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Read the Case Study “OmniChannel Strategies of Top Retailers” on page 161-162 of your textbook. In a two-page essay discuss the convergence of E-Commerce and brick-and-mortar retail. What are the keys to succeeding with an omnichannel strategy; provide examples of how the companies mentioned in the Case Study are adapting their location strategies to remain competitive in the changing retail marketplace. Your essay should relate to concepts discussed in your textbook, as well as other scholarly resources.

Case Study From Textbook:

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Case 3 Omnichannel Strategies of Top Retailers*

  • Based on material from David P. Schulz, “The Future Is Now,” STORES Magazine, July 2015, pp. 54–56, 58. Reprinted by permission. Copyright 2016. STORES Magazine.

It’s no longer bricks-and-mortar versus E-commerce—omnichannel is the path to success. Consumers have myriad ways to shop, and retailers must keep up. “New [technology] tools transform the way consumers want to shop,” says Anne Zybowski, a vice-president at Kantar Retail. In response, retailers are re-thinking operations, from infrastructure and inventory systems to delivery and marketing. As measured by STORES’ annual “Top 100 Retailers” report, by Kantar, the evolution of retailing displays the survival skills of long-time firms. Chart-topping stalwarts—Walmart, Kroger, Costco, Home Depot, Target, Walgreen, and CVS—have maintained dominance by meeting consumers’ changing desires, including for online shopping and digital interaction. Amazon’s ascent continues, and although E-commerce has not proven to knock bricks-and-mortar off its pedestal, the old “location, location, location” mantra doesn’t carry the same weight that it once did. Instead, the two channels continue to converge: Store operators are seeing much digital success, whereas online merchants—including Amazon—are expanding with showrooms, pop-up shops, and other ways of meeting shoppers face-to-face.“Omnichannel remains aspirational. Today’s omni-shoppers know what they want,” Zybowski says, “retailers to offer whatever, wherever, whenever they want. When it comes to value, they want [to have] their cake and eat it too—they don’t expect to pay more for convenience.” The challenge is meeting consumers’ reset expectations. “Retailers must learn how to fundamentally transform their business models, ones built for maximum efficiency and scale, and transform them into more nimble, effective ones,” Zybowski adds. Tom Cole, of Kurt Salmon Associates, says mobile is key in omnichannel’s push to seamless consumer experiences, although the mobile transactions’ volume is still low. Retailers need to build to omnichannel via legacy systems already in place. “Omnichannel” is the new reality whether they engage or not. If you’re available where and when consumers look for you, great. If not, you lose to someone who is,” says Marge Laney, of Alert Technologies. “Online-only retailers lack the high engagement that the in-store experience can deliver. Offline-only retailers don’t deliver the comfortable experience that consumers utilize to make their shopping itineraries.Digital is the connective tissue between online and in-store,” says Claude de Jocas, intelligence group director for L2. “Stores have been cast as a liability in an Amazon era, but they’ve been making a comeback as something that’s critical to a retail strategy.” Nordstrom is advanced in all facets of its omnichannel approach. The retailer has nearly 1 million followers who can shop via Instagram; its network of fulfillment centers is growing. Nordstrom has also launched a “scan-and-shop” feature within its catalog app that links readers of the print catalog to E- and M-commerce sites. “We hope that scan and shop creates a more seamless shopping experience for our customers who enjoy browsing our catalogs but also enjoy the many benefits technology affords the experience to make it more personal,” says spokesman Dan Evans, Jr.

Nordstrom is also connecting with teen shoppers via digital mall Wanelo; and in spring 2015, it unveiled a test of a “click-and-collect” service that included curbside pickup. This complements a more traditional buy online, pick up in-store program that Nordstrom has had since 2008. A third service, TextStyle, was launched in late May 2015 and involves all of Nordstrom’s full-line stores; it allows customers to make purchases from their personal stylist or sales associate using text messages.

MKT 222: Case Study Guidelines and Rubric

Overview: There are three graded case studies in this course. All are designed to allow you to apply retail marketing skills to a real-world situation. Detailed instructions for each case study assignment are provided in each respective module. Summaries of the case studies are as follows:

• The Convenience Economy Comes of Age (Module Three)

The first case study allows you to apply knowledge you have gained about building relationships and strategic planning in retailing. In this case study, you will be discussing the pros and cons of the “Convenience Economy” to retailers. Additionally, you will conduct research and provide real-world examples of retailers that have become more convenient-focused in recent years to adapt to changing consumer behaviors.

• OmniChannel Strategies of Top Retailers (Module Four)

This case study allows you to apply knowledge you have gained about retail site location strategies by discussing the convergence of E-Commerce and brick-and-mortar retail. You will investigate how companies are adapting their location strategies to remain competitive in the changing retail marketplace.

• Enhancing the In-Store Experience Through Facial Recognition Software (Module Six)

This case study allows you to apply merchandise planning and management concepts learned throughout the module. You will discuss how the technologies mentioned in this case study aid retail buyers, merchandisers, and marketers in merchandise planning objectives to better manage the in-store experience.

Requirements of Submission: The case studies must follow these guidelines: approximately two pages in length, double spaced, 2-point Times New Roman font, one-inch margins, and APA-style citations.

Critical Elements Exemplary (100%) Proficient (85%) Needs Improvement (55%) Not Evident (0%) Value

Main Elements Includes all of the main elements and requirements and cites multiple examples to illustrate each element

Includes most of the main elements and requirements and cites many examples to illustrate each element

Includes some of the main elements and requirements

Does not include any of the main elements and requirements

30

Inquiry and Analysis Provides in-depth analysis that demonstrates complete understanding of multiple concepts

Provides in-depth analysis that demonstrates complete understanding of some concepts

Provides in-depth analysis that demonstrates complete understanding of minimal concepts

Does not provide in-depth analysis

20

Critical Thinking Draws insightful conclusions that

are thoroughly defended with evidence and examples

Draws informed conclusions that are justified with evidence

Draws logical conclusions

but does not defend with evidence

Does not draw logical conclusions

20

Research Incorporates many scholarly resources effectively that reflect depth and breadth of research

Incorporates some scholarly resources effectively that reflect depth and breadth of research

Incorporates very few scholarly resources that reflect depth and breadth of research

Does not incorporate scholarly resources that reflect depth and breadth of research

20

Writing (Mechanics/ Citations)

No errors related to organization, grammar and style, and citations

Minor errors related to organization, grammar and style, and citations

Some errors related to organization, grammar and style, and citations

Major errors related to organization, grammar and style, and citations

10

Total 100%

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