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July 21, 2014

Shopper Insights in Action Conference 2014 – IIR – Event Recap

Howard TelfordAnalyst Insight by Howard Telford - Beverages Analyst

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This past Wednesday, the 14th annual Shopper Insights in Action conference concluded in Chicago, Illinois. As always, the event focused on strategies to improve shopper activation across all kinds of consumer retail categories and channels, providing the shopper side of consumer marketing (and its research suppliers) an engaging forum to share ideas and success stories.

From a beverages and food service perspective, the three-day event at Navy Pier left me considering the need to address three, macro-level organizational challenges in the drinks industry:

1.       Using ‘big data’ more effectively

As the event’s exhibit hall demonstrated, there are a myriad of methodologically different ways to collect, measure and interpret the in-store responses of consumers to your products and shelves. As an industry that frequently delivers and merchandises its products through a two-tier bottling system (or other independent direct delivery partners), measuring the effectiveness of in-store activity - displays and product location - is vital. How can marketing and channel management teams demonstrate that ‘soft’ information on shopper response, preference or opinion is robust and indicative of volume growth or incremental revenue? Brands and their retail partners must work harder to interpret and contextualise data and insights in order to effectively advocate for change within their businesses.

Research focused and data literate leadership certainly helps. Keynote speaker Sir Terry Leahy, former CEO of Tesco plc, spoke about the need to improve the dissemination and understanding of data within large retailers and other organizations. As research tools become more powerful and useful – from generating understanding of potentially new, developing markets, to specific, localised consumer segments and their behaviours – it remains important that these insights are clear and actionable while reaching the right pairs of eyes.   

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July 13, 2014

Sound Bite: Expansion Strategies for Private Label Manufacturers

6a01310f54565d970c01a73de96494970d-120wiPinar HosafciWith Lianne van den Bos - Food Analyst and Pinar Hosafci - Food Analyst

Private label manufacturers need to establish various strategies when targeting different areas of the world. For example, in areas such as Western Europe and North America where private label is well established, manufacturers can add products at different price points to attract consumers. In areas where private label is less established, companies can export their private label brands or expand their chains. UK-based Waitrose has established both of these strategies, exporting its private label goods as far as Chile and Japan and expanding its physical outlets outside the UK.

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July 10, 2014

Five Key Takeaways from Starbucks' M-Commerce Success

The Starbucks mobile payments app has provided one of the best case studies for how to drive consumer adoption of in-store purchases made via a mobile phone. For retailers or foodservice operators looking to replicate Starbucks’ success, there are several best practices to keep in mind before developing, implementing and launching a mobile payment app.

 Join Euromonitor in attending the Connect Mobile Innovation Summit in Chicago, IL from August 18-20th. Senior Consumer Finance Analyst Michelle Evans will be there with many others to learn more and talk about mobile payments in the foodservice industry.

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July 8, 2014

Strategies for Growth in the Japanese Beer Market

With Hiromi Yamaguchi, Research Analyst

 Beer in Japan has been on a steady decline in volume terms for the past ten years, and beer manufacturers in the country are working against this trend with several strategies. Focusing on the premium beer segment is one successful strategy as Japanese consumers are choosing quality over quantity. Beer manufacturers are also using convenience stores such as 7-Eleven and Lawson as test markets for different promotions and flavors. Finally, the craft beer market in Japan is small but growing, mirroring the expansion of the craft beer market in the US.

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July 4, 2014

Event Preview: WWD Digital Forum London 2014

Ashma.kundeAnalyst Insight by Ashma Kunde - Apparel and Footwear Analyst

View Ashma Kunde's profile on LinkedIn

It is evident that technology has shaken up every aspect of the apparel and footwear industry, from the way consumers discover and purchase products, to the way they interact with brands and peers. The WWD Digital Forum, taking place on July 10th 2014, brings together top executives across fashion, beauty and retail industries to address the most pertinent issues businesses face in this ever-evolving digital landscape.

The Omni-Channel Agenda

Omni-channel retailing has become a ubiquitous term in the strategies of apparel brands across the board. With no established playbook, it is evident that the rules are still being written with new technologies and innovations. Arguably the most important part of omni-channel retailing is that each piece of the omni-channel puzzle should connect to provide a single narrative.

Kate Spade has been held up as a poster child for a successful omni-channel strategy, which is completely in tandem with the brand’s target consumer. In 2013, Kate Spade Saturday launched digitally-enhanced window displays in four Manhattan locations, in partnership with eBay. Consumers were able to browse products and make instant purchases on the touchscreen windows, with the option of free one-hour delivery.

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July 2, 2014

Chinese Companies’ Overseas Acquisition Spree Picks up Pace, Part 1

Hope.LeeAnalyst Insight by Hope Lee, Senior Beverages Analyst

All industry analysts will no doubt be aware of Chinese companies’ ongoing overseas shopping spree, with the latest story being Sanpower’s proposed acquisition of the British-based House of Fraser department store. While Chinese consumers appear to be the global growth drivers of luxury goods, Chinese companies and private investors are eyeing up foreign targets and buying their assets. Like it or loathe it, the hungry and thirsty Chinese dragon is coming.

These Chinese acquirers take various forms, for example sovereign wealth fund corporations, state-owned conglomerates, wealthy private entrepreneurs and publicly-listed companies. All are armed with substantial foreign reserves which have been accumulated during three decades of strong domestic economic development and they are eager to strengthen their domestic positions as well as expand internationally. In 2014, China’s gross national savings will be close to US$5 trillion, while US savings will be only US$3 trillion. The industries in which they are interested include natural resources, automobiles, real estate, banking, retail and agribusiness. Today’s list is long but tomorrow’s could be even longer.

Financially, China is the US’ largest creditor, with the majority of investment in one single currency generally being seen as a risk. Understandingly, China and Chinese companies are keen to spread the known financial risks and balance their assets in a basket of currencies and geographies. They just need to find the right targets in the right continents.

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July 1, 2014

The “Price War” Dilemma Still Weighing on Tesco

Raphael_MoreauAnalyst Insight by Raphael Moreau - Retailing Analyst

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Tesco’s first-quarter results showed an almost unprecedented decline in its like-for-like sales in the UK, drawing renewed criticism from the City, while its shares were downgraded two notches by Moody’s. Its 27th June AGM gave a forum to impatient shareholders to vent their frustrations at the company’s results. Is Tesco’s current strategy well-founded and should investors be confident in its CEO Philip Clarke’s ability to turn a corner towards recovery, or is it simply following the wrong path and in need of a radical rethink?

Should Tesco Engage in an All-Out “Price War”...

Tesco’s price cut ambitions appear to be too modest, with a £200 million target to invest in price reductions. Asda and Morrisons have unveiled plans to invest £1 billion in achieving price cuts through cost savings over a three-year and five-year period, respectively. While these top line amounts cannot be directly compared, not least because they cover different timeframes, they do indicate that Morrisons, facing even deeper market share erosion than Tesco, is making price cuts its top strategic priority. In contrast, Tesco appears to remain hesitant with regard to engaging in so-called price wars, balancing price cuts against other strategic goals.

At the heart of the “price war” dilemma is the question of whether the threat from discounters is being overplayed. As their penetration still lags well behind other European markets, the stellar performance of the two largest discounters Aldi and Lidl is likely to continue being a fixture of the UK grocery retailing landscape in the short to medium term. Reasserting its low-price positioning could be a cornerstone of Tesco’s recovery efforts and the most reliable way to reverse the erosion of its customer base to the discounters.

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June 29, 2014

Confectionery Trends and Innovations at the 2014 Convenience U CARWACS Show in Toronto

Frank JiangAnalyst Insight by Frank Jiang - Contributing Analyst

One of the most attended industry trade shows for convenience store and forecourt retailer operators in Canada, the Convenience U CARWACS Show concluded on 19 March 2014 in Toronto after a busy couple of days.

The convenience store channel continues to play an important role in a number of product areas in Canada, including beverages, tobacco and packaged food. Within the latter, confectionery is one of the key categories, driven by impulse purchases, and its performance in convenience retail is drawing considerable attention from manufacturers, distributors and marketers of sweets and chocolate.

Euromonitor International participated in the event and exchanged views with industry players, with a particular focus on confectionery products.

Sharing Occasions and a Return to Large-Sized Chocolate Bars

A noticeable trend observed by a number of industry participants in Canada is the increasing sharing of sweets and chocolate with family and friends as well as to connect with other people. Subsequently, manufacturers of confectionery are seeking to tap into this trend and encourage purchase by increasing the size of individual bags/pouches of selflines/softlines.

Furthermore, in categories like tablets and countlines, smaller pack sizes and portion-control products have failed to excite many consumers in Canada, including the female consumers the products sought to target. This is leading to changes in product development and marketing activities, with a return to regular and large-sized chocolate bars to support sales.

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June 25, 2014

Amazon Hopes to Spark Lagging Grocery Segment of Internet Retailing

Internet retailing is the largest segment of overall retailing, but certain areas, such as grocery products, beverages and household products lag behind in digital sales. In an attempt to gain sales in these segments, internet retailer Amazon launched Amazon Fresh in Los Angeles and San Francisco, which delivers grocery products on a daily basis to consumers. More recently, Amazon launched Amazon Prime Pantry, which consumers can use to deliver non-perishable goods. Amazon hopes consumers in large urban areas and small rural areas, where grocery stores are difficult to access, will utilize these services.

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June 22, 2014

Asia Pacific's Top 500 Retailers

Reatil Asia LogoEuromonitor International and Retail Asia are pleased to announce the launch of the eleventh edition of the Retail Asia Top 500 Retailers Ranking, listing the largest retailers in the region.  

The retailers on the Retail Asia Top 500 Ranking had total combined revenue of $1.035 trillion, down nearly 3 percent from the previous year, due to a weakening yen. The decline in combined sales primarily was caused by the weakening exchange rate of major Asian currencies against the US dollar, which was the common denominator used for the Top 500 ranking. 

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Recent Posts

Shopper Insights in Action Conference 2014 – IIR – Event Recap

Sound Bite: Expansion Strategies for Private Label Manufacturers

Five Key Takeaways from Starbucks' M-Commerce Success

Strategies for Growth in the Japanese Beer Market

Event Preview: WWD Digital Forum London 2014

Chinese Companies’ Overseas Acquisition Spree Picks up Pace, Part 1

The “Price War” Dilemma Still Weighing on Tesco

Confectionery Trends and Innovations at the 2014 Convenience U CARWACS Show in Toronto

Amazon Hopes to Spark Lagging Grocery Segment of Internet Retailing

Asia Pacific's Top 500 Retailers