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January 26, 2012
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NRF SmartBrief Special Report
News for the retail industry
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Special Report Introduction 
A look back at Retail's BIG Show
NRF's 101st Annual Convention & EXPO
Last week, retailers and vendors arrived in NYC to network, learn and be inspired at NRF's 101st Annual Convention & EXPO. This year's event focused on "Retail's New Rules" -- how the industry is innovating and reinventing the rules of retail to meet the needs of today's customer.

If you missed something at this year's show, check out the roundup of Retail's BIG Show news below. A full account of Retail's BIG Blog posts can be found here.

Don't forget to save the date for Retail's BIG Show in 2013. Join us Jan. 13 to 16 in NYC for more great content and excellent networking opportunities.

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Digital and Mobile Retail 
  • Consumers consider brands over channels
    Terms such as "multi-channel" and "omni-channel" are fast becoming irrelevant, retailers heard at Retail's BIG Show last week. Shoppers don't think about "channels" in their quest to find the products they want at the best price, even when they're doing online research and checking mobiles for the best price while shopping in stores. CNBC (1/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Retailers have different takes on new technology
    Retailers have a slew of new digital technology options for improving the in-store experience, from tablets that speed the checkout process and improve customer service to face-recognition software that allows merchants to personalize offers. It's a boon for some, while others are more cautious and may even be pulling back on technology spending, analysts say. Star Tribune (Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.) (1/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • 12 reasons online shoppers click "buy"
    Human beings in effect have three brains that collaborate when it comes to decision making -- one evaluates facts and figures, the second processes emotions and gut reactions and the third is the tie-breaker between the two, Eight by Eight?s Amy Africa told attendees at Retail's BIG Show. She shares a list of 12 factors retailers can use to tailor their websites to the way our brains make buying decisions. Blog (1/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • How to benefit from the "data boom"
    Retailers today have access to a flood of valuable consumer data that comes from a wide variety of "unstructured" sources such as social media, which presents an opportunity for merchants who figure out how to harness the data and use it to create personalized shopping services, IBM's Jon Iwata said at Retail's BIG Show. Their efforts may be aided by computers like Watson, the "Jeopardy!"-winning machine that understands natural language. Retail's BIG Blog (1/16) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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Merchandising and Store Design 
  • Macy's makes existing customers No. 1
    Macy's top-down philosophy of focusing on pleasing the customers it already has, rather than living in new-customer acquisition mode, has paid off for the department store. Some 70% of U.S. households shop at the department store at least once a year, CMO Peter Sachse said during a panel at Retail's BIG Show. Retail's BIG Blog (1/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • How do you make your customers love you?
    Baker and entrepreneur Linda Hundt loves her customers, and that shines through starting with the hugs they get when they walk into her Michigan store, Sweetie-licious, Hundt told attendees at Retail's BIG Show. Hundt and Dave Ratner of Dave?s Soda and Pet City shared the many ways their small businesses have used creativity to win shoppers' love and loyalty. Retail's BIG Blog (1/16) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Marketing and Brand Management 
  • Retail's BIG Show draws record crowds
    Retail's BIG Show in New York City last week attracted about 24,000 people, a record crowd that reflects a year of solid industry growth. Retail sales rose 4.7% in 2011, according to NRF data. CNBC (1/16) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Retail CEOs stress direction, corporate culture
    Retail chief executives change jobs 30% more often than Fortune 1000 CEOs across all industries, Russell Reynolds Associates director Brenda Malloy told attendees at the closing session of Retail's BIG Show. Often, though, it's not the leader that needs to change, said Saks CEO Stephen Sadove. "Direction and culture are the two most important things that as leaders we have to focus on." Direct Marketing News (1/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Saks bets on customer-centric strategy
    Saks is in the early stages of moving toward a customer-centric retail model, starting with a database that aggregates information from all sales channels and is available to all departments across the company, marketing executive Kimberly Grabel told attendees at Retail's BIG Show. "Our early tests in marketing are getting everyone excited and we?re beginning to engage the whole company." Multichannel Merchant (1/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Retailers catch on to conscious capitalism
    A growing number of retailers are discovering they don't have to choose between profits and doing what's right, whether it's for employees, the community or the planet, Whole Foods CEO Walter Robb told attendees at Retail's BIG Show. The conscious capitalism movement lets companies grow and prosper while staying true to their values, he said. Richmond Times-Dispatch (Va.) (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
NRF News 
  • executive director shares thoughts on digital retail's "critical juncture"
    Last week's presence at Retail's BIG Show -- which featured a full track devoted to trendspotting and predictions in the digital retailing space -- found the perfect introduction in retail veteran (and current executive director) Vicki Cantrell. Cantrell shared inspiring and motivational thoughts for the hundreds of digital retailing professionals in the room, but also focused on the "critical juncture" the digital retail industry is facing today in three main areas: globalization, personalization and organization. Read more. Blog (1/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

Product announcements appearing in SmartBrief are paid advertisements and do not reflect actual NRF endorsements. The news reported in SmartBrief does not necessarily reflect the official position of NRF.
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