Tag Archives: recession

Are pop-up stores a way for fighting retail recession?

We have already talked about pop-up stores a while ago, but a recent news about Walmart opening pop-up stores hit our attention not because of their being “pop-up”, but because the American giant decided to create small pop-up stores to face the upcoming holiday demand, driving it from a physical location (the pop-up store) to Walmart.com. While Walmart customers will be able to purchase high margin gift solutions directly from the store, they can also pick up items ordered from the retail giant’s website and pick them up in the store with no delivery charge under the Site-to-Store and Pick-Up Today programs.

The stores, located in Souther California,  which bear signs reading Walmart.com, opened November 2 and are expected to remain open through December 31. Unlike its recently launched Walmart Express or its Neighborhood Market small-format stores, this new concept does not feature food or other convenience products.

“This is just a small test we’re conducting during the holiday season to offer local customers easier, more convenient access to quality products at everyday low prices,” Wal-Mart spokesperson Lorenzo Lopez toldCSP Daily News. “These small stores, located in the Topanga Mall in West Los Angeles and Horton Plaza in San Diego, will offer customers access to more than one million general merchandise items currently available through Walmart.com.”

He added, “The store will display key holiday items such as toys, electronics, gaming and home theater. These items can be picked up at the Walmart.com store or nearest Walmart store via the Site to Store and Pick Up Today options. Products can also be delivered to customers’ homes via the standard shipping options currently available through Walmart.com. Customers will also have an opportunity to purchase a small selection of items at the store, mostly accessories.”

Lopez said, “We’re always looking for ways to better serve our customers, so it’s not uncommon for us to test different formats to learn how customers respond to products and services. These stores are just another way to give customers a continuous experience by bringing together our stores, our brand and our footprint through eCommerce.”

A growing number of shoppers are in fact using technology to research and purchase gifts. These test stores are an interesting way to let shoppers research and buy online with the option to “get it now.” The highly targeted assortment and short-term leases are a low-risk way for Walmart to reach new shoppers and capture shopping occasions it may not otherwise have access to. Maybe most importantly, the pop-up stores could drive shoppers that don’t currently shop at Walmart (or Walmart.com) to the retailer’s website.

Preparing for the consumer economy of 2020

In a recent super session at Retail’s BIG Show, Ira Kalish, Director of Global Economics for Deloitte Research, gave an all-encompassing overview on the state of the global retail industry ten years from now, as well as his take on what the consumer of the future will look like.
Kalish kicked off with a run through of recent developments in global retailing, noting that it’s always useful to think about the future by reviewing the past.
In particular, Kalish highlighted some of the paths that lead towards the economic crisis of 2008 and 2009 and the lessons that were learned from that crisis: massive consumer leveraging in the U.S., U.K. and Spain; the collapse of the asset price bubble; emerging currencies rising; U.S. consumers paying down debts and saving more; housing no longer being seen as a source of economic growth; China’s move towards consumerism and consumer spending rising as a source of GDP; and the challenges faced in Europe due to imbalances between countries like Germany and Portugal, Ireland and Spain.

As for what retailers can expect in the consumer economy of 2020, Kalish pointed to a number of challenges and opportunities retailers should certainly have on their long term radar, such as the massive increase in emerging middle classes and the disproportionate share of growth in emerging areas of the world like Indonesia, Colombia and Africa.

The effects of an aging population in an increasingly affluent world will also be a key consideration for retailers of all shapes and sizes, while hot markets with younger demographics (India, Middle East and Africa) will also keep global retailers on their toes.

Kalish also noted, the impact of obesity, changing global food market dynamics, an ever-increasing focus on sustainability and the possibility of a social media revolution could play a heavy role within the consumer economy of 2020.

So what can retailers do to prepare for this new consumer outlook? Kalish believes that aligning company values with those of consumers will be critically important, as will leading and listening to customers. Taking care of your brands, your people and your investments will also pay dividends when it comes to engaging with consumers, something that will be fundamental for 2020’s consumer – and not a bad idea for 2011. (Source: NRF)

MENA: retail sales are still growing

Retail sales in the MENA region jumped 13.2 percent last year, making it the only region in the world to post double digit growth, accountancy firm Deloitte has said.

In its latest retail report, Deloitte said emerging markets were the most promising for consumer sales and marked the Middle East as a stand-out region.
“While global economic growth is on the mend, most of it is taking place in emerging markets, many of which are experiencing rapidly increasing consumer spending,” said Nasser Sagga, audit partner at Deloitte and Touche.
“Within the Middle East there is a number of emerging economies that meet the criteria of strong growth prospects and good demographics – Egypt and Turkey being two such examples.”

The report identified the 250 largest retailers around the world in 2010, more than 11 percent of which were based in the MENA region.
Despite seeing a significant drop in trade and tourism during the financial crisis, the Gulf remains a key a market for retailers.

A report last year by real estate consultancy CB Richard Ellis found Dubai ranked second only to London in terms of the number of global brands with a presence in the city.
In a ranking of 294 of the world’s top retailers, more than half had a presence in Dubai. “Despite continued uncertainty for some retailers across the world, luxury brand retailers have remained active and were responsible for the most new store openings,” said Peter Gold, head of Europe, Middle East and Africa cross-border retail at CBRE. (Source: ArabianBusiness.com, Photo: hadiyahrewardnetwork.com)