Dollar General Q3 income up 21.3%; to open 635 stores in fiscal 2013
Goodlettsville, Tenn. — Dollar General Corp. on Tuesday posted a bigger-than-expected increase in quarterly profit and total sales in line with Wall Street expectations. But the chain said it remained cautious about the rest of the year, amid heightened pricing competition and
Dollar General said it plans to open approximately 635 stores in fiscal 2013, including some 20 Dollar General Market stores and 40 Dollar General Plus stores. The company also plans to remodel or relocate a total of approximately 550 stores.
Dollar General’s net income in the quarter ended Nov. 2, rose 21.3% to $207.7 million for the quarter, up from $171.2 million in the same quarter a year earlier.
Revenue rose 10.3% to $3.96 billion from the year-earlier quarter. Same-store sales increased 4%, less than the Street expected.
Dollar General delivered another solid quarter, and we expect to continue building on our strong track record of success,” said Rick Dreiling, chairman and CEO. “We had great financial performance across key metrics.”
On a conference call, Dreiling acknowledged that the news about potential federal tax increases and spending cuts after the start of the new year appeared to be impacting customers.
"I think the customer is fatigued, they’re tired, they’re scared," he said on the call. "Every time you turn on the television, there’s a bunch of guys in suit(s) who are frowning, telling you that the world’s going to go over the fiscal cliff."
The company is seeing a more pronounced paycheck cycle, with strong sales when at times when shoppers get paychecks and a drop off at other times.
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Survey: Site search, SEO and m-commerce biggest priorities in 2013
San Jose, Calif. — Nearly half (40%) of retailers will add a mobile version of their website in 2013, with 20% planning to create a mobile app, according to the "2012 ECommerce Trends Survey,” a survey of nearly 500 global retailers conducted by SLI Systems. Retailers’ biggest challenges in e-commerce continue to be improving conversions (63%) and attracting more customers to their websites (61%), the survey revealed. As such, retailers plan to address these challenges by upgrading or changing their e-commerce platforms (18%), improving site search functionality (18%) and SEO efforts (17%) and solidifying mobile commerce strategies (15%).
Retailers took a number of actions this year in preparation for the 2012 holiday shopping season, the survey found. More than 40% increased their SEO efforts and focused on better merchandising capabilities, while better refinements and navigation (38%) and improvements to ensure more relevant site search (34%) also topped the list of holiday website enhancements.
More than half of retailers (57%) have already posted Twitter feeds to their sites, as well as articles and press releases (56%), blog posts (53%) and videos (53%). In the coming year, retailers plan to add additional non-product features to drive sales, including how-to-information, more video options and blog posts.
To download the full survey and related infographic, go to www.sli-systems.com.
Toys ‘R’ Us and Ubisoft launch social game with real-world discount
Wayne, N.J. — Ubisoft and Toys “R” Us announced that they have teamed up to create Toys “R” Us Towers, a free-to-play toy store simulation game with real-world benefits, available now on Facebook. The game will also be available on mobile devices in the coming months.
Created by Ubisoft Quebec, Toys “R” Us Towers gives players the chance to step into the shoes of the newest employee at Toys “R” Us. They will be able to manage their own toy store by building and designing a variety of toy departments and attractions, such as creating a science toy department or even adding a Ferris wheel just like the 60-foot indoor Ferris wheel featured in the Toys “R” Us international flagship store in Times Square.
As players amass experience and sales, they will progress through seven levels from trainee to store manager, all the way up to CEO. Players can get their friends involved by sharing resources and helping each other participate in weekly events or engaging in friendly competition to see who can rise to the top the fastest. Players can also choose to purchase the premium currency in the game. By playing the game, fans can receive real-world coupons for discounts redeemable at Toys “R” Us stores nationwide and on the chain’s website.
“Toys “R” Us Towers offers a unique way to receive savings at physical retail locations, and extends our brand to the social gaming community," said Michael Scharff, senior VP, new ventures, Toys “R” Us, Inc. "We’re pleased to partner with Ubisoft to engage our customers, including our more than 3.4 million Facebook fans.”
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