So now retail is all about the experience? Just what the heck does that mean?

L'Occitane new experiential retail concept store in New York I keep reading that success in retail today is all about the experience. Some retail influencers whom I cross paths with on the conference circuit often anchor their talks on some variation of customer experience being "the new black." Whether I'm working with clients or fielding questions at one … Continue reading So now retail is all about the experience? Just what the heck does that mean?

Will Story help Macy’s launch an exciting new chapter?

Macy's just launched Story concept shops in 36 stores across the United States. The new "narrative-driven retail experience" occupies about 1,500 square feet in most stores. The move comes less than a year after Macy's acquired the Story brand and made its founder, Rachel Shechtman, its brand experience officer. This is the latest step in Macy's attempts to become more … Continue reading Will Story help Macy’s launch an exciting new chapter?

Four truths and a lie from this year’s ShopTalk

Once again ShopTalk proved itself to be the must-attend retail event of the year. The 4th annual conference was both bursting with people and content, having grown to more than 8,000 attendees, five tracks and a solid number of prominent main-stage speakers across four action-packed days. Most presentations and panels that I attended were strong. … Continue reading Four truths and a lie from this year’s ShopTalk

Macy’s and JC Penney earnings offer evidence of the stall at the mall

On the basis of early results (and specious or unreliable indicators), many industry observers predicted this would be the best holiday season in a long time. It turns out, eh, not so much. In fact, at least one guy was pretty skeptical all along. But you don't have to be some sort of retail savant (I'm not) … Continue reading Macy’s and JC Penney earnings offer evidence of the stall at the mall

Retailers’ pointless pursuit of the promiscuous shopper

I'm not sure who said it first, but it's certainly true that great brands don't chase customers, they attract customers to them. But I think it goes deeper than that. This week, as many retailers close their books for the fiscal year, those that remain stuck in the boring middle are very likely to experience weakening margins--or margins that … Continue reading Retailers’ pointless pursuit of the promiscuous shopper