Retailers post strong January sales

WASHINGTON — Omicron, inflation and bad weather in much of the country were not enough to stop consumers from shopping in January, according to figures from the Census Bureau and the National Retail Federation (NRF). Retail sales posted strong gains in January despite those and other challenges. “January’s numbers show that 2022 is starting very

Retailers put spotlight on sustainability

Retailers put spotlight on sustainability

Consumers care more about sustainability than retailers think they do, a new report suggests. But that doesn’t mean that retailers are ignoring the issue. First Insight conducted a study, in partnership with the Baker Retailing Center at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, that polled both consumers and retail executives. It found that

Tomorrow’s merchants must be conductors, not specialists

To meet consumer needs, retailers must go beyond functional over-specialization, freeing merchants to see a bigger picture. Consumers, we all know, want a frictionless experience across all touchpoints. They’re increasingly intolerant of out-of-stocks. They’ve become empowered, thanks to revolutions driven by digital technologies and the COVID-19 pandemic. Retailers, we all know, must become even more

Retailers applaud stimulus package

WASHINGTON — Retailers welcomed the passage of the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan signed into law by President Biden on March 11, paving the way for the first wave of $1,400 coronavirus stimulus payments to millions of Americans. Retailers also applauded language in the legislation aimed at accelerating the pace at which Americans are vaccinated

COVID-19 crisis puts retailers to the test

For retail companies that sell essential merchandise and remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic, the crisis has created new exigencies that are testing their mettle. With consumer preferences and shopping patterns undergoing sudden and dramatic shifts, stores have had to scramble to meet unprecedented demand, while at the same time doing everything they can to

Pandemic hits retail on multiple fronts

NEW YORK — The coronavirus pandemic is disrupting the retail industry on multiple fronts. As the disease began to spread in the United States and globally earlier this month, retailers had to deal with interrupted supply chains, sick employees, empty shelves and the possibility that consumer spending in retail stores will plummet as containment efforts