Weekly News Roundup: Sales Boom, Fierce Competition, Zombie Retailers

Weekly News Roundup

Here's what our team is reading this week... 

Sales Boom
An indication of consumer confidence in the U.S. economy, January 2017 retail sales rose more than expected — with online retail remaining strong and on-par with its December 2016 performance (Fox Business, Bloomberg)

Fierce Competition
Walmart will streamline online and in-store buying processes to be more efficient and competitive against Amazon (Reuters). Estimates say between 65-70 million people worldwide subscribe to Amazon Prime (RetailDive).

Zombie Retailers
The Wall Street Journal reports on the roster of retailers living on borrowed time. Shifting consumer preferences to online shopping poses problems for retailers averse to investing in digital (MarketWatch, CNBC). 

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Topics: Trends

Everything You Need to Know About the "Amazon Effect"

Amazon Go store in Seattle
Source: The Verge

In today's evolving retail landscape, many brands are struggling to strike a balance between ever-changing consumer demands and the alluring appeal of new technology.

To make matters worse, traditional retailers face an uphill battle against a company that's redefining the rules of the industry: Amazon. A recent study shows that half of retailers cite Amazon as their biggest threat.

Fast Company recently declared Amazon the world's most innovative company of 2017 due to the brand's unstoppable ability to grow into other markets, remain popular with consumers, and threaten traditional retailers. This has been dubbed the "Amazon effect."

Request the webinar recap for "4 Opportunities to Win in the Digital Retail World."

What is the "Amazon effect?"

Amazon's ability to construct holistic buyer personas in an age of erratic, nonlinear consumer journeys gives them a huge advantage over brands still trying to understand their customers' online and in-store habits. 

In Fast Company's words: "Our mobile-first, on-demand world finds its roots in Amazon’s founding idea: that digital commerce will radically reshape our marketplace."

Amazon's clear understanding of the consumer enables them to create optimal user experiences in store and online as well as penetrate new markets

What makes the "Amazon effect" so powerful?

Amazon Prime is the powerhouse behind the "Amazon effect." The membership provides services shoppers demand, such as free two-day shipping, streaming content, and more, while collecting valuable data and driving sales—Prime members spend 4x more than nonmembers annually. According to Fast Company:

To truly understand how Bezos is meshing size and agility in 2017, though, you need to look beyond sales figures ($100 billion in 2015) and the stock price (up more than 300% in the past five years) and consider three initiatives that drive Amazon today: Prime, the company’s rapidly proliferating $99-per-year membership program; an incursion into the physical world with brick-and-mortar stores, something the company has long resisted; and a restless rethinking of logistics, epitomized by a new fulfillment center an hour outside Seattle that features high-tech robots working alongside human workers like a factory of the future.

Traditionally brick-and-mortar big box stores' inability to refine omnichannel, reach consumers at all touchpoints, and pinpoint a linear buyer's journey make them vulnerable to the "Amazon effect." 

How are retailers combating the "Amazon effect?"

Innovative brands are investing in 4 key areas of their digital strategy. Find out what they are in our next webinar "4 Opportunities to Win in the Digital Retail World."

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Topics: Trends

[WEBINAR] 4 Opportunities to Win in the Digital Retail World

Download the webinar recap for "4 Opportunities to Win in the Digital Retail World"

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This year, retailers are scrambling to figure out how to balance shoppers' demands and expectations with the impacts of the "Amazon effect" to create the ultimate digital retail strategy.

Today's always-connected customers are empowered, and their buying journeys are more complex than ever. However, retailers often find difficulty linking shoppers' various points of engagement. On the other hand, Amazon continues to creep into more and more verticals, leaving brands feeling vulnerable and wondering how to stay top-of-mind. 

Request the webinar recap for "4 Opportunities to Win in the Digital Retail World."

Join us for our next webinar on Thursday, February 23 at 1 p.m. ET where we'll discuss how forward-thinking retailers are striving toward solutions to become more competitive and customer-centric.

Branding Brand and guest speaker Forrester's Brendan Witcher will cover:
  • Where leading retailers are investing this year
  • Why there’s not a one-size-fits-all digital retail strategy
  • What you need to know before you can be successful

Registration is closed.

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Topics: Trends Solutions Company Webinar

This Week at Branding Brand: Inspirational Art and Cool Stickers

 

The name of this conference room? You guessed it...Brandcastle 😏 💯 #BrandersDoItBetter #BBOfficeArt

A photo posted by Branding Brand (@brandingbrand) on


 

The sticker game is strong 👌 #BranderLife #DeveloperLife

A photo posted by Branding Brand (@brandingbrand) on


 

Always inspired by #Pittsburgh street art @baron_batch 😌 #Southside #BranderLife

A photo posted by Branding Brand (@brandingbrand) on

Topics: Company

Weekly News Roundup: Shop the Runway, iPhone 8, Accessible Eyewear

Weekly News Roundup

Here's what our team is reading this week... 

Shop the Runway
More runway brands are adapting to the see-now, buy-now model to create faster fashion (The New York Times, Glossy). Brands may not need Fashion Week (MarketWatch)

iPhone 8
OLED display, facial recognition, and wireless charging are potential features of iPhone 8 — and it might cost $1,000 (Engadget, Fast Company). It could launch on the iPhone's 10-year anniversary sales date in June, but September is more likely (Forbes).

Accessible Eyewear
Starting online and growing into brick-and-mortar is sustainable business for e-retailers; Warby Parker just opened its 47th location and 25 will pop up this year (CBS This Morning).

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Topics: Trends