REAL ESTATE

Nordstrom to close Florida Mall store

BY Marianne Wilson

Orlando, Fla. — Nordstrom announced plans to shutter its store in the Florida Mall Orlando, Florida. Originally opened in 2002, the store will close its doors on August 16, 2014.

"We never like to close a store because we create such great relationships with our customers and employees – and over the past 12 years we’ve certainly done that here at our Florida Mall store," said Jamie Nordstrom, president of stores for the company. "Our lease for the store is up. To make a long-term commitment to this community and renew our lease, we would need to make a significant investment in this store so that we’re not offering our customers a substandard experience. Despite our team’s best efforts, the store’s performance doesn’t support making that kind of investment."

Nordstrom said it remains committed to serving customers in Orlando at its Millenia Crossing Rack, one of 10 Racks in the state, and at the company’s other eight Nordstrom full-line stores in Florida.

The retailer is also opening a new full-line store at St. Johns Town Center in Jacksonville on Oct. 10 and two new Rack stores in West Palm Beach (Oct. 9) and Lake Brandon (Oct. 30).

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Sears expands Shop Your Way program

BY Marianne Wilson

Hoffman Estates, Ill. — Sears Holdings is extending its Shop Your Way membership program with a major expansion of its rewards program with the addition of more than 50 brand-name partners. Once the exclusive membership program of Sears, Kmart and Lands’ End, Shop Your Way will not include more partners in more categories.

"Members are already shopping for many of these products and services and now they can be rewarded for it," said Eric Jaffe, senior VP of Shop Your Way. "Our goal is to make it easy to earn rewards wherever you shop, and our growing partner network shows we are poised to deliver."

Shop Your Way partners include Burger King, Groupon, Avis Car Rental, Hearst Magazines, Budget, 1-800-Floers, Red Envelope, LifeLock, ScoreBig, and Shoney’s. Examples of discounts and rewards include $25-$50 in points back on services; up to 10% back in points on events and entertainment tickets; and two-percent or more in points at thousands of restaurants.

Burger King is among the partners contributing to Shop Your Way’s expanded rewards offering via the card link program: Members register their eligible Visa or MasterCard debit or credit cards one time, then automatically earn points every time they make a qualifying purchase with a participating partner.

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

The Container Store launches loyalty program nationwide

BY Marianne Wilson

Dallas — The Container Store has made POP!, its customer loyalty and engagement, available in its 66 existing stores and on its website.

“Our aim is to make POP! a simple, relevant and engaging program for our customers to help us deepen their relationship with our brand and reward them for their devotion to The Container Store,” said Melissa Reiff, president & COO of The Container Store.

Unlike traditional loyalty programs, the POP! program will provide members with custom organizing tips based on their expressed interests and past purchases to help them get started on their next organizational project. Members will be able to earn $15 POP! Perks throughout the year and will be rewarded with surprises including special offers, exclusive event invitations, product previews and more.

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