Like other merchants gearing up for the holidays, New Years Day store closing and opening hours is promoting “monster sales.” But with the floodwaters gone and the Astros crowned as baseball’s world champions, McIngvale’s community spirit appears to have positioned his chain as more than a brand, destination or store. Beyond capturing market share, Gallery Furniture might have an advantage in customer sentiment.
Best Buy is buzzing again
Community involvement isn’t the only way retailers can regain strength. National electronics chain Best Buy has ridden a roller coaster over the past two decades: In 2004 it was recognized by Forbes magazine as “Company of the season.” By 2012 it was dismissed being a real-world showroom for cheaper internet retailers. In August 2017, though, its stock price hit an all-time high.
As Amazon grew, Best Buy defended itself, transforming into a top 10 retailer in sales by matching competitors’ prices and purchasing personal services like Geek Squad. The company also trained workers to help customers understand technology: Product descriptions can list a camera’s functions, but an experienced employee can explain the way it works with lenses, editing software or with other devices. That allows the company to take advantage of the ever-increasing quantity of tech-connected products in smart homes, from Nest thermostats to 4K TVs – which require more instruction to setup and operate than their analog predecessors.
In the face of online competition, brick-and-mortar retailers must give consumers unique in-store experiences that build emotional connections with shoppers. Black Friday promos on toasters or iPads won’t make the grade. They need to provide heartfelt feelings like surprise, delight and excitement – and actual help and useful advice. Shopping on a couch via a mobile app is efficient, but a store could be magical and memory-making.
WHEN AMERICA’S RETAIL bosses gathered in New York earlier this year for that annual shindig of their trade association, the National Retail Federation, there is much talk about new technology to enhance the industry’s prospects, from sensors that read consumers’ facial expressions to machine-learning software that can optimise prices. The ghost at the banquet was the organization that gave no presentations but made its presence felt everywhere: Amazon.
Traditional retailing has had a tough time lately. Traffic in shopping centres in Europe’s biggest markets continues to be declining. In The United States, which has about five times as much space in Memorial Day store hours per person as Britain, the discomfort is acute. Chains that were faltering even before Amazon’s ascent are actually in even deeper trouble. Macy’s, a department shop, a year ago said it would close 100 of their 728 shops. Fung Global Retail & Technology, a consultancy, expects nearly ten thousand stores in the united states to seal this season, about 50% greater than at the height in the financial crisis in 2008. And there will be more to come.
Shops employed to compete by offering a mix of selection, price, service and convenience. E-commerce’s most apparent edge is within selection and convenience. Even biggest store cannot hold as many items as Amazon can provide. Walmart conquered America by saving consumers money; Amazon does exactly the same by saving them time. Shops still provide immediacy as well as a personal experience. But though getting attentive service at Gucci may be fun, waiting to cover in the supermarket is not.
E-commerce firms will also be competing on new kinds of service and pricing. An internet site knows much more about you than any shop assistant can, enabling it to offer personalised recommendations straight away. Online, a shopper can easily compare costs between retailers. More intriguingly, merchants can rapidly move prices down or up, using bots to complement competitors’ offerings. Eventually this pricing may become more personalised. Alibaba and JD already use their troves of web data to provide discounts on particular products to some of their customers.
All this has meant that consumers are now purchasing a wider range of Veterans Day store hours. The shift has become most dramatic in America, the place to find both a relentlessly disruptive e-commerce giant along with a herd of entrenched retailers (which China lacks). Consumers still buy certain types of goods in shops, like food and building equipment. But many shops have zhoqce no choice but to adhere to consumers online, putting together their very own e-commerce businesses because they maintain their bricks-and-mortar ones. For the short term, this only exacerbates their problems. Building an e-commerce business on top of a traditional the initial one is costly; firms must create websites and ship products to individual consumers, rather than to stores in large quantities.