5.122014

it’s time to rethink retail

Today’s headlines about brick and mortar companies are troubling.

Office Depot just announced it will close 400 stores. Radio Shack wants to close 1,100 stores but its lenders are resisting.  Sears is looking to sell off chunks of its real estate.brick and mortar companies - rethink retailing strategy

The prevailing wisdom of retailing strategy seems to be minimizing investment in brick and mortar.  But I advise my clients not to be so quick to write-off retail.  In fact, some brands are using different approaches and introducing innovations that hold great promise for driving sales and profits at retail — and I’m not talking about e-commerce fulfillment or in-store price comparison apps.  The approaches that seem the most sustainable and differentiating are the ones that leverage the core elements of the retail experience – facilities, store design, in-person interactions, etc.

My latest column on Forbes, Barnes & Noble Should Rally Around, Not Retreat, from Retail Stores, covers some of the ideas that I believe the bookseller, and other struggling retailers like it, should explore.  Please check it out and let me know what you think.  What approaches do you think hold the most promise for stores?  Comments are open here and on Forbes.com .

 

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