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Morrisons taps Galleria Retail to automate merchandising processes

BY Staff Writer

Chicago — Galleria Retail Technology Solutions, a provider of retail and category optimization solutions, announced that Morrisons, the United Kingdom’s fourth largest food retailer, will utilize its complete product suite to automate its merchandising strategy.

A Galleria customer since 2008, Morrisons will continue to use Galleria’s customer-centric merchandising dolution and will also implement the supplier’s Intelligent Store Optimization, Behavioural Cluster Planning, Store Operations Workbench and Galleria Foundation Services in more than 400 stores across the United Kingdom.

“With more than 11.5 million shoppers each week, our goal is to optimize our selling space in every store and ensure that we have an appropriate assortment to meet our individual customer needs” said Andrew Plews, head of trading systems development controller at Morrisons, which operates more than 470 supermarkets. “Galleria offers us a complete, single-source solution to automate our merchandising processes across both macro- and micro-space planning in support of our objectives.”

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OPERATIONS

Pharmacists ranked in top three in Gallup’s annual Honest and Ethics survey

BY Staff Writer

Alexandria, Va. – The results of Gallup’s annual Honesty and Ethics survey reveal that pharmacists have ranked in the top three for the ninth consecutive year. In this year’s survey, pharmacists ranked second to nurses and ahead of doctors, moving up one place from last year’s survey. Among respondents, 73% rated the honesty and ethical standards of pharmacists as “very high” or “high.”

The survey measures the public’s trust of professionals across diverse disciplines, including but not limited to health care.

“The Gallup survey reflects the unsurpassed value of community pharmacy in improving patient health and reducing healthcare costs across the board,” said National Association of Chain Drug Stores president and CEO Steven C. Anderson, IOM, CAE. “As the face of neighborhood healthcare, pharmacists are accessible healthcare providers, with nearly all Americans living within five miles of a community pharmacy.”

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Value-add, Valu-text

BY Katherine Boccaccio

A few days and about 15 meetings later, I am brimming with updates and stories from the annual International Council of Shopping Centers’ New York Deal-Making Convention in New York City.

Interestingly, my very first face-to-face sitdown at the Dec. 5-6 show delivered the biggest innovation of the two-day event.

I met with Marty Richmond, VP of marketing and corporate communications for Beachwood, Ohio-based DDR, who introduced me to the company’s newly unveiled ValuText program, a location-based mobile marketing service.

Sounds like something you’ve seen before? Not really. This program is TEXT-based, and allows DDR shopping center tenants to connect directly with shoppers via an opt-in, promotion-based platform.

In lay terms, this is how it works. A shopper pulls up to a DDR open-air shopping center – 27 centers are currently using the program, with plans to roll it out to as many as 150 DDR properties around the country – and will see signage suggesting that he or she join ValuText right away. (To opt in, a shopper texts a code to a pre-set number.) Once joined, the shopper will begin receiving offers and discounts via text from participating merchants in the center.

Here’s the most important point: Once the shopper drives away from the center, all promotional texts cease. Because the program is location-based, notifications are triggered by proximity to the property.

DDR does not charge a fee for ValuText; it is a value-added service that the landlord provides its tenants gratis. And the service is also free for shoppers, making it a win-win for everyone.

What I like most about it is that the program should serve to round out the shopping experience. Because the DDR centers currently using the program are mostly strip and power centers, many shoppers have a tendency to run in and out of their favorite stores, passing adjacent storefronts by. Texted offers could very well create some serious cross-shopping opportunities.

I will be watching this program with interest. I suspect it will be a hit with retailers and certainly with their customers.

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