What makes a successful physical retail shop? 75% Astute Strategies & 25% Creative Concepts

What makes a successful physical retail shop?: 75% astute strategies & 25% creative concepts Without doubt the first-hand customer experience is the essential interaction that makes a physical retail shop a commercial and brand success. But as with the proverbial iceberg, there are a multitude of strategies and operational activities that go towards delivering that first-hand experience, and into making any shop, a success. And now that physical shops exist-

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If galvanising your workforce is your main objective as a retail leader, then consider this checklist…

The road to achieving a fully-functional modern retail business with an empowered workforce is not an easy one to take, or a simple one to execute. Success comes through addressing a wide variety of issues and activities. Encouragement and empathy are a good start but they will only ease the journey, not get you to the desired destination. This requires collaboration & integration throughout the business. To make the most-

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Delivering successful sustainable retail: Bringing ‘Meaning to the Retail Madness’

Retail is balancing on an unprecedented tightrope of change. Between the precipice of exploitative disaster, and the leap to sustainability and a commercially viable circular future. Where do you begin as a sustainable retailer? Opportunities are emerging for businesses of all sizes, scenarios and origins, to engage with the growing customer sentiment for products made and sold in sustainable ways. The direction is not going to change. The speed of-

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Should ‘recyclable trump recycled’ in the product design & buying lottery?

Should ‘recyclable trump recycled’ in the product design & buying lottery? Surely, as customers we must educate ourselves, and teach the businesses that make our ‘stuff’ that truly and literally ‘enough is enough’ It is correct to prioritise ‘keeping product out of landfill’ This is most important. That is why the evolution of resell, remaking, repairing, reinventing and renting is so important. The more existing products that can remain in-

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Empowering & Organising Retail People: Bringing ‘Meaning to the Retail Madness’

Retail has a chequered history of human resource management, to say the least. Sadly, some of us will still remember the aggressive cultures that used to pervade the offices of some our biggest retail businesses. Even recently, I have experienced the painful charting of an executive hierarchy, stating with precision who is more important than who. The damage that such behaviour and activities cause to the culture within a business-

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Don’t you think that beautiful shop experiences always come from the people who work there?

Don’t you think that genuine, beautiful shop experiences always come from the people who work in the shop? In other words, the most important thing in retail is people. I have always loved shop design. There is something magical in the creative impact from colour,  materials, lighting, and textures. I admire it to this day, the way that true experts in shop design bring these elements together. I have also-

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Is there another Zara? Or is it running out of ‘fast-fashion time?’

Zara is extraordinarily successful. But will it become a victim of its own success, so long as sustainability remains a victim of Zara. Zara has become the most amazingly successful fashion retailer ever. It perpetually fills its stores with new and exciting styles, that customers across the world constantly fall in love with. To achieve this, it has been incredibly clever and innovative. It has led the way in the-

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Not sure if you enjoy being sustainable? You need to get into the world of Loanhood.

In the meantime… Renting, recycling and the circular supply chain is featured in the new book – ‘Meaning in the Retail Madness – How to be an Essential Retailer’ If you’d like to read my book for many more retailer insights and best practice. And to here my thoughts on retail’s future, then that’s an excellent idea. I hope that the sections on how to flourish in the ‘The life-

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TK Maxx, making every customer’s visit into their luckiest day!

TK Maxx, making every customer’s visit into their luckiest day! The best brands make extraordinary things very simple. And the clever use of visual merchandising does not need to be complex or sophisticated to define a brand and create unique experiences. I’ve been involved recently in the research for the Channel 5 documentary about TK Maxx. The interview with one of the producers made me distill why the shopping experience-

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Just Eat, does ‘reading between the lines’ ruin your appetite?

Just Eat, does ‘reading between the lines’ ruin your appetite? With brands communicating such a ‘plethora’ of data and performance statistics, it seems transparency is not only an issue with sustainability, but with performance itself. Whilst it cannot be argued that Just Eat is narrowing its losses, marginally increasing its revenue, and increasing its sales in its UK & Irish markets, there are some concerning trends when it comes to-

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Is ‘Rental’ becoming the new ‘Must-have proposition’ for retailers struggling with customer loyalty, falling sales volumes and profits?

Is ‘Rental’ becoming the new ‘Must-have proposition’ for retailers struggling with customer loyalty, falling sales volumes and profits? What has been until recently a niche offering, largely restricted to luxury goods, and offered by specialist rental businesses, is now being adopted across different categories. It is certainly a growing trend, and what is most interesting is that traditional retailers are now looking more to offer rental in parallel to selling.-

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So, ‘clothing rental’ is only commercially viable for expensive outfits worn on posh occasions? Think again!

So, ‘clothing rental’ is only commercially viable for expensive outfits worn at posh occasions? Think again! To make clothing rental work it must be a commercial success for both the retailer and the customer. If either party loses out, then the business model will simply not work. With that in mind, perhaps you’ve been under the same delusion as I have, in thinking that the only way that clothing rental-

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Is Primark following up its sustainability claims with decisive actions?

Is Primark following up its sustainability claims with decisive actions? We have had a week where momentum against fashion retailers who are ‘greenwashing’ has been gathering pace with investigations by the CMA, and threatened legal action. So against this it is good to see a concrete commitment by one of biggest volume clothing retailers in the world. The fashion giant has announced it is to become the first retailer to feature-

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‘Selling-our-Souls’ for product salvation

‘Selling-our-Souls’ for product salvation Certainly, for those amongst us not born with a mobile in our hands, the thought of giving away our personal data and intimate thoughts and activities to brands and retailers sometimes seems quite shocking, intrusive at the very least. We spend our lives opting out of data sharing whenever we take on the latest apps, beginning any new involvement with brands and retailers on the data-

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Does ‘customer bliss’ come through ignorance or transparency?

Does ‘customer bliss’ come through ignorance or transparency? The row between Tesco & Heinz has been in the news recently. It is the same row Tesco is also having with other suppliers over the hike in supplier pricing and the knock-on effect to the retail price. Tesco has positioned itself as the customer champion, refusing for a while to sell famous Heinz products. Its claim is that whilst manufacturing costs-

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Are we finally going to see sustainability transparency in fashion retailing?

Are we finally going to see sustainability transparency in fashion retailing? Retail Week has just reported that ASOS, Boohoo and Asda george are to be investigated by the CMA, into their misleading sustainability claims. Will we get to the truth behind Greenwashing? Firstly, i have no pre-defined view or vested interest in any of these retailers being cleared or found guilty of greenwashing. I have just been an advocate of honesty and transparency-

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Bloom & Wild: Delivering a fragrant revolution

Bloom & Wild: Delivering a fragrant revolution I’d recommend that we all spoil ourselves with flowers. Not, for the hell of it, and not any flowers. Just those delivered by Bloom & Wild. Bloom & Wild are now relatively established, however it does us no harm to remind ourselves of the reasons for their success so far. Not least, because they are one of only a few pureplay retailers that have-

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Community Tesco: ‘Chatting up’ the locals

It’s not that I have ever had any bad experiences with Tesco, but I’ve never really connected with them as a brand either. I told them as much when I met them a while ago to discuss opportunities for their Tesco Express shops. Despite having the premise of being ‘local’ there really was nothing much to create or stimulate an intimate relationship other than their convenience. Which for a ‘local-

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How to think & act like a ‘Digital-first’ brand or retailer

What even is a digital-first brand or retailer? What does digital-first actually mean? In essence, it is the culture and the practice, of putting digital considerations of every kind at the forefront of strategies and operations. To be digitally-led. To be digital-first. It is the key for every business now. And it is equally essential irrespective of what your relative retail sales are from digital and physical channels. In fact-

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‘Distant’ online retailers are becoming ‘expert in selling’ but forgetting ‘how to give’

‘Distant’ online retailers are becoming ‘expert in selling’ but forgetting ‘how to give’ I am sure I am not the only one to have been disappointed and disgusted at the condition of some products that arrive on my doorstep, from online retailers. My latest experience was the receipt of some ladies coats from one of the largest online fashion specialists. A business whose strategy I have up until now admired.-

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There’s much more to successful store concepts than interior design!

Are you are planning your new ‘Shop of the Future?’ Will it be more creative, more beautiful, more engaging and more exciting than ever? Well that will largely depend on whether it will be integrated and woven, more than ever, into the strategic and operational fabric of your modern retail business. The fact is there’s much more to successful store concepts than interior design.Be aware of what really makes a-

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