With Toys R Us gone, H & M facing significant difficulties and a number of other ‘big name’ retailers already facing disaster in just the first quarter of 2018 it is obvious that this is going to be another challenging year, even for the biggest of the big names in the industry.
In this excellent Forbes piece, Walter Loeb examines the biggest challenges facing any retailer in 2018 and how the likes of Macy’s and Nordstrom – the old guard – are trying to meet them.
Apr 9, 2018, Forbes.com
By Walter Loeb
Challenges Facing Retail in 2018 – How Nordstrom and Macy’s Tackle These Issues
A quarter of the year 2018 has already past. It is evident that major retailers are facing great challenges to win in the marketplace.
Challenges include: (1) winning on the internet, (2) being quick and responsive in distribution of merchandise, and (3) especially gaining customer traffic in physical stores. Success of efforts in any of these areas will play out over time; progress for any major retailer can only be measured as the year passes and we track their ability to gain share of market and sustain profitable growth.
What’s involved here? There’s a need to think about retail business in new, broader terms and then make investments from the perspective of how they can improve customer satisfaction.
1. Omnichannel. While I dislike the word – multichannel would be more appropriate – omnichannel is the key to long-term success for many companies. In a brilliant report on enterprise resource planning shared by CGS (Computer Generated Solutions, Inc.), Nordstrom is lauded for creating constant excellent customer experience across all sales channels. At Nordstrom, it’s always been their culture to think every customer is “family.” They have applied that mindset to come up with new selling models that respond to what today’s customer wants and then they make investments to back up the strategy. Omnichannel success is enabled by technology that invigorates sales, accommodates a fast and flexible supply chain, and keeps the focus on customer service. Read More