Wayfair Enhances Mobile Messaging With Trumpit Acquisition

E-Commerce home furnishings retailer Wayfair has acquired mobile messaging application Trumpit in a move geared to expand the brand’s customer service offerings, according to a report from BostInno. Financial terms of the transaction have not been disclosed.

Wayfair has plans to utilize the technology for staff and customers, so that they can engage in group chat and exchange images and videos. As part of the acquisition, Wayfair gains access to not only the technology driving the mobile app but the team that built it as well.

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Uber Picks Up Target CMO As Marketing And Operations Converge

0ajeffjonesIt appears the C-level marketing carousel has had yet another participant jump off the ride. Nordstrom, The Home Depot, Macy’s, Kohl’s and Neiman Marcus have all had their head marketers resign from their positions in 2016, and now Target has joined their ranks.

Jeff Jones, the EVP and Chief Marketing Officer at Target, will depart the retailer effective Sept. 9 to join Uber as the company’s President of Ridesharing. In this position, Jones will be responsible for Uber’s global operations, marketing and customer support. Jones will start at Uber in October and will serve as a deputy to CEO and Co-Founder Travis Kalanick.

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Exclusive Interview: Moleskine CEO Tackles Brand Transformation

0aarrigoIn this exclusive interview with Retail TouchPoints, Moleskine CEO Arrigo Berni explains the company’s transformation, from a single branded notebook to a global retailer featuring branded boutiques and cafés.

Loyal consumers have depended on Moleskine as their go-to brand for notebooks, diaries, sketchbooks and planners since 1997. Designed based on products sold in Paris in the 19th and 20th centuries, the Moleskine brand was trademarked in 1997. By the early 2000s, sales reached $26 million; and the company was purchased by a European private equity firm in 2006. Moleskine products were sold in 22,000 stores across 95 countries by 2012; and the company went public in 2013.

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As A&F Sales Continue To Dip, Brand Repositioning Is Next Move

Abercrombie & Fitch has posted its 14th straight quarter of sales declines, leading the retailer to scale down its expectations for comparable store sales improvement in 2016.

Q2 net sales of $783.2 million were down 4.2% versus last year, with comparable sales for the quarter also down 4%. Both the Abercrombie & Fitch and Hollister brands experienced a 7% and a 2% dip in same store sales, respectively, taking the retailer back in the wrong direction after a brief improvement in 2015.

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Aéropostale’s Next Stop: Liquidation?

UPDATE: A consortium of landlords, liquidators and the licensing company Authentic Brands Group reportedly made a collective $243.3 million bid on Aéropostale, according to the Wall Street Journal. The bid would save 229 Aéropostale stores and as many as 10,000 employees.

The consortium included Simon Property Group and General Growth Properties — two mall operators serving as landlords to Aéropostale stores — as well as liquidators Gordon Brothers Retail Partners LLC and Hilco Merchant Resources LLC.

A second bidding group, made up of liquidator duo Tiger Capital Group LLC and Great American Group LLC, also has made an undisclosed offer.


 

Aéropostale, the teen retailer that initially filed for bankruptcy in May but determined it would be unable to reorganize, may be getting closer to liquidation after the company held an auction of its assets on Aug. 29.

The retailer received a confirmed bid from private equity firm and lender Sycamore Partners as well as numerous additional bids from liquidators, according to a Reuters report. It is unclear what Sycamore’s plans are for the business should the firm win the auction.

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How To Chip Away At The EMV Problem When It’s Chipping Away At Our Patience

0aHenry Helgeson CayanIt’s been just shy of one year since the October 2015 liability shift which resulted in a number of changes at the checkout counter. From credit card brands rolling out chip cards nationwide to businesses updating their payment terminals, EMV’s arrival was thought to be a welcome change in many ways (namely bringing increased security to payments). Unfortunately, it’s taking time — a long time — for this technology and transition to become a reality.

Both merchants and consumers alike express frustration with chip card transactions, the most frustrating aspect of which remains the user experience. As a recent NPR Planet Money podcast calculated, transaction approvals are painfully slow: sometimes taking up to 15 seconds for a chip card to be read, compared with the less-than-one-second swipe of a conventional magnetic stripe credit card (one of the biggest consumer complaints about the U.S. transition to EMV).

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Sling Unveils Shift Scheduling Tool For Businesses

Sling, a shift scheduling tool for non-desk employees, is designed to allow managers to organize all aspects of their work on a single platform instead of having to communicate and coordinate work with employees via email, Excel or social media group.

The platform is built around four features:

  • Shifts enables retailers to set up shift schedules, manage time off, shift trade requests and handle unexpected changes without stress;

  • Messages enables retailers to send messages and chat with employees, or share photos, videos, and links with coworkers — either individually or in groups;

  • Tasks enables retailers to create and assign tasks and get notified when they are completed. For example, managers can remind employees about upcoming deadlines; and

  • Newsfeed enables brands to post and distribute information and news to their company’s feed for all employees to see.

In its first year, Sling achieved $2.5 million in revenue, building upon the momentum of its initial $500,000 pre-seed funding. The company will utilize the funds secured to increase support efforts and greater repositories of value-added content on the platform. Within the time frame, the company added 1,500 new clients to its roster.

Experiential Retail: The Act And Art Of Millennial Shopping

0aSarahEngel DynamicAction“To the best ladies’ night ever! Thanks MatchesFashion!” The six women raised their champagne flutes on the garden rooftop and took a quick selfie, before proceeding into the SoHo loft in NYC to shop for $3,000 Chloe dresses and get their hands on the season’s hottest Aquazzura pon pon sandals. The line defining their shopping excursion versus their social outing had completely blurred, but what was evident was they were having a memorable (and brag-worthy) experience at the exclusive MatchesFashion Residency.

It is a concept brands have been attempting to get right with sports and entertainment marketing for years: becoming completely entwined in a consumer’s experience and elevating the impression of their brand, and customer spending, in the process. But in the past, that touchpoint occurred in the front row at Madison Square Garden or courtside at the AT&T Center. In order to attract and create loyalty with millennial shoppers, retailers are now flipping this concept on its head and bringing the experience directly to their customers. There are plenty of definitions out there of Experiential Retail, ranging from virtual reality to store layouts, pop-up shops to in-store cafes. But for those retailers who are truly getting it right, I’d define it as this: blending the act of shopping with the art of experience, and using data to simultaneously understand and create a sense of delight for their customers.

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Splitit Releases Platform For Interest-Free Monthly Installment Payments

0aSS Splitit ImageSplitit has released a payment tool that allows online and in-store retailers to leverage unused credit lines, by offering their customers the ability to pay in interest-free monthly installments on their existing Visa and MasterCard credit cards, with no credit check process required.

The service works as an intermediate layer between the merchant’s platform and its existing payment gateway; installment transactions are sent to Splitit, which will then relay the transaction to the existing gateway.

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