Retailers delivered this holiday season
The majority of retailers managed to keep their shipping promises this holiday.
That’s according to Kurt Salmon’s annual Holiday Shipping study, which found that 97% of retailers successfully processed and delivered orders to customers on their last guaranteed shipping date before Christmas. according to Kurt Salmon’s (part of Accenture Strategy) annual Holiday Shipping study. This compares to 87% in 2014 and 95% in 2015.
On a less positive note, the analysis also found that at least 20% of retailers moved forward their deadline, or dropped the ‘guaranteed’ from the delivery promise due to last minute weather and capacity concerns. The overall high success rate shows that the conservative approach allowed retailers and carriers to be successful in a very challenging environment.
The study measured the ability of 32 retailers across a broad range of categories to fulfil customer orders on their last guaranteed shipping date before Christmas. Key findings include:
• The top three retailers were all luxury brands. Saks Fifth Avenue allowed for orders on the 23rd, and Coach and Nordstrom allowed customers to order up until the 22nd with standard shipping and still receive their orders by Christmas. Shipping was free for all these retailers.
• At least 15% of retailers moved their last ship date forward in the weeks leading up to Christmas, which was the first time that the study had captured this in action.
• The year 2016 was the first time since the study began that the average ship date actually got earlier (20th in 2016 versus the 21st in 2015).
• Retailers who had enabled the omnichannel functionality of ‘Buy Online Pick Up in Store’ (BOPUS) actually allowed for last minute shoppers to order up until 6pm on Christmas Eve and pick up their items in the store that night.
• Many retailers refined their messaging in the week leading up to Christmas to drive this service, allowing for last minute sales to be captured without the risk of weather or an overloaded carrier network to lead to broken promises on Christmas.
“While customers may have been surprised by the movement in the guaranteed last shipping date, retailers cautiousness paid off with a higher success rate, leaving no one empty handed on Christmas morning,” said Steve Osburn, managing director at Kurt Salmon, part of Accenture Strategy. “With online sales continuing to rise, retailers have to ensure they are operationally competent to deliver on time, they have the ability to change direction at a moment’s notice, and offer flexible delivery alternatives such as ‘buy online, pick-up in-store’, or risk customer disappointment which can be damaging to even the most loyal relationships.”
I can speak from personal experience in regards to Express Clothing and their failure to meet shipping demand this holiday season. They had some decent sales this Cyber Monday and the delivery of items took far too long to reach customers. A 2-day shipping order took 2 weeks and several false promises. I would be curious to know how many customers were affected by this lack of follow through.
FTC expected to rule on Walgreens-Rite Aid merger before Trump takes office
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission will rule on the Walgreens Boots Alliance-Rite Aid merger before the Trump Administration takes office on Jan. 20, according to the New York Post. The newspaper added approval of the transaction is “not guaranteed.”
“It is most likely [FTC] Chairwoman Edith Ramirez addresses it before she leaves,” a source close to the situation told the news outlet, and not leave it to a Republican-led FTC.
A Walgreens-Rite Aid merger would create the country’s largest drug store chain. The proposed move was first announced in October 2015.
Among the reasons why the FTC would consider blocking the deal would be a question of if “Fred’s is too small to replace Rite Aid in markets where Walgreens and Rite Aid are the only drugstore chains,” the Post reported.
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Downtown Detroit mixed-use property opens
The comeback of downtown Detroit, led by the expansive District Detroit project under construction, was advanced this week with the opening of The Scott at Brush Park. The upscale, mixed-use development of Broder & Sachse Real Estate and Sachse Construction is located about eight blocks north of District Detroit on Woodward Avenue.
A project undertaken by the Ilitch family, owners of the Little Caesars pizza chain, District Detroit will consist of five “neighborhoods,” as well as a new arena to host the National Hockey League’s Detroit Red Wings.
The Scott contains 199 residential units and will house five retail and restaurant tenants. The Carter-Snell Skin Center is the first retail tenant to be named.
“We knew this was an ambitious undertaking when we started construction in the summer of 2015, but we felt the reward would outweigh the risks,” Sachse Construction CEO Todd Sachse said. “Downtown Detroit, and Brush Park in particular, has incredible traction right now in terms of development and revitalization efforts. We are proud to be pioneers in Brush Park and to have The Scott as one of our team’s great successes for 2016.”
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