Dick’s Sporting Goods in store openings
Dick's Sporting Goods will be busy in August, opening five stores in three different states.
The nation's largest sporting goods retailer will open two namesake stores and three Field & Stream stores in the first half of August. In Prosper, Texas, Dick's and Field & Stream will open under one roof at the Gates of Prosper. And in Houston, Dick's will open at Post Oak Shopping Center.
In other August openings, Field & Stream open at Cox Creek Shopping Center in Florence, Alabama, and at Town Center Commons, Kennesaw, Georgia.
With the grand opening of these new stores, Dick's will have 704 locations and 32 Field & Stream locations.
Retail jobs dip slightly in July
The retail industry lost jobs in July.
Retail industry employment declined slightly in July, decreasing 1,700 jobs from June, according to the National Retail Federation. On a three-month average, retail jobs have decreased by 4,200 jobs as calculated by NRF. (The numbers exclude automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants.) On a positive note, the economy overall saw gains of 209,000 jobs in July, exceeding growth expectations for the month.
“Overall job and wage growth are positive indicators for the retail industry since it means consumers have more money to spend when they come into stores or shop online,” said NRF chief economist Jack Kleinhenz. “With back-to-school shopping ramping up and the holiday season just around the corner, retailers will only be busier in the weeks and months ahead.”
While the sporting goods sector saw decreased employment in July, department stores, building materials and supply stores, and health and personal care stores all saw job gains. Department store employment has increased for the past two months, with June and July gaining a combined total of 6,000 jobs.
Kleinhenz noted that retail job numbers reported by the Labor Department don’t paint an entirely accurate picture of the industry because they count only employees who work in stores while excluding retail workers in other parts of the business like corporate headquarters, distribution centers, call centers and innovation labs.
Economy-wide, average hourly earnings in July grew 2.5% year-over-year, keeping pace with the increase in June.
Study: Even mature retailers miss the mark on unified commerce
Despite retailers’ efforts to deliver sophisticated shopping experiences, crucial gaps between digital and in-store touchpoints still exist.
That's according to “The State of Omnichannel Commerce: A Mystery Shopping Study.” The report, from Kibo, assessed the personalization and omnichannel sophistication across 30 popular and growing retailers’ desktop, mobile and in-store buying touchpoints.
While retailers are making progress in their journey toward an omnichannel reality, there are still several gaps across even the most mature companies. Among the areas that are in need of improvement include fulfillment and inventory, personalization, pricing consistency and in-store signage.
When it comes to fulfillment and inventory, 87% of retailers provided a product locator on their website, yet only 35% displayed quantity of inventory available. A majority (97%) of store associates could access inventory levels.
Of these associates, 66% had to be at a terminal behind the counter, and only one-third utilized handheld or mobile technology to provide a seamless experience. While 24% could locate inventory, they could not place the order for the shopper, data revealed.
Seventy percent (70%) of personalized experiences were successful on an e-commerce site only when the shopper was logged into an account.
Meanwhile, four in 10 retailers did not send an email following an abandoned cart. Of those retailers that did send an email, none offered an incentive to purchase. And four in 10 retailers did not display recently visited items on a website upon a consumer’s return visit.
When analyzing pricing consistency, 16% of retailers had inconsistent pricing between the store and their e-commerce site.
And although a majority of retailers had signage promoting omnichannel offerings and guiding in-store foot traffic, 37% are missing the opportunity to streamline the in-store shopping experience with basic communication, according to data.
"This year, we have identified crucial gaps across digital and in-store buying touchpoints that can significantly improve the shopping experience," said Tushar Patel, chief marketing officer, Kibo. "These include some of the basics: personalization for all shoppers — known and unknown — with more relevant recommendations and promotions, and allowing access to inventory information across the entire buying journey with the ability to place an order efficiently."
Patel added that retailers that close these gaps will be the winners of tomorrow’s retail industry, while those who do not take action will risk long-term sales growth and customer loyalty.