J.Crew has had problems for years — but the coronavirus accelerated all of them. Now, the retailer is filing for bankruptcy. The question remains: how did it get here? And will it ever be able to rebound again?
For the vast majority of respondents, optimizing e-commerce channels is the most important step. As more and more people move to shopping online, retailers of all types are trying to make sure their e-commerce and delivery channels are optimized -- as wine seller Winc’s co-founder Brian Smith said during a Modern Retail Plus talk last week, this is an opportunity to “meet customers where they are” -- aka, at home, on their phones.
JCPenney already faced a tough road in re-opening its stores, as the company was struggling to grow sales even before the coronavirus. Now, it has another headache to contend with as it dukes it out with Sephora over its shops-in-shops.
As more states are set to allow non-essential retail stores to re-open, one of their first orders of business will likely be figuring out how to get personal protective equipment, namely masks and gloves, for their store employees. But as the plight of essential retailers has shown, getting access to enough PPE for employees is no easy task.
Many department stores and other legacy retail brands are seeing issues they thoughts were months away come to a head now. At the core is the issue of cash-flow. With billions of dollars in debt and stores unable to sell product, these older brands may finally have to face the music.
Temporarily, respondents said they would be “leaving” or reducing the use of nearly every single retail channel, except mass retail stores. The majority of respondents were leaving pop-up shops, shop-in-shops, permanent brand stores, as well as “retail-as-a-service’ platforms.
To many, Facebook Marketplace is a destination for used goods and/or oddities. But more brands are looking to the online marketplace to sell their goods -- especially as they experience woes with Amazon. While there is more interest in the social network's commerce tools now, it's unclear this wave is longterm.
It's impossible to predict the future, but Vuori senior director of retail Catherine Pike thinks "huge advancements in brick and mortar retail" are coming now that brands are out of their comfort zone.
Apparel retailers have a ticking time bomb on their hands while stores remain closed. They have to figure out how to move what will likely be an unprecedented level of excess inventory once stores re-open and beyond, while taking as little of a loss on it is possible.The challenge is two-fold: first, retailers have a huge amount of inventory in stores that they can't sell right now. That inventory also risks becoming more out of season the longer that store closures drag on. Second, because it's unclear just how much consumer demand there will be the rest of the year, retailers are also trying to figure out what's in the pipeline for the rest of the year that they can still cancel, so they don't risk being left with too much inventory in the fall and beyond.
As no one knows exactly how much consumer spending will rebound (or not) in the coming months, retail and e-commerce businesses are being forced to reconsider every single expense. The most obvious way for companies to cut costs is to lay off or furlough employees. And many of them have already done that. But beyond that, how do you save money? Consumer investors are advising startups to think of every single expense as negotiable. Here are some of their tips on places to save money.
Visibility is a real problem for execs across media and marketing. It’s unclear how long this crisis will last, and the feeling in the first few weeks that this would be as simple as flicking a switch back on once things go “back to normal” has largely dissipated.
The coronavirus outbreak is likely to permanently change the relationship between workers at retailers that have been deemed essential, like grocery, hardware, and big-box stores, and their employers. Each day, the list of announcements from retailers about new steps they are taking to keep employees safe in stores, as well as to thank them for their work, is growing longer. While many of the benefits issued are being billed as temporary, what's become clear in recent weeks is that as their jobs are being classified as essential, retail workers see their jobs as being more worthy than ever before of better benefits.
Spring is typically the busiest time of year for hardware stores like Lowe's and Home Depot, as customers flock to stores for deals on plants, gardening equipment and other home renovation tools. But during a pandemic, high foot traffic is problematic. In addition to grocery stores and pharmacies, most states have classified hardware stores like Lowe's and Home Depot as essential in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. An ongoing source of frustration for many hardware store employees in recent days has been how many shoppers are still coming to the store for what non-essential items.
Despite China seemingly back in action with funding, venture capitalists don't expect a quick restart for U.S. startups. “I really don't see many deals starting and completing during the quarantine."
To engage users and improve customer profiling, CPG brands are closely studying consumers as they begin to research products on the company's website.
At the Modern Retail Virtual Forum, we’ll bring together senior retail marketers online to discuss the challenges they’re facing and the solutions they’re seeking in the era of smarter retail.Buy Passes