November 28, 2022
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Top Story
More shoppers turned out for Black Friday deals
(Gina Ferazzi/Getty Images)
Black Friday shopper traffic grew 2.9% from last year and visits to lifestyle centers, open-air malls and other non-indoor mall shopping venues was up 4.7%, according to early data from Sensormatic Solutions. "Compared to what we had the last few years, it was a real Black Friday," said Stephen Lebovitz, CEO for CBL Properties, which operates nearly 100 US malls. Retail sales for the months of November and December are expected to grow 6% to 8% over last year, according to NRF's holiday forecast.
Full Story: The Wall Street Journal (11/27),  Women's Wear Daily (11/28),  Forbes (tiered subscription model) (11/26) 
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Omnichannel Leadership Immersion Program
Cornell University has joined forces with industry executives to empower and train professionals to build high-performing customer journeys. Apply now for the 2023 program June 12-15 at the Cornell Tech campus in New York City. Space is limited.
Industry Watch
Target, Ulta, Best Buy diversify store formats, sizes
(Scott Olson/Getty Images)
From Target's plans to build larger stores with more room for online order fulfillment to Ulta Beauty's decision to shift the location of merchandise in its stores, many retailers are modernizing with a variety of new formats. Other retailers including Best Buy have also found a competitive advantage in offering a variety of store sizes at different locations, said Matthew Katz, managing partner at SSA & Company.
Full Story: Modern Retail (tiered subscription model) (11/28) 
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Dollar Tree, Family Dollar increase focus on grocery
(Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Dollar Tree and its Family Dollar banners are investing in food merchandising in response to rising food sales as more shoppers turn to budget chains to save money. Sales for Family Dollar's private brands have outshone national brands for 39 weeks in a row, according to Dollar Tree CEO and President Michael Witynski.
Full Story: Winsight Grocery Business (11/27) 
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Bargain-priced Japanese retailer Daiso Industries aims to grow its presence in the US from the 80-plus stores it operates there now to about 1,000 over time. Daiso has stores in US states including Texas and California and expects to grow by about 30 new locations in the upcoming fiscal year.
Full Story: Japan Today/Kyodo News (11/27) 
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Most Read by CMOs
How to create a product activation strategy
It is paramount that consumers encounter the same product experience everywhere they go, be it online or in store. That's why brands and retailers need a single comprehensive strategy that activates their product story across all owned and unowned channels, to grow revenue and create satisfied and loyal customers wherever they're shopping. Download the whitepaper.
Retail Trends
About 60% of retailers are tightening up their existing return policies to shore up margins, with changes including shorter return windows and fees for by-mail returns, according to a survey of retail executives. Last year consumers returned an average of 18% of goods sold during the holiday season, according to NRF data.
Full Story: CNBC (11/25) 
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Mall owners are increasingly moving away from the traditional food court and instead bringing in celebrity chefs, influencers and food halls to create destination dining experiences. "Our strategy has been to spread the food around," Jennifer Leavitt, vice-president of marketing for Bellevue Collection, said of the company's decision to place larger restaurants throughout their developments in Seattle.
Full Story: Modern Retail (tiered subscription model) (11/23) 
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Retail Technology
In-store shoppers also benefit from omnichannel
Investing in online communication like social media can help food retailers boost loyalty for in-store shoppers who spend time online even if they choose not to order groceries online, writes Grocerist CEO Jeff Anders. Owning their own omnichannel experiences, building online infrastructure to support easy shopping, and promoting government and charity program deals are also ways grocers can improve their e-commerce presence.
Full Story: Progressive Grocer (11/23) 
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NRF News
Last year, inventory shortages were the biggest concern for retailers and consumers. As a result, consumers did their holiday shopping early to ensure they got what they needed, and retailers overcorrected on stockpiling inventory to meet demand. Learn how companies like Syrup Tech, Max Retail and more are using AI predictive software and other tech to address excess inventory and simplify retail operations. Read more.
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Lovesac's founder and CEO Shawn Nelson joins the Retail Gets Real podcast to speak on his entrepreneurial development of Lovesac and the inspiration behind the brand. Nelson reflects on his career journey from creating Lovesac as a side business in his parents' basement to a company that reports more than half a billion dollars in annual sales. Hear more.
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Chain Restaurant News
Sandwich brand Cousins Subs has formed a joint venture shared-ownership deal with former NFL star Donald Driver involving six of the company's outlets in its home state of Wisconsin. Driver, who in addition to his football career is also known for winning a season of the reality TV show "Dancing with the Stars," could lift brand awareness. Driver also "will continue to offer his energy, and his ideas, which I think will be a good thing for us because it will continue to help us think big picture and where we want to go next," said CEO Christine Specht.
Full Story: QSR (11/21) 
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