(Author : Laura McQuarrie)
For the holidays this year, British multinational retailer Marks and Spencer teamed up with housing and homelessness charity Shelter to create an immersive Christmas pop-up.

Marks and Spencer Created an Immersive Experience with Shelter

Under the protection of a red shelter-shaped installation at Waterloo, passersby have the chance to participate in a virtual reality experience that provides a look into three very different Christmas experiences.

The first two VR experiences feature real houses and real people talking about how they plan to spend the holidays, while the third depicts a homeless family barely being fit into a hostel. By helping to put people in the shoes of another, the campaign raises awareness about homelessness and the simple joys of having a place to call home. In partnership with Shelter, Marks and Spencer also made a Christmas collection, where 5% of each sale goes to the charity.

Source : trendhunter.com

(Author : Ians)
Leading Swedish home furnishings retailer IKEA will offer over 7,000 products at its first India store opening here next year, it said on Wednesday.

IKEA's first India store to offer over 7,000 products

Leading Swedish home furnishings retailer IKEA will offer over 7,000 products at its first India store opening here next year, it said on Wednesday. The product range will be affordable and will offer something for every home with almost 1,000 products priced below Rs 200, said company officials. Ahead of the store launch planned in the spring of 2018, IKEA opened its experiential centre, providing a sneak peek into its products and solutions.Designed for six months, IKEA Hej Home has come up in Forum Mall in Kukatpally near Hitec City. Officials said the products here were only for display. The customers can touch, feel and experience some of the products which will be available at the store and start preparing their wish list.

Headquartered in the Netherlands, IKEA designs and sells ready-to-assemble furniture, kitchen appliances and home accessories, and is considered to be the largest furniture retailer in the world.

The four lakh square feet store is coming up on a 13-acre site in Hitec City, the Information Technology corridor, with an investment of Rs 1,000 crore. It will create direct jobs for 800 people; half of them, the company promises, will be women. The store will also have a 1,000-seat restaurant, the largest in IKEA’s global network of over 400 stores. It will offer both Indian and Swedish cuisine.

Ulf Smedberg, Country Marketing Manager, IKEA India, said they plan to open 25 stores in India by 2025. The next store will come up in Mumbai in 2019. This will be bigger than the Hyderabad store with five lakh square feet. It has also purchased land in Bengaluru and Delhi-NCR for opening the stores. Smedberg said they were looking at both metropolitan and tier-II cities for setting up stores.

Marie Lundstrom, Creative Director, Home Furnishings, IKEA, said they were sourcing some of the products like mattresses and sofas from local suppliers to cut the cost. IKEA has been sourcing from India for the last 30 years and it plans to double its sourcing volumes by 2020 for sales at its stores in the country and also abroad. It currently has 53 suppliers in India and the number is expected to go up with the opening of more stores. Around 45,000 people work directly for IKEA suppliers in India and about 400,000 in the extended supply chain. Company officials said they were also exploring the opportunity to manufacture the products, especially in the fabrics segment.

IKEA Foundation, the company’s philanthropic arm, is currently training 100 women in retail skills in Hyderabad. John Achillea, Store Manager, IKEA Hyderabad, said the number would be increased to 300 and some of the trained women will be placed in the Hyderabad store.

Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary, Industry, Commerce and Information Technology, government of Telangana, said that the state government has given three incentives to IKEA. These include 100 per cent reimbursement for stamp duty, a discount of Rs 1 for each unit of electricity consumed for the next five years and part reimbursement for training women.

IKEA currently has 403 stores in 49 countries with a sales volume of 38.3 billion euros. About 783 million customers visited IKEA stores in FY17 and more than 2.3 billion people visited IKEA online.

Source : retail.economictimes.indiatimes.com

(Author : Justin Dallaire)
A new holiday spot suggests gifts from the retailer can transcend age groups. In its latest holiday campaign, Best Buy is positioning itself as the go-to place for the tech enthusiasts on your shopping list, no matter their age.

Best Buy draws on the happiness of giving tech

The campaign’s main spot shows a dad who has set his sights on a drone while shopping at Best Buy. He leaves having clearly developed an interest in the gadget. On Christmas morning, he mistakenly thinks his wife has purchased it for him, but is happy to learn he’ll be sharing the gift with his son, who is just as thrilled to receive it. The commercial intends to show that people’s love for tech gifts transcends age groups. According to the retailer’s own research, 55% of Canadian consumers say tech gifts are the most exciting to give during the holidays, while 66% say they are the most exciting gifts to receive.

“We know that tech gifts are going to be a winning gift at the holidays, so we wanted to say to consumers, a gift from Best Buy is going to be the perfect gift,” says James Pelletier, Best Buy’s director of marketing. For adults and tech fans of all ages, he says, the latest tech gadgets become “toys for big kids.”

“When you think of the holidays, everyone wants to get that fun toy. There’s something about giving and receiving that fun gift, that cool gift – not the functional gift or the sweater or the tie.”

The spot launched on Nov. 13 and includes TV, cinema, pre-roll and social ads. Best Buy’s internal digital team worked with Media Experts on media.

In its previous two holiday campaigns, the retailer chose not to include any products in its commercials, even though the retailer offers gifts in one of the most sought-after categories. Last year was the first time it put emphasis on the gift-giving side of the equation with an ad that suggested giving the right gift can make anyone feel like a kid on Christmas morning.

While this year’s campaign ad includes the drone, it plays a secondary role and could have been replaced by any number of products, Pelletier says. “That’s what TV does in our media mix. It’s about telling a great story, creating that emotional connection with the brand… We don’t really use television to drive individual products.”

Best Buy’s target demographic is “tech enthusiasts,” a group that includes six different consumer segments, but the brand nevertheless tries to reach all Canadians through mass marketing. Pelletier says Best Buy customers are emotionally connected to their tech and are willing to pay more for the latest gadgets, as well as good customer service.

Source : strategyonline.ca

(Author : Josh Kolm)
The athletic retailer uses thermal imaging to reward Metro riders who chose to be healthy and climb the stairs.

Sports Experts can tell if you take the easy way

Most people tend to take an escalator if given the choice, even though they know that it’s more healthy to take the stairs. But maybe a little financial incentive will get them to make the active choice?

Given that 85% of Montreal Metro transit riders don’t use the stairs, athletic retailer Sports Experts decided to place an interactive screen inside a Metro station that has over 200 steps. The screen was outfitted with thermal imaging that analyzed body heat, so it could guess who took the escalator and who put in the extra effort of sweating it out on the stairs. The screen would also print out coupons for discounts based on exactly how much each person sweat.

Upon seeing the screen, some riders went back down and up the stairs to get a better discount, but others decided to try to get their reward for other physical activities, like dropping down and doing pushups.

The execution ties in to Sports Experts’ established brand positioning, which focuses less on being performance-obsessed and more on the smaller fitness accomplishments people achieve as individuals.

Source : strategyonline.ca

(Author : Premium Beauty News with AFP)
Convenience store 7-Eleven is hoping to become the next big beauty destination, thanks to the launch of its debut cosmetics line. The chain store has unveiled a brand-new 40-piece makeup collection titled ‘Simply Me Beauty,’ designed with millennial consumers in mind.

7-Eleven launches beauty brand with impulse buys in mind

Described by the retailer as an “affordable, fashion-forward line of makeup,” the Simply Me Beauty brand covers cosmetics and accessories for the face, eyes and lips, with all items priced between US $3 and US $5. From eyeshadow palettes and highlighters to BB foundation creams and eyebrow wax, the collection is positioning itself as a catch-all beauty range for women on the go, banking on the convenience factor of shoppers being able to pick up a bronzer alongside their morning coffee. As well as the traditional mascara, lip gloss and powder compact beauty offerings, the line will also feature tools such as false eyelashes, makeup remover, nail buffers, brushes and blender sponges.

“Much of the time, makeup items like lip and eye colours are spur-of-the-moment, impulse buys,” said Joy Pico, 7-Eleven category manager, in a statement. “If the price is right, that makes it easier to justify. For a millennial working woman wanting to refresh her makeup while grabbing lunch at 7-Eleven stores, Simply Me Beauty is a welcomed offering and is priced just right for her.”

The beauty launch, which is set for the Holiday season, will see the line made available at special ‘Gorgeous on the Go’ displays established exclusively at 7-Eleven stores. The brand operates, franchises or licenses 10,900 stores across North America. 7-Eleven also has a presence in Australia, Asia and Scandinavia.

The beauty products industry is currently worth US$46 billion, and forecast to increase by 12% by 2020. Drug stores and supermarkets have 30 percent of the market, so it makes sense that 7-Eleven wants its slice of the pie, and it isn’t the only mass retailer cashing in on the potential opportunity — earlier this year the pharmacy giant Walgreens targeted younger makeup fans with the launch of a new 160-piece cosmetics collection called CYO.
In fact, a slew of new makeup lines have appeared on the scene in 2017, with everyone from online fashion retailer Asos and manicure brand Nails Inc, to Rihanna and Kim Kardashian launching own-brand beauty collections.

Source : premiumbeautynews.com

(Author :  Retail in Asia)
Spanish contemporary shoe brand Camper had a special personalisation offer for customers at its cafe at the annual Clockenflap music and art festival in Hong Kong.

Camper shoes step up at Clockenflap

International acts lined up for the three-day event, in its 10th year, including Dandy Warhols, Kaiser Chiefs, Massive Attack and The Prodigy.

Featuring brightly coloured geometric patterns and flags, the outdoor Kuuchi Cafe by Camper offered pastries and cakes as well as drinks. It had a special meal deal of two items and two beverages – as well as a DIY Camper linen shoe bag that could be personalised with colours and choice of lettering. Founded as a family business on the island of Mallorca in 1975, Camper launched as a brand in Barcelona in 1981 and has 15 stores in Hong Kong.

Camper shoes step up at Clockenflap1

Source : insideretail.hk

(Author : Ellen Smith)
A concept store in Croatia’s design district is embracing the idea of ‘slow shopping’ through offering consumers a unique in-store experience that invites them to sit back, and stay a while. 

This Concept Store is Embracing the Idea of Slow Shopping

The store was designed by the architectural firm BIRO and takes a colorful approach to interior design, with segmented rooms, each featuring a unique a vibrant color scheme. The store’s layout encourages shoppers to take their time, through offering lookbooks for one to browse through, a changing room for trying on clothes, a small bar that offers drinks and an in-house stylist that’s available for a consultation.

The concept space is filled with comfortable, strategically placed seating which invites guests to relax and embrace the idea of slow consumerism.

Source : trendhunter.com

(Author : 
Walmart is taking a bit of an nontraditional approach to boost sales ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping events by raising prices for products sold online and discounting those same items in physical retail stores.

Walmart is raising prices online to increase in-store traffic

According to The Wall Street Journal, the big-box store has quietly raised prices for household and food items such as toothbrushes, macaroni and cheese, and dog food on its website while the prices in stores remained the same. If there are price discrepancies between online and in-store purchases, Walmart will now highlight this on the product’s web listing to encourage customers to buy them from their local stores.

It’s all part of an effort to increase foot traffic as Walmart continues to compete with Amazon just about everywhere else. Both Amazon and Walmart (and its subsidiary, Jet.com) have been working on similar shopping services and experiences over the past year, such as one that allows couriers to unlock your front door to deliver packages in your home, and a grocery pickup service where customers can order goods ahead of time and drive up to retrieve their order.

With the new pricing strategy, a twin-pack of Betty Crocker Hamburger Helper costs $3.30 on Walmart.com, but goes as low as $2.50 if purchased at a store in Illinois. The aim is to also help reduce processing costs and increase online sales margins, since driving customers to stores means less shipping costs for the retailer. Shipping one box of instant macaroni and cheese from Chicago to Atlanta could cost Walmart as much as $10, reports the WSJ.

Walmart’s strategy is similar to those of Costco’s, which sells items in bulk and are cheaper to buy in stores than online. But as the WSJ points out, it’s still a peculiar strategy for Walmart. (Its slogan is “always low prices.”) While the move may help Walmart boost revenue, it doesn’t quite address how it’ll fight against Amazon for online shopping market share. With declining net income over the past two years, however, the company appears focused on trying to increase revenue overall.

Source : theverge.com

 

(Author : Ben Stevens)
The UK is set to see its first ever men’s only makeup retail store open, as MMUK Man prepares to make retail history.

MMUK Man to open UK’s first men’s makeup store

According to Global Data the men’s makeup brand, launched just five years ago, is poised to open its first bricks-and-mortar store. Its products have been available online since launch, but the brand has recently seen a boost in popularity with online fashion giant ASOS recently taking on 10 of the brands products.

“This development is indicative of a changing consumer landscape,” Global Data’s consumer analyst Lia Neophytou said.

“Male cosmetics have traditionally only appealed to small niche groups. However, driven by the individualistic mindset of the millennial consumer in particular, the male grooming industry is seeing something of a revolution.

“…The availability of male beauty products in physical stores is an emerging opportunity that beauty manufacturers worldwide should tap into and will gain traction, particularly as the social barriers to wearing cosmetics and make-up among men continue to break down.”

Source : retailgazette.co.uk

(Author : European Market Magazine)
UK retailer Morrisons is opening its online store to Amazon’s voice command software Alexa.

Morrisons Launches Amazon Alexa Voice Ordering Service

Shoppers will now be able to use their voice to order their weekly shop from Morrisons.com by using the service, as well ask Alexa to add or remove items from their basket, suggest items based on previous shops, check the total of their order and check if their delivery is on time. To access the service, customers have to activate the Alexa ‘voice skill’, which is available on devices such as the Amazon Echo, Echo Dot or Amazon Tap.

Morrison says this technology will be particularly helpful for people who are disabled or on the move. BMW recently announced that Alexa would be in its new cars from next year.

Matt Kelleher, Morrisons Online Director, said, “Customers are increasingly using voice commands in their everyday lives to check the weather, play music, or find out the latest news. It is important we follow this emerging trend and make Morrisons an easier and more accessible place to shop for groceries online. It’s exciting that our customers can now shop without even needing to login to a computer or mobile phone.”

Alexa Looks To The UK
In August, the UK online grocer Ocado implemented a similar feature to let shoppers top up their baskets using Alexa. Amazon has been encouraging online shoppers to avail of Alexa since it made over 100 exclusive deals available for Alexa users during its third-annual Prime Day sales event on 12 July. Meanwhile, Wal-Mart and Tesco have moved into voice-ordering technology by partnering with competitor Google.

However, confidence in shopping via voice command is still lacklustre with more than half of customers showing no interest in such deals, according to a survey at the time of shoppers by the bargain hunters site DealNews.com. Morrisons previously worked with Amazon last year when it rolled out the UK’s largest collection of Amazon lockers in its stores, to enable customers to pick up items bought online from its stores.

Source : esmmagazine.com