MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Study: Nordstrom is consumers’ favorite fashion retailer

BY Marianne Wilson

Boulder, Colo. — Nordstrom is North America’s overall favorite fashion retailer for the second consecutive time, according to a new study of more than 6,800 consumers conducted by Market Force Information (Market Force), a provider of customer intelligence solutions.

Kohl’s is the most visited for casual clothing, business attire and children’s clothing, while Dick’s Sporting Goods won out for sports apparel and DSW for footwear.

When Market Force asked consumers to name their overall favorite retailer, Nordstrom ranked No. 1, earning significantly more votes than all of the other chains. Kohl’s ranked second, Macy’s was third, J.C. Penney was fourth and T.J.Maxx was fifth.

Market Force also looked at why shoppers prefer one store to another and, not surprisingly, Nordstrom was also a favorite across many of the service-oriented attributes. It ranked highest for store atmosphere (64%), return policy (59%), helpful associates (56%), friendly associates (52%), knowledgeable associates (50%), and having a website that complements the store (27%).

  • Burlington Coat Factory and T.J.Maxx ranked first and second for value, while Ross and Walmart rated highest for low prices.
  • Dress Barn led for merchandise selection and also received high marks for having friendly and knowledgeable associates. Kohl’s was the winner in the loyalty program category, although no one chain seemed to really stand out in this area.
  • Kohl’s is the most popular place for consumers looking for business apparel. It earned the No. 1 ranking in the category, followed by Macy’s, J.C. Penney and Walmart.
  • In the sports apparel category, Dick’s Sporting Goods was the most visited, while Sports Authority ranked second and Kohl’s ranked third.
  • In the children’s clothing segment, Kohl’s, The Children’s Place and Target took the top three most-visited spots, followed by Walmart.
  • In the shoes category, DSW was the run-away favorite, with Kohl’s and Payless Shoes rounding out the top three.

Market Force’s study was designed to uncover which fashion retailers consumers prefer and why, as well as which stores are most popular across five clothing categories. The company first calculated the rankings based on total votes, and then factored in the number of locations for each chain for a weighted view of the results.

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FINANCE

ICSC: November sales fall short

BY Marianne Wilson

New York — Sales at U.S. chain stores were up 2.1% in November, or 3% without the effects of gasoline sales, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers. The group had predicted an increase of 3.5% to 4.5%.

“Sales were constrained by weak apparel sales this month,” said Michael P. Niemira, chief economist, ICSC. “November was a very competitive environment for retailers, and the softness in the November tally suggests some cautiousness by consumers.”

Niemira said he anticipates shoppers to return in force this month to complete the two-thirds of gift-buying they have left. The ICSC previously predicted a 3% to 4% year-over-year swell for December.

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FINANCE

Gap’s November same-store sales up 2%

BY Staff Writer

San Francisco — Gap Inc. reported its November 2013 net sales increased 8% compared with last year. Same-store sales for the period rose 2%.

Net sales for the four-week period ended November 30, 2013 were $1.63 billion, compared with net sales of $1.52 billion for the four-week period ended November 24, 2012.

“We are pleased with how we competed and delivered in November, providing a seamless experience for our customers whether they shopped in stores, online or on their mobile devices,” said Glenn Murphy, chairman and chief executive officer of Gap.

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