Discordant notes

Earlier this week, after my youngest daughter's college graduation, I had to fly back from Portland. Upon arriving at PDX, as an Executive Platinum member, I was able to check-in quickly and I practically glided through security. When I got to the gate I learned that I had scored a first class upgrade (#winning). Once … Continue reading Discordant notes

For a growing number of retailers, small is the new black

It's hardly news that the retail industry is going through significant contraction of selling space as an uptick in bankruptcies and outright liquidations forces hundreds of locations to close en masse. In addition, dozens of struggling retailers continue to shutter outlets hoping to improve profitability or avoid a similar fate. In fact, there is a … Continue reading For a growing number of retailers, small is the new black

These brands apparently did not get the ‘retail apocalypse’ memo

For a couple of years now pundits, analysts, journalists and various other retail observers have been advancing the "retail apocalypse" narrative. A typical story or opinion piece warns of the "death of the mall,"  points out how "e-commerce is eating the world," and generally suggests that "traditional" retailers are toast. Alas, facts are stubborn things, as I … Continue reading These brands apparently did not get the ‘retail apocalypse’ memo

Retail’s new fork in the road: Understanding ‘buying’ vs. ‘shopping’

As I pointed out in my last piece, it is all too easy to be misled by high-level statistics and narratives that paint an incomplete picture of the retail landscape. Similarly, many fail to appreciate the underlying dynamics that (increasingly) separate industry winners from the losers and that which will ultimately determine when online shopping starts to … Continue reading Retail’s new fork in the road: Understanding ‘buying’ vs. ‘shopping’

Omni-channel’s migration dilemma: Holiday edition

Last year I wrote a post about what I called retail's "omni-channel migration dilemma" wherein I observed that while the deployment of so-called omni-channel strategies--i.e. making it easier for consumers to shop anytime, anywhere, anyway--improves the customer experience immensely, the outcomes for most retailers were, thus far, not quite so wonderful. At the heart of … Continue reading Omni-channel’s migration dilemma: Holiday edition