How to Survive the (nearly non-existent)
Take a Deep Breath
And look around your store. If you sell discounted fashions, groceries and home goods in volume; lumber, paint, and power tools; or serve quick, casual meals – relax. The much-feared Retail Apocalypse isn’t coming to get you.
stores opened in the first half of 2017.
more are planned for 2018.
Mass merchandisers and fast food lead the way.
An Apocryphal Apocalypse?
Like most wild rumors, this one began innocently enough. Fung Global Data are the masters of Department Store and Apparel trends—the categories that suffered most in the first half of 2017.
Department Stores closed
Soft Goods stores closed
That’s What the Media Reported
because there wasn’t much contradictory data.
bad news gets more clicks than good news.
there was an obvious villain: online retailers. (Villains get more clicks, too.)
Now, Here’s What the Media Missed...
Overall retail rose by $121.5 billion in the first seven months of 2017.
751 brands are adding stores (versus 278 closings).
Dollar Stores, C-Stores and Beauty are driving a retail renaissance.
to Survive and Thrive
So, there’s no widespread Retail Apocalypse. But you still face challenges. These six steps can help you overcome them.
Make shopping an experience
Want customers to converge on your stores? Give them compelling reasons to close their laptops and come in. Start with smiling, customer-centric service and an ambience that’s inviting.
“Out of stock” is out of the question
There’s a 1-in-4 chance you don’t carry an item that a shopper seeks. Technologies like RFID and image recognition can right-size inventories — and free up associates to provide customer-centric service.
Be a better consumer (of IT)
Spending 2% of last year’s revenues on this year’s IT? Leading retailers have jettisoned that formula, and now spend up to seven times more than their weakest (not their strongest) competitors.
Jump into the cloud
It’s the shortest step to transforming your operations, giving a single, unified view of your inventory and your customers. Last year, the cloud figured in 34% of all retail spending on software.
Your customers are mobile, and (surprise!) so are top retailers. Their associates are 150% more likely to use mobile devices to close sales and 250% more likely to use them in other tasks.
Follow the retail leaders
Compared with the competition, the leaders make IT transformation a higher priority by 135%. Lower supply chain costs are 145% more important. And at 194%, associate training tops everything else.