What Does Brick and Mortar Have On E-Commerce?

Photo Credit: Paul Gillett via Geograph cc

Photo Credit: Paul Gillett via Geograph cc

Instant gratification for one (though Amazon is encroaching on this sacred ground with its expanding one hour delivery service). Brick and mortar can offer an experience that online shopping cannot, and this must be capitalized on if brick and mortar is to remain relevant.

“We have certainly witnessed in recent years a pronounced uptick in terms of consumers doing their shopping online and through various mobile devices and applications. That’s the trend, but does it really mean people will shop exclusively on these devices in the not-too-distant future? Are we in the final days of a major retail shopping shakeup that will eventually make department and other physical stores a thing of the past?”

Read the full article at the Washington Post. 

The Internet of Things Is Changing How We Buy and Sell

Consumers are demonstrating an increased willingness to shop in a technologically advanced way; retailers are starting to catch up.

“New research released by Cisco Consulting Services indicates that retailers who offer Internet of Things (IoT) and hyper-relevant experiences can boost profits by over 15 percent. Cisco surveyed over 1,200 consumers in the U.S. and U.K. as part of a global study that will survey 6,000 consumers in 10 countries.”

Read the full article at Retail Wire.



J.C. Penney Will Reintroduce the Mail Order Catalogue

Photo Credit: Azt3r1x via Wikimedia Commons cc

Photo Credit: Azt3r1x via Wikimedia Commons cc

J.C. Penny stopped sending out catalogues in 2010, but now sees fit to resurrect them.

“Suddenly the light went on in Plano, Texas!  J.C.Penney management now sees the need to have a print catalogue once again. After a five year hiatus the company sees the need for a catalogue that reinforces its home and home furnishing assortments.  In March the company will mail a 120 page book.”

Read the full article at Forbes.

Dollar General CEO Has Another Year to Work His Magic

He only intended to stay on if the deal with Family Dollar panned out. Now Dreiling has reversed course and opted to retain his post for another year. Why? Some analysts think there’s another deal in the offing.

“CEO of Dollar General Richard W. Dreiling was expected to retire in May of this year and only stay on longer if DG successfully won a buyout of Family Dollar Stores and then stick around to assure a successful transition. Since DG lost we should have only expected four more months under Dreiling. However, in an announcement on Jan. 22 he extended that commitment to a full year rather than just four months.”

Read the full article at Seeking Alpha.

Walmart’s New Tax Refund Service

Walmart_Pincourt_Mall_EntranceWalmart adds in store pickup of tax refunds to its list of financial services.

“‘We know tax refunds can be one of the largest financial payouts of the year for many of our customers and the last thing they want is to wait for a refund check to arrive and then spend money on unnecessary fees,’ Eckert said.

Eckert also acknowledged Wal-Mart’s business could get a boost by providing an extra ‘jingle’ to their wallets at a time of sluggish sales and customer traffic declines.”

Read the full article at CNBC.

The One Thing Missing from Your Man Cave

63bf2dd433c09db2a73ac617641bebf4_largeRemember those toddler foam blocks in the nursery? Were those not the best things ever? Build and destroy, build and destroy, tunneling, climbing, tossing. We did the most dangerous things we could think of with them. The nursery workers said no, we said YES.

That was (very many) years ago. Now Nugget Comfort Co. has a way for us to relive the fun all over again.

The Nugget is a couch made of pool noodle foam. Do I really need to say more? It’s a couch. Made of pool noodle foam.

Covered in a soft micro suede fabric, friction alone holds the pieces together (and the grip is remarkably strong). Unzip to wash the fabric in the washing machine.

Four in number, 19 pounds in combined weight, the pieces are liftable, tossable, slideable, more so than any other piece of furniture ever. I say that with confidence.

63bf2dd433c09db2a73ac617641bebf4_largeTwo mats and two triangular pillows make up the sofa. You can transform it in an instant to conform to your preferences. Reclining with your feet perched on a triangular pillow, another beneath your head; sitting with your back against a triangular pillow, the other sitting idly by; sitting with a triangular pillow under each elbow, like a sofa with arms; it is up to you. The mats can even double up over themselves: a whole new range of possibilities.

The Nugget comes in six colors, so it’s bound to suit your color scheme: orange, navy, lime, chocolate, pink, and blue.




BTunes: Instant Bluetooth Headphones

480e4683a65c1ec38dd6d65aeb69d107_largeI love listening to music. Who doesn’t? Unfortunately, traditional headphones have a fatal flaw: long cords that are endlessly becoming entangled or catching on things.

BTunes turns nearly any pair of cord-detachable headphones into Bluetooth connected headphones. Upon cable removal, insert the small, incredibly light BTunes plug into the headphones and voila, you have Bluetooth headphones. Better yet, BTunes works just like a Bluetooth earpiece. It can be used to talk on the phone hands free. And since headphones cover both ears, largely eliminating background noise, you can hear your conversations better.

BTunes-BeatsRechargeable via micro USB cord, BTunes can hold up to ten hours of charge. One of BTunes more incredible features is its ability to connect to multiple devices at once. You could watch a video on your tablet, and then receive a phone call, and then continue watching, all without pushing any buttons.

Coming off of a successful Kickstarter campaign, BTunes is now in the process of manufacturing their pieces, with plans to release them to the public in May.

Barnes & Noble Takes to Social Media to Promote the Nook

Nook owners are encouraged to read a book or two within about a month’s time and talk about it via social media, hashtag NookReadingChallenge.

“Barnes & Noble Inc. is embarking on a social media-based campaign to inspire more customers to read and promote its Nook e-reader.

The Nook Reading Challenge is a social media-based reading challenge with the goal of inspiring participants to read more and interact with their friends and the book community about what they’re currently reading, the company said.”

Read the full article at Retailing Today.

Dollar General Fails in Its Attempted Takeover of Family Dollar

Dollar General loses Family Dollar to Dollar Tree. According to Dollar General’s CEO, the real loss is to customers.

“Family Dollar shareholders overwhelmingly approved an $8.5 billion deal with Dollar Tree at a special meeting Thursday morning. Shareholders’ approval rested largely on antitrust risks associated with a potential Dollar General deal. In a statement, Dollar General CEO Rick Dreiling called the vote ‘a loss’ for Family Dollar shareholders and consumers. He said a Dollar General/Family Dollar combination would have provided a ‘better value and great selection to customers.'”

Read the full article at The Tennessean.


Walmart Canada’s 35 New Supercenters

Photo Credit: Benchapple via Wikimedia Commons cc

Photo Credit: Benchapple via Wikimedia Commons cc

Walmart thrives where rival Target could not.

“‘We love the idea of our customer coming in and buying ground turkey and taco seasoning and salad mix and diapers, getting their oil changed, picking up a pair of eyeglasses and riding home on a new bike. I mean you can get it all done at Walmart and we love the idea of that, ‘ said Shelley Broader, Walmart Canada’s president and CEO, in an interview.”

Read the full article at the Huffington Post.

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