MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Meijer launches omnichannel fashion campaign

BY Dan Berthiaume

Grand Rapids, Mich. – Meijer is launching a major initiative to upgrade its fashion offerings. The omnichannel initiative includes regional advertising in national fashion magazines, the distribution of a spring Look Book, and the use of social media, including Instagram, as well as a new website, meijerstyle.com.

Meijer’s style team is led by Lynn Hempe, the retailer’s group VP of softlines, and includes her buying team and input from fashion advisor, Mariana Keros,

"Restyling our fashion offerings is not only great for our customers, who are searching for on-trend fashion items at the right price, but it also enhances the Meijer promise of a one-stop shopping experience," said Peter Whitsett, executive VP of merchandising and marketing at Meijer. "We knew our investment was sound over the holiday season when apparel realized a nearly 20% increase in sales."

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FINANCE

Stater Bros. net income soars in Q1

BY Dan Berthiaume

San Bernadino, Calif. – Stater Bros. Holdings Inc. reported a substantial increase in net income, for the first quarter of fiscal 2014. Net income more than doubled to $11.1 million from $5.4 million in the same period a year earlier. Net sales rose almost 2% to $984 million, to $968.7 million.

Same-store sales grew 1.4%. Jack H. Brown, chairman, president and CEO of Stater Bros., credited the supermarket retailer’s maintaining of a low-price market strategy during difficult economic times with boosting financial performance.

"During the extended economic downtown, we have sacrificed gross margin by not fully passing on the costs of inflation, which has allowed us to keep our prices low for our valued customers,” said Brown. “In addition, in order to continue to invest in our customers, we are constantly looking for opportunities where we can reduce our costs in areas such as improving our shrink or product loss, and improving our efficiencies at both our stores and in our distribution facility.”

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News

IBM unveils ‘Ready for Smarter Commerce’ program

BY Dan Berthiaume

White Plains, N.Y. – IBM has unveiled the ‘Ready for Smarter Commerce’ program, a new ecosystem that gives clients access to certified pre-built partner solutions with integrated cloud, mobile and social capabilities. The ecosystem features partner-led solutions built on IBM Smarter Commerce capabilities such as IBM Commerce and IBM Digital Marketing Optimization.

As part of the new ecosystem, certified partners can help extend IBM Commerce solutions by enabling customers to quickly and easily consume their solutions using IBM Commerce Composer for WebSphere Commerce. IBM Commerce Composer helps companies build and manage digital customer experiences.

IBM Commerce Composer cuts time to market by giving line of business leaders control over the look, feel and functionality of their online storefronts with no technical coding skills required. Using intuitive click-to-install templates, marketers and e-commerce leaders can quickly customize page layouts, optimize navigation and add new site functionality in minutes. IBM Commerce Composer will be available in February 2014 as part of the release of WebSphere Commerce Feature Pack 7.

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