As a retailer, wouldn't you love to have consumers say your store is the one they couldn't live without?
A study by Zogby Interactive found the bragging rights to that claim go to Wal-Mart Stores Inc. Twenty-six percent of shoppers said Wal-Mart is the place they'd choose if they could only shop one store for the rest of their lives. Target Corp. was close behind at 22 percent. Zogby polled 24,964 voters with a margin of error of +/-0.6.Some good news for department stores — Macy's Inc. was third. Costco Wholesale Corp. ranked fourth, followed by a three-way tie with Sears Roebuck and Co., J.C. Penney Co. Inc. and Kohl's Corp.
One surprise — not a single drugstore made the ranking. Wal-Mart's low prices were the main appeal, and not surprisingly, the chain appeals to lower-income households and those that are politically conservative. Target's demographics skew younger and better educated. They are more liberal and most likely supported President Obama versus his opponent, John McCain, who was the traditional Wal-Mart loyalist.
Costco has a stranglehold on those in the Western U.S. Sears customers tend to be older and more likely male. According to the survey, Sears has defied the expectations of many, and, for now, doesn't look like a company on the verge of demise. In a time when money is tight, consumers aren't looking for the fancy. They want utility, and Plain Jane retailer Sears is looking better, said the study. Sears is venturing more into beauty and that could be a good move.
More good news for many of these merchants comes from a report that says the industry's sweeping retrenchment is creating upward of $20 billion in sales opportunities for those who survive. Wal-Mart, Target, Kohl's, Macy's and J.C. Penney are among those that could be beneficiaries, according to Deutsche Bank. Companies that have many freestanding stores, like Kohl's, as opposed to being largely mall-based, will likely pick up greater share because of shifting trends in consumers' shopping habits.
Another study, this one from WSL Strategic Retail called How America Shops, says that "The New Shopping Order" has arrived. The study suggests that a sale is not a long-term value strategy. Here's the rub, the study suggested: once you've given shoppers everything in your discount arsenal, what's left? How do they know what real value is any more? Why should they trust you? The study warns that retailers, especially department stores, must not risk the "disenchantment of core shoppers."
The message from these studies is simple - retailers (and manufacturers) need to understand their core shoppers more than ever in this economic climate. They need to maintain, but also reach for new ones. And, drugstore chains need to find a way to make their stores more important in consumers' minds.
People, Places and Things
A few words with Grant Berry, creator and founder of Styli-Style. Berry is no stranger to the beauty business, having launched Pirate Cosmetics in the Eighties and Styli-Style in the Nineties. He sees sweeping changes in the nature of the business.
WWDBeautyNews: What's happening in the market?
Grant Berry: The old 80-20 [20 percent of items produce 80 percent of sales] doesn't work anymore. Retailers just don't have the space to present all those items. We've cut back on our line to present the bestsellers.
WWDBeautyNews: Tell us about new fixtures.
G.B.: We have a pod system called Styli pods that showcase our innovative products, but can be easily used on counters or in the display unit. We also have more space to communicate product descriptions and our testers and item numbers [on the packaging] are easy to see.
What's In Store
Sephora Goes for Three: Sephora plans to open a three-story unit in Manhattan's Times Square. The store is expected to feature an expanded product mix not found in existing units.
Saks Gets Aggressive: Saks advertised a get-$25-off-$100 beauty purchase online with free shipping to inspire sales.
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews
“Stranger Things” is getting a new cast member for season 2. Meet @sadiesink_, the 15-year-old who will be joining the Netflix series for its new season. You may recognize her from “The Glass Castle” with Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson, but the Texas native’s next role goes in an entirely different direction. She describes her character, Max, as “a rough and tumble skater girl [who] becomes friends with the boys at school.” The second season debuts on October 27. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdeye
Amid the Harvey Weinstein controversy, there’s another sector that’s being put under the spotlight for sexual abuse: the modeling industry. While rumors about abuse and sexual harassment of female and male models — and the photographers, agents and others who perpetrated it — have circulated within the fashion world for years, model @cameronrussell started posting stories from models on Instagram last week about abusive situations they’ve encountered — from sexual harassment and molestation to attempted rape. Over 75 have weighed in so far. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews
To celebrate its 16th anniversary, @dylanscandybar tapped designers and celebrities to create mosaics out of candy. The mosaics will be auctioned off to support the philanthropic cause of each participant’s choice. Pictured here is the mural created by @aliceandolivia's Stacey Bendet. For a first look at some of the other artwork being unveiled tonight, go to WWD.com. #wwdeye
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye