go here Looking for ways to attract shoppers in the Millennial (born 1997-1995) and Gen Z (born in 1996 and after) age categories to your store? One key way is to offer activities that will appeal to both young parents and their children.  Families are often looking for things to do together, especially on weekends. Holidays offer… Read More


http://dreamingoutloud.nl/tag/tag/page/5/ It’s always great to get together with other retailers to share ideas. At a recent roundtable in Las Vegas, several store owners mentioned that they are now offering gift wrapping service — for merchandise not purchased in their shop. With department stores no longer offering gift boxes or wrapping (not to mention online retailers that… Read More


One of my favorite quotes from a retailer about the last edition of Specialty Shop Retailing is this one: “I have read, highlighted, marked up and re-read this book so many times it groans when I pick it up!” It’s been so much fun for me to hear from shopkeepers around the world about how… Read More


The busts in front of the entrance the Merchandise Mart in Chicago are all of prominent white men who founded large retail businesses, including Frank Winfield Woolworth, Marshall Field, and Aaron Montgomery Ward.  And the three largest retailers in the world today, Walmart, Costco and Kroger’s — as well as the online giant Amazon —… Read More


More than 7.5 million retail jobs are at risk of being eliminated by automation over the next several years, according to a report by Cornerstone Capital Group for the Investor Responsibility Center Institute recently quoted in an AP article by Anne D’Innocenzio.  Some of this shift is due to changes in buying habits.  Just last… Read More


I love the opportunity that our annual inventory count gives us to get our stock organized.  We start the year by throwing away broken merchandise, marking down odds and ends, and cleaning the shelves in our storage area. This year I’ve vowed to expand that fresh-start feeling to the rest of the store.  First off,… Read More


When Dr. Maulana Karenga, professor of Africana Studies at California State University, Long Beach, CA created the holiday of Kwanzaa in 1966, he wanted a way to preserve, revitalize and promote African American culture. Each of the seven days of Kwanzaa has its own meaning, and the fourth day, Ujamaa (00-JAH-MAH) is described as “Cooperative… Read More


I was a bit discouraged to see how many of my fellow passengers were Christmas shopping on their phones as we deplaned on our trip to greet our newborn granddaughter ten days ago.  I can see how it would make sense to make use of travel time to do some online errands, but I started… Read More


This lovely gift from Royal Copenhagen is a great example of how packaging can work as an extension of your store’s identity.  For starters, the color scheme reflects the brand’s characteristic blue and white, based on the company’s signature hand-painted porcelain.  The design on the paper echoes the designs that Royal Copenhagen made famous. The… Read More


Keeping customers coming through the doors is a challenge for stores large and small.  According to a post-Black Friday Associated Press article, a JC Penney branch in NJ “was trying to make shopping in person more exciting with a DJ in the store.”  The accompanying photo implies that this attempt may not have been a… Read More