OPERATIONS

Parago study: Shoppers seek deals

BY Marianne Wilson

Lewisville, Texas – The hunt for the deal has grown significantly in the past year and is now a behavior consistently seen in shoppers from all demographics, according to an annual shopper study by Parago.

The report, “Let’s Make a Deal,” revealed that deal seeking is no longer just trendy or born completely out of necessity. Shoppers not only are continuing to seek out the very best prices, but are willing to go out of their way to save even a little bit.

Consumers are rapidly adopting all forms of deal seeking — especially rebates — through mobile, social and online platforms. Searching for and finding the best value is a practice now cemented in consumers’ path to purchase due to several factors: greater price sensitivity, reduced perceived spending power, advancing mobile technology and easier access to deals online and via social networks.

Key findings from the research include:

Price sensitivity is up significantly: Nearly three in four shoppers are more sensitive to price this year due in part to 42% of those surveyed feeling their purchasing power has decreased.

Deal-seeking behavior continues to grow: Before shopping, 80% of consumers look for deals, rebates and the best prices; only 69% did so in 2012.

The majority prefer rebates to instant discounts: All income levels believe rebates are easy to complete and worth the extra step for the deeper savings earned vs. instant discount offers.

Mobile deal finding jumps: This year, 46% of consumers shop where they can use their smartphones to check prices; only 11% did so last year.

Demand for deals in social networks: 57% of consumers would like access to exclusive values via social media.

“Finding deals is emotionally rewarding to consumers, as it makes them feel as though they are doing everything they can to maintain their standard of living,” said Rodney Mason, CMO of Parago, a global incentives and engagement company.

The study, Mason added, sends a clear message to marketers: Shoppers’ appetites for deals and discounts can be fulfilled in a variety of ways, especially via mobile and social as well as rebates, which consumers understand offer deeper discounts than other deals.

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Kohl’s donates $1.5m to Wis. children’s hospital

BY CSA STAFF

MENOMONEE FALLS, Wis. — Kohl’s has donated $1.5 million to Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin on behalf of Kohl’s Cares, the company’s philanthropic arm.

The money will fund the Kohl’s Cares Grow Safe & Healthy program designed to make Wisconsin kids and families aware of safety risks in and out of their homes, and the necessary steps to help avoid injury. The $1.5 million gift represents the largest corporate donation to Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin this year.

The program will educate children and their families about the leading causes of preventable childhood injuries and accidents suffered at home, including falls, poisoning, burns, choking and suffocation and drowning. The program will also address out-of-home issues, such as distracted driving and seat belt use.

“Kohl’s is proud to continue our partnership with Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin,” said Kevin Mansell, Kohl’s chairman, president and CEO. “Together, we are working to educate Wisconsin children and families about injury prevention to create a safer, healthier community.”

The Kohl’s Cares Grow Safe & Healthy program will present age-relevant information to remind Wisconsin families that injury prevention is important at all ages. The mobile tour, which will launch at ChocolateFest in Burlington, Wis., May 24, will bring educational kiosks to family-friendly fairs and festivals throughout the year in southeastern Wisconsin. Additionally, USBs will be handed out at event stops, allowing families to go online for additional information about injury prevention. Kiosks will also be placed at seven locations in the greater Milwaukee area, and the interactive programming will be available as a free mobile phone application.

“With Kohl’s generous $1.5 million donation, we are honored to continue our long-standing partnership and joint commitment to the Milwaukee community,” said Bridget Clementi, director of community health, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. “Our work together allows us to develop fun and educational programs for the kids and families in our area.”

The donation is funded through the Kohl’s Cares cause merchandise program, which sells special merchandise, including plush toys and books, and donates 100% of the net profit to benefit children’s health and education initiatives nationwide. Since 2000, Kohl’s and Kohl’s Cares have combined to give more than $55 million to support charitable initiatives in the metro-Milwaukee area, including more than $8.3 million to Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin to help improve the health and safety of Wisconsin children. To date, the Kohl’s Cares cause merchandise program has raised more than $231 million for children’s initiatives nationwide.

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Dick’s Q1 falls short of Street expectations

BY CSA STAFF

PITTSBURGH — Although Dick’s Sporting Goods reported a year-over-year increase in revenues for first quarter 2013, performance still fell short of Wall Street expectations.

The sporting goods retailer reported first quarter revenues of $1.33 billion, a 4% increase from $1.28 billion. However, analysts expected revenues for the quarter to total $1.36 billion.

Net income grew 13%, from $57.2 million to $64.8 million.

“In the first quarter, we generated earnings in line with our original guidance, but were not pleased with our sales results, which came in below our expectations,” said Edward W. Stack, chairman and CEO.

Stack said Dick’s will focus on store remodeling, tighter inventory management and closer cooperation with golf vendors to boost near-term performance.

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