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

Omnichannel Overload: Finding focus in a confusion of retail possibilities

Why is omnichannel the focus of retail?

The short answer to this is because it’s what the customer wants, and never has the old adage “the customer is always right” been so apt or so accurate as in the consumer-centric world in which we now live.

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Customers want the convenience of the online world with the ability to browse, choose and pay in the comfort of their own homes, and with the rapid rise of m-commerce the freedom to do these things beyond the … 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

Loaf at your Leisure: Disruptive Relaxation

Loaf, in a purely traditional definition, is a retailer of sofas, beds and furniture. However in the context of the traditional way of doing business it is a disruptor of the highest order bringing new ideas, imagination and inspiration to the table of home retailing.

 

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To begin, Loaf is not just a clever name with its implication of relaxation in the modern media world, or its application to product names and its staff of “Loafers,” but is a summary of a state of … Continue reading

“Is Bluewater’s expansion killing Kent’s High Streets?”

Tim Radley, CEO VM-unleashed, interviewed on Radio Kent as part of its debate on retail in the county.

 

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Bluewater Shopping Centre has recently been given planning permission for a number of expansions including a leisure development around its lake complex and the arrival of a new Primark flagship. Already under pressure from the regional super-shopping centre local towns are bracing themselves for another blow to their high streets.

But is it really time to write off the high street as a shopping … 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

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

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

Personalised Promotional Activity for OmniChannel Customers

What has always been the most important thing when communicating with customers?
The answer is relevance.

 

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A promotional message that is given in “the right place at the right time” is relevant to the customer, is of benefit and will deliver a sale – the customer will shake your hand. Equally a promotional message which is irrelevant will confuse and annoy, will certainly not generate a sale and the customer is more likely to “wring your neck than shake your hand” should … Continue reading