OPERATIONS

Susser Holdings Corp. CEO appointed chairman

BY Staff Writer

Corpus Christie, Texas — Susser Holdings Corp. announced that Sam L. Susser has been appointed chairman of the board of directors of SUSS, effective immediately. He will retain his position as CEO of the company, which he has held since 1992.

Bruce W. Krysiak, the current board chairman, will become lead independent director.

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ECOMMERCE

Report: Twitter, tablets gain importance in e-commerce

BY Dan Berthiaume

Conshohocken, Pa. — Twitter and tablets are quickly rising in importance to retailers’ e-commerce efforts, while email is losing steam. According to the second quarter 2013 Monetate E-commerce Quarterly, Twitter experienced the fastest growth among all social networks in referrals to e-commerce sites, moving from 5.4% of social referrals in second quarter 2012 to 9.64% in second quarter 2013 – a 77% gain.

The numbers show Facebook is still the dominant social force in e-commerce with 61.43% of social media referrals to websites in second quarter 2013, up from 56.89% the previous year. Pinterest continues to expand its role, moving from 14.47% to 21.87% in the same interval.

In addition, mobile is expanding its device share of e-commerce traffic, moving from 15.2% in second quarter 2012 to 22.13% in second quarter 2013. Within that share, tablets represent 12.44% of mobile traffic and smartphones hold a 9.69% share. A year earlier, smartphones were slightly more popular as e-commerce devices.

Meanwhile, both referral traffic and conversion rates to e-commerce websites from email decreased since last year. Referral traffic dropped from 3.75% in the second quarter of 2012 to 2.36% in second quarter 2013, while conversions slipped from 3.56% to 3.34% in the same interval.

Interestingly, average order value from email increased during that time, from $89.43 in second quarter 2012 to $99.93 in second quarter 2013.

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REAL ESTATE

Von Maur to enter Northeast with store in upstate New York

BY Marianne Wilson

Davenport, Iowa — Von Maur Department Stores will open its first location in the Northeast, at Eastview Mall in Victor, N.Y., which is located just outside of Rochester. The two-level, 140,000-sq.-ft. store is scheduled to open on Oct. 26.

Located at the mall’s former Bon Ton location, the store underwent a complete reconstruction by local contractor LaChase Construction to achieve Von Maur’s signature exterior brick façade with arching entryways accented by a copper roof and cupolas.

Inside, open expansive floor plans accentuate Von Maur’s residential ambiance, complete with antiques, original artwork and music from the store’s grand piano. An interactive, life-sized tree in children’s is designed entertain Von Maur’s youngest shoppers while an antique pub, motorcycle and television will offer enjoyment in the Men’s areas.

"It is truly a tremendous milestone for us to break in to the Northeast and bring our unique style, service and selection to an entirely new customer base," said Jim von Maur, president of Von Maur. "Eastview Mall’s fantastic mix of retailers, loyal customers and regional appeal make it a great location to grow our brand. We are thrilled to be a part of Victor and the greater Rochester community and look forward to providing customers with our unmatched shopping experience."

Founded as a dry goods store in Davenport, Iowa, in the late 1800s, Von Maur has since grown to 27 stores and an e-commerce center. In the past two years, the company has opened two stores in Georgia, and plans to expand into Alabama and Oklahoma between November 2013 and November 2014. Eastview will mark the company’s 28th store, followed by opening at Riverchase Galleria Mall in Alabama one week later.

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