges for just about every major retailer.

But the latest quarterly sales and earnings reports have confirmed that chains including Kohl's, JCPenney and Old Navy have joined a recent chorus of good news from others such as Walmart and Target about current sales trends and short-term expectations.Continue reading...

bc q&a

Brand News: Pebble x Kickstarter, Barclays x Twitter, Starwood x Uber

Posted by Dale Buss on February 25, 2015 09:20 AM

TOP STORIES

Pebble sets record for Kickstarter with latest smartwatch.

Barclays becomes first UK bank to allow payments by Twitter and expands brand publishing.

Buick and Lexus top Consumer Reports annual car brand ranking.

Mondelez sells Mobile Futures-developed Betabox agency to Gary Vaynerchuk's Vayner Media.

Starwood taps Uber for preferred guest loyalty rewards program.Continue reading...

retail

Walmart Sinks in American Customer Satisfaction Index

Posted by Dale Buss on February 18, 2015 04:52 PM

Walmart everyday low price store

US consumers are less and less enamored of brick-and-mortar physical retailers but gaining satisfaction with online retailers such as Amazon, according to the new retail report by the American Customer Satisfaction Index.

The news from the survey of 70,000 US customers is especially bad for Walmart, which was named America's "most-hated" retail brand in the report, and a handful of other stalwart traditional-retail brands. But it's especially good for Nordstrom.

The researchers noted that "with the exception of internet retail, all retail categories show weakening or flat customer satisfaction" for its latest retail temperature check. Factors cited include higher prices, especially by discounters, while department stores and specialty retailers were relatively unscathed.Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: Band Aid 30, Samsung, Nokia and more

Posted by Dale Buss on November 18, 2014 09:44 AM

TOP STORIES

Nokia returns to consumer market with launch of N1 Android tablet.

Samsung cuts number of smartphone models, launches first UK Christmas ad campaign ahead of Oculus Rift/Gear VR holiday launch.

Unicef UK fights Ebola with footballers as Band Aid 30 single (feat. Bono, One Direction, Chris Martin and more) becomes fastest-selling UK single of 2014.

Toyota plans 12 U.S. hydrogen stations to support Mirai fuel-cell vehicle, while Honda delays launch of its fuel-cell car to cope with air bag safety.

Sony targets entertainment revenueas it re-evaluates free music streaming in wake of Taylor Swift's boycott of Spotify, which just signed a major deal with Uber.Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: JetBlue, Alibaba, Tide and more

Posted by Dale Buss on November 10, 2014 09:35 AM

TOP STORIES

JetBlue changes livery in honor of Veterans Day.

Alibaba prepares for 11/11 Singles Day e-commerce bonanza.

Honda aims to prioritize quality over sales targets in wake of air bag crisis.

P&G sees Tide Pods hit anew in poison control report finding child a day sent to hospital by pod ingestion.

Oreo to release churro cookie and PepsiCo tests Doritos-flavored Mountain Dew and Pizza Hut plans "Flavor of Now" brand overhaul with craft pizza including curry-flavored crust.Continue reading...

black friday

Black Friday Reboot: Kohl's Extols App, Earlier Thanksgiving Hours

Posted by Dale Buss on October 30, 2014 01:28 PM

In the 90s, Kohl's challenged JCPenney, Sears and other former kings of retail with what then was a revolutionary formula: name brands, affordable prices, heavy promotion and shopper convenience. Kohl's leveraged this formula to nationwide expansion in the U.S. and knocked its rivals out of the park.

A couple of decades later, its momentum slowed, CEO Kevin Mansell and Chief Customer Officer Michelle Gass are promising to lead the king of mid-market apparel retailing out of its long wilderness.

Admitting that its stores "haven't been the most inspiring," Mansell revealed a "complete change in the way we run our business," including a new look and feel, a refreshed inventory that's now customized by store (not region), more big-name brands, and the promise of "surprise" and delight in stores under the banner "Find Your Yes."  

And then there's its Thanksgiving/Black Friday plans.Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: Apple's Cook Comes Out, Microsoft Band and more

Posted by Dale Buss on October 30, 2014 09:12 AM

TOP STORIES

Apple CEO Tim Cook says he's "proud to be gay" in Bloomberg Businessweek public coming out essay following LGBT rights speech (above) as his company looks to sell iPhone in Iran while CurrentC, rival mobile-payment system to Apple Pay, is hacked.

Microsoft unveils Microsoft Band fitness wearable as it finishes round of previously announced layoffs.

Burger King clears antitrust hurdle with Tim Hortons deal.

Kohl's launches badly needed makeover and details Thanksgiving opening plan.

SodaStream shifts toward carbonated water and plans to close controversial West Bank factory.Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: Lowe's Robot, Alibaba-Apple, Twitter and more

Posted by Dale Buss on October 28, 2014 09:10 AM

TOP STORIES

Alibaba eyes payments tie-up with Apple (and rebrands travel unit) as Apple sees 1 million+ Apple Pay accounts activated in first 72 hours, and sees Mac sales gains.

Lowe's tests retail-ready, $50K multilingual robot at Orchard Supply Hardware store.

Tesla unveils lease discount amid softness.

Twitter sees user engagement slow down.

YouTube considers paid subscription, ad-free business model as music service looms.Continue reading...

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