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Study predicts decline in back-to-school shopping

BY Marianne Wilson

Denver — Thirty-one percent of survey respondents said they won’t be shopping for any back-to-school products at all, up from 27.7% last year, according to research published by The Integer Group. The results were in the latest issue of “The Checkout, an ongoing shopper behavior study conducted by Integer and M/A/R/C Research.

With fewer people shopping, certain channels will see a drop in traffic. Integer predicts that mass, clothing, and drug will take the largest hit, losing 2.3%, 3.2%, and 5.5% of shoppers this year compared to last.

"The shoppers who are heading out this year plan to visit fewer channels, meaning retailers will have a harder time maintaining the same level of foot traffic as last year. Retailers will have to strive harder to get shoppers through the door by investing more in order to entice people with promotions, deals, proper communication, and incentives outside of the store," said Craig Elston, senior VP, insight & strategy at The Integer Group.

The study also shows that:

  • Only 38% of people said they would shop a month or more before school starts, compared to 45% last year.
  • Sixty-two percent said they would wait until at least two to three weeks before school starts to begin back-to-school shopping, despite planning many weeks in advance.
  • Shoppers have heightened their perceptions of private label products. This year, 38% of back-to-school shoppers are buying more private label products compared to 31% last year.

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Coupon Express appoints new CEO

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK, N.Y. — Coupon Express, Inc. has appointed Glenn Gardone as its CEO and chairman of the board.

Gardone is a consumer packaged goods sales and marketing executive with more than 20 years of experience working in all retail and wholesale channels throughout North America. Prior to joining Coupon Express, he worked at PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Kellogg and Del Monte.

"Coupon Express’ business model enables the retailer to enhance a consumer’s in store shopping experience while also offering the manufacturer the opportunity to get their branding message directly to loyal users of their products,” said Gardone. “Coupon Express has the potential to build upon its current platform and grow long term sustainable results for our shareholders. I am proud and honored to lead this organization during its next growth phase."

"Coupon Express is pleased to have Glenn lead the organization. His management capabilities and wealth of experience in retail have prepared him well to drive our business agenda for 2013 and beyond," added Alan Schor, interim CEO.

Coupon Express, Inc. provides innovative interactive customer communications systems and applications that support targeted marketing programs with unique point-of-purchase services and information that serve shoppers and distributors while building loyalty and revenue for the company’s primary clients. Through its proprietary multifunction kiosks and services, it provides in-store customized couponing, in multiple languages, for immediate impact in regional, independent retailers in the grocery and convenience store industries, enabling retailers to quickly determine ideal price-points for new products and mitigate losses from hard-to-sell items.

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Catalog Spree expands men’s section of mobile shopping app

BY CSA STAFF

LOS ALTOS, Calif. — Catalog Spree, a personal digital mall that lets consumers browse and shop their favorite catalogs, has expanded the men’s section of its mobile app to include lookbooks featuring Kenneth Cole, Original Penguin, Perry Ellis and Thomas Pink.

In addition to new brands, Catalog Spree also launched a series of themed, curated lookbooks that include "Weekend Wear," "At the Office" and "Activewear." Each themed lookbook features multiple brands to help men shop as efficiently as possible without having to leave the house, or the couch for that matter — as long as they have iPhones or iPads, that is.

Catalog Spree’s themed, multiple brand lookbooks feature top brands such as Calvin Klein, Lacoste, Nautica, Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger.

"Speaking from personal experience, between driving, parking, fighting the crowds, and searching for styles, shopping at the mall can be a frustrating experience for men. Yet online shopping is too much of a functional experience. It doesn’t offer much in terms of inspiration, browsing or discovery of new products, styles and trends," said Joaquin Ruiz, CEO of Catalog Spree. "Catalog Spree offers men the ability to go beyond the ‘search-find-buy’ mentality of online shopping and instead delivers an entertaining and engaging shopping experience."

According to the company, Catalog Spree’s custom lookbooks are developed in only a matter of hours using its all-digital publication platform, "Spree Studio." The platform allows Catalog Spree to create and publish lookbooks for nearly any e-commerce brand. Recently published lookbooks include those for Fab, Target, Toms Shoes and Urban Outfitters. In addition, Spree Studio allows retailers to publish content daily, keeping shoppers engaged.

The Catalog Spree app features more than 350 catalogs from top-tier brands including Eddie Bauer, Lands’ End, Macy’s, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and One Kings Lane and the company has plans to add hundreds more.

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