Lands’ End unveiled an new store concept measuring 5,000 square feet in Kildeer, IIl earlier this month. It’s the first of up to six new stores Lands End will open in 2018, according to the company. The store’s new concept offers customers a modern […]
Lands’ End unveiled an new store concept measuring 5,000 square feet in Kildeer, IIl earlier this month. It’s the first of up to six new stores Lands End will open in 2018, according to the company. The store’s new concept offers customers a modern shopping experience that puts the customer first. It features a fitting room with comfortable chairs and catalogs. There is also a phone connection to the company’s call centre, sales associates who can answer questions and a kiosk with touchscreen technology. This kiosk allows customers to search the entire Lands End assortment online. All orders placed at Lands’ End are eligible for free shipping and return. The store features rooms that can be used to separate and define different clothing categories, visual displays that highlight seasonal and iconic products and note their history, and digital signage that showcases multimedia content like photos and videos.
Total Retail’s View: It is always refreshing to hear of a retailer trying new stores, especially considering all the talk about the demise of the retail store. Lands’ End, a traditional retail brand, is trying to adapt to the times and better serve today’s customers. Following a strong earnings report, Lands End announced in January that it plans to open 40-60 stores over the next five year. After 11 quarters of decline, the retailer reported positive earnings for its fourth quarter 2017. The fourth quarter net income was $39.8million on $510million in revenue. This compares to the $94.8 million net loss on $458.8million revenue for the comparable quarter last year. Lands End made its first 12-month profit since 2014.
Three Things Toys’R”Us can Learn from Today’s Retail Survivors
One man’s fortune may be another’s chance, as they say. Toys”R”Us will auction off 30+ properties and close hundreds more after its bankruptcy. Other retailers like Target, Aldi, and Big Lots are lined up to bid huge amounts of money in the hope of increasing their physical presence and foot traffic.
Some brands are still exceeding quarterly earnings expectations in the retail sector and are implementing aggressive growth strategies, while others are closing down stores and declaring bankruptcy. What are the retail industry’s survivors doing right now?
The Customer Experience is Key
Brick-and-mortar stores are under greater pressure to stand out from the rest in order to retain and keep customers.
Product selection, especially in niche markets, is not enough anymore. Today’s consumers expect immersive in-store experiences. LEGO stores are a great example of immersive in-store experiences. Both children and adults can participate in hands-on activities, see their models come to life using the digital box, and pick their favorite pieces to make their next brick creation. American Girl is another brand that has evolved to meet customers’ expectations. The stores offer exclusive on-site events and all-inclusive birthday packages. You can find similar dolls and brick sets at big-box retailers. Sure. However, LEGO and American Girl are able to offer unique in-store experiences that give customers a reason for walking past their doors.
- Magento Pos
- Shopify Pos
- Bigcommerce Pos
- Woocommerce Pos
- Netsuite pos
- Bigcommerce automation
- Shopify automation
Team empowerment through tools, training and transparency
Recent surveys of district and retail store managers revealed three key areas that impact employee morale, performance, and distinguish today’s winners and losers in retail: poor communications, outdated technologies, corporate alignment, and outdated tools and technologies. Unhappy managers were found to be 150 percent less likely than others to feel aligned to their corporate teams. 21 percent reported that they have difficulty understanding key priorities and are therefore less likely to feel like they can trust their employees. Unhappy managers reported twice as many instances that their company didn’t have effective communication systems between corporate and their stores, and twice as often agreed that better communication would lead to a greater store’s performance. 20% of those with low job satisfaction were more likely than others to say they don’t have all the tools needed to do their jobs effectively.
These gaps are the first line defense against the shockingly low eNPS -20 among retail leaders. Retailers can lower turnover and costs by focusing on transparency and alignment within the organization and providing the right training and tools for front-line brand ambassadors.
Data’s power: How to harness it
Data opens up huge opportunities for retail. It allows brands to reach the right customers, offer high-quality products, and personalize their shopping experience to increase brand loyalty and drive sales. Despite having access to greater amounts of data than ever before, retailers today have more options and can use numerous technologies to search and shop online. However, data paralysis is a common problem for many brands. According to 40% of companies, they report that they have difficulty using data. Retail is the most affected industry.
Today’s retail success stories are not focused on more data. They focus on finding the right data and putting it into action. Data science allows brands to not only identify trends but also pinpoint their drivers. This allows them to make faster, smarter decisions and enable agility within their organization.
Toys”R”Us learned these lessons a bit too late. But this does not have to be the case with other brands trying to succeed in an ever-changing industry. Brick-and-mortar stores can succeed by focusing on customer experience and using tools to help them. Prioritizing actionable data is key.