retail experience

Brand Experience Brief: The Store

(This is the first installment of “brand experience briefs” — insights from my audits of new retail and restaurant concepts.)

What: the store

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Shouldn't We Make Place Special?

Last week, during the NRF Big Show, there was a lot of talk about how to change retail to be successful in today's world. I spent a lot of time with Bob Phibbs and Marge Laney walking the floor and talking about what we were seeing throughout the show.

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Radical Continuity: What Any Retailer Can Learn from Nordstrom

I’m coming to believe every good is a convenience good. A recent New York Times article reported that Nordstrom has integrated their in-store inventory with their online supply, meaning that anyone can get access to the entire inventory from any “location” — a physical store or online. They also report that Nordstrom’s management believes that this “innovation” has helped change their same store sales from a “negative growth” (don’t you love that term!) of 11.9% to a positive growth of 9%.

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No Pictures Please

I was reminded of this issue by C.B. Whittemore's post on our recent retail walkabout at Levi's Customer Retail Experience. During our visit to the Levi's store, C.B. asked about taking a picture of their new Curves display and we were told that we couldn't take photos in the store.

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Mirror Universe

Those of you who are Star Trek fans would have felt right at home with me the other day. I went to check out the new Microsoft store which just opened at Fashion Valley mall here in San Diego because I wanted to do a compare/contrast to the Apple store in the same mall. My fellow fans would have felt at home in the Microsoft store not because it was a cool look at the future of culture and technology, but rather because it seemed to be the Mirror Universe.

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Customers Who Return Products – Not as Bad as We Thought?

There’s been lots written about customers who deserve to be fired. “Bad” customers call customer service constantly, return products willy-nilly, and otherwise misuse the gifts that corporations bestow on them with their products and services.

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Glasses, Gloves Simulate Geriatric Impairments

Wall Street Journal writes about a sensitivity training that puts marketers in the old peoples' shoes, literally: "Before walking into a Walgreens drugstore here, Todd Vang [a Walgreens VP] donned glasses that blurred his vision, slipped un-popped popcorn into his shoes and adjusted tape that bound his thumbs to his palms."

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Transformation Interrupted

According to market research firm Hartman Group, consumer loyalty is shifting -- from products and brands, to the experiences offered by retailers -- in a radical transformation that started before the recession.

I think the change is much bigger than that.

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Rethinking the Mall - Allison Arieff Blog -

If you haven’t seen this piece by Allison Arieff and you're in the mall business, you should certainly be taking a look. Many of the things we’ve been talking about for years are things that people are just now exploring. The key take away is that the business model of the big mall needs to change, both from a back-end and a front end.

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Toys 'R' Us Expanding Kids Convenience Concept - Retail News.

by: David Polinchock

An interesting debate over at Retail Wire about this attempt by Toys R Us to increase the visitations by shoppers, who in this economy, may be cutting back on their toy purchases. Comments are mixed, with some people supporting the brand extensions and other people concerned that they are moving into low margin territories that are well covered by other retailers.

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