Are you truly a Retail Brand or just a Product Provider?

On the surface this may appear to be a question stimulated by the omnichannel evolution. In truth it has always been an important question however in previous times with a less demanding customer and a lower level of competition, being a retail brand was a less pressing consideration and the repercussions of not having a clear definition as a business less perilous to the bottom line.

How times have changed!

 

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What e-commerce has done is to create the need for every business selling … Continue reading

E-commerce efficiency: Facilitating your failure?

Don’t get me wrong I’m a believer in e-commerce and an avid online shopper, and I get as frustrated as the next man or woman when it comes to inefficient websites, product misinterpretation and expensive and extensive delivery times. And of course, efficiency is an absolute essential to any online retailer, and will make the difference between survival and extinction in the highly charged competitive online market place.

However there is more to being a retailer than being efficient. 

 

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However there is more … Continue reading

Celebrating Omnichannel: Exorcising the ghosts of Christmas past, present & future…

So the winner yet again this Christmas was online retail.

Also, apparently and a little contradictory, Amazon was at the same time killing off retail itself, which is a little strange considering that the last time I logged on to Amazon, it was indeed a retailer.

 

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It all makes for good headlines, even if becoming a little stale and increasingly confusing, however beyond being pedantic about headlines, retail is far from dead, physical stores are still hugely popular and Amazon itself opened only … Continue reading

“Building the Passion Supply Chain: The Beauty and the Beast!”

From beginning to end…from conception to consumption…nurture an inner pride that translates to a public passion, so that the flow of enthusiasm continues well beyond the selling process.

As part of your core business processes measure and monitor passion as though it were as tangible as gold coins because that is what passion will surely produce.

 

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A successful supply chain is a fundamental pre-requisite for any retail business. Creating and managing it requires small fortunes of investment, complicated integrated technologies, coordinated and sequential … Continue reading

Everything’s Coming Up Roses: Cath’s Cornucopia

As part of VM-unleashed’s 10th anniversary year we take a look back at some retail milestones from the last decade and explain why each store’s message is as relevant for us today as it was then.

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Cath Kidston flagship store, Piccadilly London

“Amongst the proud pillars of Piccadilly a little floral femininity has broken through the winter weather. Cath Kidston’s first flagship is a bright beacon of colour inviting the passer-by to explore a world of nostalgic designs, a celebration of classic kitsch, a … Continue reading

Passion is an absolute pre-requisite for commercial retail success

Successful retail businesses are driven by passionate people,
with sales & profits the commercial outcome of a passion for product and lifestyle.

 

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It would be unfair and inaccurate to say that retail businesses have been without passion as in fact some of the most famous and successful retailers ever, from the Limited Group to the Body Shop, have been built around passionate individuals. However too many other companies, founded in less demanding and competitive times, rely too much on simply selling the … Continue reading

8th Joy of Retail Spring: Defining Omnichannel Assortments

The question “how much product should I put in my stores?” has always generated animated and healthy debate amongst retail businesses.

That question, and the discussions around it, just got a whole lot more complicated as the opportunities and threats of e-commerce and true omni-channel assortment allocation has made store capacities one of the most important decisions for retailers to get right.

 

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The reduction of physical store capacities for an omni-channel retailer, supported by flexible and reliable inter-channel replenishment, allows the development of inspirational, … Continue reading

7th Joy of Retail Spring: Grading International Assortments

It used to be one of the great discussion points regarding customer demographics in the early days of international expansion.
“Are all customers the same?”

Clearly experience and time has shown us that they are not the same – not within a single country and absolutely not internationally. Any retailer expanding to new lands must be aware and take actions to focus and modify the proposition – starting with the assortment on offer.

 

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Correct benchmarking and analysis of different international market trends in product taste, shopping behaviour … Continue reading

6th Joy of a Retail Spring – Secrets behind Product Sales

Any good retailer knows from its product sales what its customers’ buy and equally what seems to be impossible to sell to them, but why? Do you know why?

Is it simply the wrong product, or perhaps something more subtle in the colour, the size, the style or the taste, or simply something as obvious as the price point? Proper analysis of sales figures combined with benchmarking of competitor assortments holds the key to unlocking further the potential spending of our customers.

 

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Through identifying the hierarchy of … Continue reading

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