MissGuided: Heat Seeking Fashion

Born and bred online, young fashion retailer Missguided is now cutting its terrestrial teeth as it continues to roll out its physical flagship stores to major shopping centres in the UK.

Full of attitude, high on fashion and riding a dynamic rollercoaster the task in hand was always to translate this successful e-commerce formula into real stores considering their limitations of space, product availabilities and operational restrictions.

 

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In reality the stores do exude all the brand energy and then some, with a bright … Continue reading

Creating a collaborative “Mind-set” to change retail locations

Who’s the real competitor? Who’s the real enemy?

The massive changes that have swept across this land and others, the decimation of high streets,  town centres and the taking away of the retail heart of communities, though tragic and physically real are the result of a shift in mind-set. The mind-set and shopping patterns of the customer.

 

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And whilst there are a range of practical measures that must be taken physically on the ground and through legislation to create a viable landscape to rebuild … Continue reading

5th Joy of a Retail Spring – Profit from Queue Management

An effective and efficient queuing strategy has many benefits from minimising abandonment, increasing loss prevention, stimulating incremental impulse sales, loyalty building and customer service engagement.

 

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Failure to control and maximise the queuing opportunities means a retailer will never find that “sweet spot” of happy customers willing to queue and engage whilst delivering additional impulse sales

  • what is the “sweat spot” for queue waiting time linked to impulse sales?
  • how do I minimise abandonment yet expose impulse product?
  • what should the relationship be between service time … Continue reading

Retail Planning Workshops: Where to begin with your town?

Managing a single retail chain is complicated enough however when it comes to retail locations, town centres, shopping centres, retail and leisure destinations then simply the number of stakeholders and agendas involved can create an insurmountable complexity making the whole decision process impossible, never mind the delivery itself.

 

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So if you’re in a quandary as to how to move forwards with a coordinated and workable retail strategy for your location then how to begin?

One thing is for sure, effective change cannot be imposed … Continue reading

4th Joy of a Retail Spring – Maximising category performance

The performance of any department or category is the result of the assortment itself and the delivery in store – its location, visibility, display, service, visual communication and many other touch-points.

The key to maximise the performance of any category is to understand the product, define its benefits, and then communicate these visually to the customer in a way that is compelling and attractive.

 

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Failure to understand how each part of the store delivery either helps or hinders the sales performance of each department and … Continue reading

Sitting Pretty: John Lewis gets Materialistic

Sitting Pretty on the crest of the omni-channel retail wave John Lewis continues to be a master at combining the strengths of the past with the opportunities of the future.

 

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Sometimes exemplified on a substantial scale as in the mammoth overhaul of its operational structure for cross-channel availability and delivery, sometimes seen through delicate detailing as in its stunningly simple wireless headphone windows, it seems this most traditional of brands always has a new idea or two up its crisply creased sleeves.

 

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Retail Locations Traffic Drivers: Trust, Friendship & Leadership

Traffic is the only thing that matters when it comes to creating successful and profitable retail destinations. It is the lifeblood that pumps money into the local community, creates vibrancy and confidence and attracts new and successful additional retailers to tempt yet more visitors into what rapidly becomes a positive traffic snowball.

 

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This traffic does not happen by chance or by magic but is a result of a retail destination working very hard to deliver 3 essential attributes. Those 3 attributes can be … Continue reading

3rd Joy of a Retail Spring – How much product in my stores?

Space planning & visual merchandising are the two cornerstones on which an attractive and commercial store are built

At the heart of this is the eternal question – “How much product should I put in my store?”

 

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Get space planning wrong, allocate product incorrectly or deliver visual merchandising operations inefficiently and a store will never attain its potential sales productivity.

Marrying the “beauty and the beast” of the assortment comes down to an absolute certainty and consistency within a business on a few key questions:

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Accessible Expertise: The Independent Retailer Support Kit

Being an independent retailer does not mean you have to be inefficient, unattractive,
and uncompetitive.

 

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In fact in the fight for retail traffic between competing town centres the role of independents is more critical than ever in creating distinct flavour and personality. When independent retailers escape the cloak of consumer invisibility and exchange it for the colourful and attractive garb of local destination retailers then shopping venues truly begin to attract attention, command respect and pull in the customer pounds that they so … Continue reading

From Independent Store to Local Destination Powerhouse!

Sometimes having your cake and eating it seems to be one of the few things that the retail customer can actually succeed in doing as they stroll the lengths and breadths of Britain’s struggling high streets. There are truly some inspiring and inventive concepts in the world of coffee shops and eateries or at the very least convenience and comfort.

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However culinary creativity is not enough to satisfy the customer appetite for quality, professional retail stores yet avoiding the predictable parades of “the same old … Continue reading

2nd Joy of a Retail Spring – What do my store staff really do?

As retail stores become more remote from the head office of the business, through more diverse and dispersed portfolios, it becomes more and more difficult to know what operations the store teams are performing, how frequently they are performing them, and to what standards.

 

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This understanding is ironically more important than ever as stores serve and survive in a wider variety of contexts, graded and segmented in a growing number of ways, delivering more focused assortments to more different people in a retail world that … Continue reading

Home Cooking: IKEA’s Eating Evolution

It is not many yellow and blue moons ago that the food proposition at IKEA revolved around the manifestation of meatballs, supported stoically by sausages in rolls and competitively priced ice-cream cones with a choice of 3 syrups.

 

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Whilst these destination delights are fully preserved for both loyal patrons and new generations to discover, the market leading home retailer is evolving the variety of its culinary concepts to satisfy the voracious appetites of its customers’ demands whilst growing the already healthy size of … Continue reading

1st Joy of a Retail Spring – Understanding customer behaviour

1st Joy of a Retail Spring – Understanding Customer Behaviour

Make it your new year’s resolution to understand how your customer behaves inside your stores. In many ways having got them into your store you’ve done the hard part, and everything they do, and everything they buy now, is a bonus that cannot be ignored.

 

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The key is understanding how your customer reacts to your store, your product display, your layout, your service and everything else that can convert a sale.

Understand what is … Continue reading

Tim Radley at the “Placemaking Strategy Conference 2017″

The “Retail Strategy Planning & Physical Store Delivery” Workshop.

Tim Radley, CEO of VM-Unleashed! will be speaking and addressing specific retail planning problems and questions at the…
“Placemaking Strategy Conference 2017″
Nottingham Conference Centre. March 22nd. 

 

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For placemaking managers, city councillors, BID Directors, town planners and all those responsible for the regeneration of town centres & high streets - the simple truth of a successful and thriving retail destination is that you need the right assortment of shops and you need each … Continue reading

“The joys of a retail Spring!” – Essential Retail Insights

And now 2017 is well & truly upon us.

 

We bring to you…”The Joys of a retail Spring”
A timely and seasonal summary of retail know-how,  a dozen essential insights to sow the seeds of success in the year ahead.

 

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Coming soon…

 

Week-by-week over the coming months, we’ll bring to you a dozen of the very best ways to understand your retail business in a more detailed and enlightened way, and explain how this knowledge can be galvanised and developed into increased efficiencies … Continue reading

Toms “One-for-One” Love: Fashionable Philanthropy

Invention may be born from necessity but inspiration and originality comes from the addition of a commercial heart. In the rarefied atmosphere of true originality there are few names to pollute the pure air of brands such as Toms selling products to improve the world with every purchase.

 

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Its new stores are not only presenting a collection of clothing, footwear and accessories, or even the newly introduced coffee shop corners, but an ongoing story of philanthropy where every ring of the cash register … Continue reading

Packing the Hackett Punch: Attending to Vending Detail

Value is not a reality of price alone but the perception of benefit over price. Perception in itself can be the clear communication of reality or the addition of emotional attributes that ultimately constitute brand value.

 

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For a retailer like Hackett in a competitive swell of quality menswear brands using every available tool to enhance the value of the brand heritage, leveraging every luxury thread to add value and quality, working with every breath of quiet customer care is an essential to converting … Continue reading

Hunter Gatherer: More than Just a Rainy Day

A perennial problem for any noteworthy brand with a reputation built on an icon is the development of a wider commercial proposition away from the sanctuary of its established safe-haven.

 

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Hunter rules the rainy roost for premium Wellington boot buyers and is currently circumnavigating the choppy waters of expansion developing an assortment for the wider world of inclement conditions, encompassing everything from jackets and jumpers to a full range of rugged and resilient rainwear.

Its new store concept, as illustrated by London’s Regent … Continue reading

On the Twelfth Day of Christmas…Attain Retail Best Practice

“The 12 Gifts of Retail Christmas” for a Happy New Year

On the twelfth day of Christmas VM-Unleashed gave to me…
No.12 “The Quickest Ways to turn my Average Business into a Best Practice Retailer!”

 

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Retail Sense & Sensibility!” analytics into answers into actions

 

Retail in many ways is the most perplexing of industries as whilst it is built on quantifiable parameters and defined quantities its performance and success quite often seems unrelated to the logic of numbers.

This is, of … Continue reading

On the Eleventh Day of Christmas…Display Product Stories

“The 12 Gifts of Retail Christmas” for a Happy New Year

On the eleventh day of Christmas VM-Unleashed gave to me… No.11 “The Most Commercial Ways to Group & Display my Product Stories.”

 

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Whilst retailers are successful through selling individual options it is the presentation of product stories that attract customers and present a proposition that is appealing to customers.

Product stories will be a balance of category displays, coordinated themes, coordinated categories, silhouettes and hero product display.

Delivering the desired and required customer proposition … Continue reading