Whilst saving money in retail businesses is important, ultimately retail businesses survive by generating increased sales; from increasing market share; and in all cases from generating maximum profit from each sale. This workshop looks at ten areas across a variety of VM operations, and their integration with wider retail functions to deliver higher sales, increased margin, and higher efficiencies.
VM operations workshops explore developing best practice functions from space planning and product story merchandising to store layout, visual display and promotions delivery but essentially focus on the integration of these retail functions. Workshops allow cross functional team interaction, discussion, awareness, understanding, respect and become the catalyst for commercial collaboration.
Managing brand image and commercial sales in 3rd party stores requires strategy and planning in assortment structure, space, display, dynamic events and robust VM tolls & processes. The client relationship needs to balance brand image with pragmatic acceptance of clients commercial priorities through education & compliance.
Town centre regeneration is a burning topic economically and socially with the retail offer at its strategic heart. Retail locations are competing for traffic and to do so successfully need to offer the correct mix of product categories, retailer types and brand positioning to create a dynamic emotional proposition distinct from neighbouring alternatives.
Turning a store layout into a customer experience which becomes both emotional and ultimately commercial requires detailed insights into customer behaviour, through aisles, at end-caps, at service points and through the till payment process. Video analytics illuminates traffic patterns, engagement, attraction, and dwell conversions related to store initiatives.
All complacency in retail has been washed away by the deluge of the current depression, however a refreshing positive of the situation is a "return to selling" The reduction in option numbers and store capacity density is allowing visual merchandisers to create emotional theatre in stores showing off and celebrating a wider variety of product stories - categories, silhouettes, themes and hero product displays.
In many areas of our everyday lives we seek the expertise of others to keep ourselves healthy, to maximize our investments, to make us beautiful and attractive and to find the best holidays and leisure destinations.
Whilst we acknowledge some degree of personal knowledge in these areas the value of the “consultant” is that this level of expertise lays well beyond our own and as a result we are happy to pay for that advice and the benefits that come from it.
For maximum benefit ensure the retail workshops you receive are…
1. Personalised through pre-visits and discussions
2. Relevant through individual research by experts
3. Interactive between presenter and audience and within the audience itself
4. Concluded with feedback, recommendations and priority action plans
Many of us will remember the “wonder of workshops” in our corporate adolescence. In days gone by we were summoned to presentation rooms and talked at on subjects we were not generally … Continue reading →
Instant messaging, store operations and the blessing and curse of constant communication
For many retailers with multiple outlets, and any retailer with a wide store geography, international portfolio and a combination of direct and franchise operations, direct communication tools accessible via in-store tablets and mobile phones are a blessing of the highest order.
These software communication tools are being rapidly deployed and have many operational and social functions.
Is your retail brand ready to succeed in a complicated, customer orientated world?
Without doubt, life used to be easy for retailers. To echo the famous words directed to the general public “you’ve never had it so good” the equally valid claim to retail businesses was definitely “you’ve never had it so easy!”
In a world of low expectations, it was buying things that was generally difficult. The world was full of average shops selling average products, but with customer expectations low we … Continue reading →
Am I displaying with the correct option density? How to have your cake and eat it!
Some of the most obvious questions are often the hardest to answer, or to be more accurate it would seem, are the ones that no one wants to answer.
The repercussions of this “small question” are very great for a number of functions within a retail business and though ultimately the answer may prove favourable to the majority, if not all, it still remains an irony … Continue reading →
Far from remaining in the history of time, Fossil’s latest incarnation inhabits the modern world of customisation and personalisation, with new products, new services and a whole new store with a clear focus on the “his” & “hers.” An investment in individual identity.
Most noticeable in the latest concept is the introduction of the “Personalisation Shop” offering instant satisfaction on a range of services from accessories embossing, monograms, engraving, personal charms and the customisation of watches with colours across straps, casing materials and … Continue reading →
It was Les Wexner founder of the Limited group, a man responsible for the success of some of the most iconic of fashion retailers from Victoria’s Secret to Express, from Abercrombie & Fitch to Bath & Body Works and quite possibly the first retail guru, who said that “retail is detail”
He was right and anyone in retail doesn’t need to be a modern day guru to know that.
That detail begins with the buying and merchandising chain where getting detail right is essential … Continue reading →
Why can’t head office communicate to stores in one coordinated way?
An inbox audit of any store manager’s email system will reveal instantly how well, or not, communication to stores is organised, channelled, filtered and prioritised.
Common headaches apart from sheer volume of messages are repeated messages from different head office functions, or even the same function and person, to direct contradictions in instructions and apparently competing priorities for time and attention.
Selfridges opens its biggest ever department, Body Studio, encompassing everything that is exciting and inspirational about London’s leading department store.
Never the laggard Selfridges is ahead of the trend as its manoeuvres gracefully to gain a fitness foot hold in the fastest growing area of fashion – Athleisure. The department brings together an intimate experience, despite its many metres, catering for everything feminine from lingerie, nightwear and seasonal swimwear, through fitness, yoga and exercise to casual comfort wear.
It’s very easy for a retailer to go chasing in circles attempting to catch the evasive scraps of essential new data, insights and analysis blown into a constant ferment by the prevailing winds of new information. Throw into this cyclone complex omni-channel data, progressively pervasive loyalty programme insights, beacons pursuing the personalisation profile of every customer and we have nothing less than a hurricane force of facts at our out-stretched fingertips.
Important as these insights are, in many cases incremental opportunities to improve … Continue reading →
Stylish and socially sophisticated Max&Co still packs a huge punch of personality into every meticulously planned meter of its store experience.
A warm welcome from manicured mannequins with lipstick, lashes and a coy curiosity immediately alerts any casual customer that this lady of the more fashionable lanes offers a lifestyle proposition both feminine, fashionable and fun.
The store design from top to bottom communicates an individualistic tone of voice from the spindle legs of its fixtures and furniture, the lazy lamps that splash light … Continue reading →
Urban regeneration can sometimes be unemotional terminology for some of the most exciting enterprises across retail and leisure. Never more the case in the variety of schemes bringing vigour, life and energy to the revitalised heart of the Andalucian capital.
In response to the ever-changing commercial and industrial landscape Seville is now home to centres of social rebirth, magnets for a wide variety of its resident population and transient tourists. Within a kilometre of each other the old railway station no longer receives … Continue reading →
Inspiration often comes from the strangest sources at the most unexpected times as I recently experienced when listening to a quote from possible the world’s most quoted source of eternal wisdom, although definitely not one usually associated with retail even if it is the world’s second oldest profession.
The quote was from Confucius, and was the following, although I apologise in advance for any minor deviations from the original:
Italian cuisine has always travelled well, but its global reach and reputation has been taken to new levels of excellence by the Eataly concept, combining its prestigious packaged products and finest fresh fayre with a variety of eateries from formal restaurants, to pizzerias and casual coffee bars.
From New York to the New East it continues to evolve and engage.
Its latest incarnation comes home to Milan, to the heart of Italy and to its toughest test of quality and authenticity. However, the perpetual buzz … Continue reading →
Knowledge of traffic and conversion is essential to measure and maximise sales opportunities across stores, however the knowledge of traffic and conversion by category display within the store reveals the mysteries of the shopping experience and promises the riches of increased sales productivity for every gondola, wall and precious retail square metre.
What retail success boils down to is selling as much as possible to as many people as possible. In the context of any retail business this is very much in line … Continue reading →
For a retailer with a long heritage Hema packs a powerful contemporary punch as it speeds into the newly refurbished New Street Station in Birmingham. On the fast track to becoming a global brand Hema now has 5 UK stores, with 3 of these in high traffic transport hubs including Stansted airport.
In the same vein as the comparative propositions of Tiger and Ale Hop Hema strives to cream off the lucrative impulse sales from popular consumer categories through the development of an … Continue reading →
Planning your store layout for maximum profit illustrates yet again the importance of integration within a retail business, the bringing together of the commercial and the emotional, the marriage of the beauty and the beast.
On the one hand the store needs to be functional and based on sound commercial strategy and decision making whilst on the other hand it needs to be emotional to stimulate additional sales and profit.