Thursday, April 29, 2010

World Retailing: Fight for the Shopper and Buyer in the US

In the Financial Times World Retailing this month, "Stores prepare to fight for every last customer" covers the retailers approach in the US to convert their shoppers to buyer and loyal customers.

"Glenn Murphy, chief executive of Gap, ... has a hard-nosed view of what to expect this year from US retailers, as their customers gradually emerge from last year’s slump in spending.

“It is going to be mano a mano,” he told a recent investors meeting. Success will not be “based on square footage and capital. It is based on execution, differentiation, knowing your target customer . . . and fighting for every one of them”."

Interestingly where the square footage was the measure for retailer growth now:

"Most US retailers have slowed or stopped square footage growth. Notable exceptions include those that have benefited from the frugal consumer mood. Dollar General, the discount store, is planning to add 600 out- lets to its 8,700 network, and TJX Companies, the end-of-line retailer, is increasing its square footage growth rate from 3 per cent in 2009 to 5 per cent.

In contrast, Wal-Mart, the largest US retailer, is slowing its square-footage growth rate to less than 2 per cent, compared with more than 7 per cent in 2006."

So how does this conclude?

"“They’re all saying they will win the market share fight. But they can’t all win a bigger slice of the pie,” [Emanuel Weintraub, a veteran retail consultant] says."

If you would like to read this and other articles in the World Retailing, download the complete file here.

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