STORES Magazine - February 2009 - (Page 13)

• Merchants showed a sharply increased interest in more sophisticated automation tools • For each of the past six years, approximately 1 in 4 online orders has been manually reviewed. • International orders continue to have more than three times the fraud risk of orders from the United States and Canada. Curl Up with a Good Kindle New York may have a reputation for being the city that never sleeps, but truth be told, New Yorkers love to settle in with a good book. At the Algonquin Hotel, once the stomping ground for such fabled writers as William Faulkner, Gertrude Stein and Dorothy Parker, reading a good book has just gone high-tech: the hotel is offering free loans of Amazon’s Kindle, pre-loaded with a book of the guest’s choice. The digital book service was launched in September to coincide with National Literacy Month. For guests of the Algonquin who have a hard time deciding on a good book, the Kindle comes pre-loaded with bestsellers and modern classics, as well as books written by members of the hotel’s famous Round Table, including Edna Ferber and Robert Benchley. Attack of the Taste Tests Most will recall the Coke versus Pepsi taste tests of years back. A sip of one, then a sip of the other and a winner was named. The taste-test approach to advertising is in the midst of a comeback, and this time competitors have turned up the heat. The “Dunkin’ beats Starbucks” campaign debuted in October. Shortly thereafter, Select Harvest took WWW.STORES.ORG It’s become a familiar refrain among consumers: “Do I really need this, or can I do without it — at least for now?” According to the most recent Consumer Intentions & Actions study by BIGresearch, 57 percent of nearly 9,000 consumers have become more practical and realistic in their purchases in the last six months. That’s especially true of women, who indicate a slightly stronger bent toward practicality (61 percent). Nearly three-quarters of the women polled (72 percent) say they are focusing more on what they need rather than what they want. Overall, 66 percent of adults say they have adopted a “needs” rather than “wants” spending approach. Moreover, 57 percent of women say they are more budget-conscious, and 53 percent are eating homecooked meals more often than they did six months earlier. The survey also asked respondents for the steps they’re planning to take in the next three months. The two steps cited most often were the desire to pay down debt (44 percent) and the inclination to decrease overall spending (43 percent). Consumers in the 35- to 44-year-old range – typically saddled with a mortgage and raising a young family – appear slightly more committed than other age groups to making changes. Sixty-two percent describe their spending as more practical, 69 percent are more focused on needs than wants and 56 percent consider themselves to be more budget-conscious. What does all this boil down to for retailers? Impulse buying is likely to take a back seat for the next few months – unless it’s something particularly special. Also, it appears shoppers won’t buy for the sake of buying; their purchases will be more thoughtful. They’ll be tempted to buy multiples of a sweater on the markdown rack, but where they might have purchased three a year ago, one will be more than enough in 2009. on Progresso for chicken soup bragging rights. Up next was Burger King with its “Whopper Virgins” campaign that asked Thai villagers, Transylvanian farmers and Greenland fishermen to compare Whoppers and Big Macs. The latest campaign in the taste-test series has been launched by Domino’s, which is hoping to take a bite out of Subway’s $5 ➔ STORES / FEBRUARY 2009 13 http://WWW.STORES.ORG

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of STORES Magazine - February 2009

STORES Magazine - February 2009
Executive Editor's Page
President's Page
Are You a Pusher or a Puller?
What Shoppers Think
Online Retail Satisfaction
10 Things You May Have Missed
Numbers Worth Counting
Full Price/Markdown
Retail People
Cover Story - Something’s Got to Give
First Look
Online Partners
Inventory Systems
Drug Store Systems
Business Intelligence
Inventory Managment
Online Marketing
Supply Chain - Better Data, Better Decisions
Returns Management - Identifying Fraud
Data Security - Securing Intimate Data
Anti-Shoplifting - Mall of Shame?
Risk Management - Securing Consumer Confidence
Loeb Retail letter
ARTS Update
Point of View
NRF News
Retail Crossword
Retail Industry Calendar
End Cap

STORES Magazine - February 2009