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Period: August 15, 2016 to September 1, 2016
Comment & Opinion or Companies, Organizations or Consumers or Controversies & Disputes or Deals, M&A, JVs, Licensing or Earnings Release or Finance, Economics, Tax or Innovation & New Ideas or Legal, Legislation, Regulation, Policy or Market News or Marketing & Advertising or Other or People & Personalities or Press Release or Products & Brands or Research, Studies, Advice or Supply Chain or Trends

Spending Trends Make Some Retail Sectors Skittish

Retail sales in the U.S. were sluggish in July, especially among clothing and electronic goods vendors, where shopping is shifting from brick-and-mortar stores to the Internet. It’s not because American consumers aren’t spending. After all, unemployment is down, income is up, and energy prices remain low. U.S. households have increased spending every quarter since the end of 2009. But there has been a shift in where Americans spend, toward entertainment, travel and healthcare -- and online. The experts don’t seem alarmed. One economist said the news signals “a pause in a good pace of spending”, while a global forecaster expects a 2.6 percent gain in gross domestic product this quarter over a year earlier. Still some sectors have reason to be nervous: consumer spending is falling at sporting goods stores, food and beverage stores, restaurants and bars.

"Where We Spend Is Upending Traditional Retail", The Wall Street Journal, August 12, 2016

Snack Maker Associates Brand With Kindness In New Mobile Marketing Ploy

Kind Snacks is trying a new mobile marketing strategy that links "kindness" with a snack bar reward. The strategy allows Kind to reach more mobile users while putting the brand in a positive light. Consumers show their appreciation for family and friends by sending an ecard via Facebook, Twitter or email. The family member then enters an email address – or Twitter username or Facebook name – to claim a free Kind granola snack bar. Recipients can claim their reward within seconds and then participate themselves in the “pass it on” campaign. The gimmick is just one of a number of ways CPG marketers are boosting mobile engagement while getting the word out on their products.

"Kind Snacks Unpacks Brand Awareness Via Mobile-Driven Product Giveaway", Mobile Marketer, August 15, 2016

Supermarkets Turn To “Experiential Retailing” To Grow Market Share

Though 25 percent of U.S. grocery shoppers say they are spending more at supermarkets, Mintel data show otherwise. Consumers are actually more likely to shop for groceries at other channels, like mass merchandisers, warehouse clubs and drug stores. Nearly two in five consumers shop secondarily at Walmart, the highest retailer “also shopped” for groceries. Total U.S. multi-outlet sales of groceries will rise 2.5 percent this year to $652 billion, but supermarket sales will grow only 1.9 percent to $317.8 billion. The result? To compete, grocers are turning to innovation and experiential retailing to hold onto or grow market share. For example, ShopRite in Morristown, N.J., offers an in-store restaurant, juice bar, oyster bar and a daycare center for shoppers with children. A store in Hanover Township (N.Y.) includes a fitness studio and a cosmetologist on weekends.

"US Grocery Stores Struggle To Keep Up", Blog entry, Mintel, August 15, 2016

India's Online Retail Market Expected To Keep Growing, Report Says

Retail ecommerce sales in India will grow 75.8 percent to $23.39 billion in 2016, compared with 2015, according to eMarketer. Data from the market research firm’s report, “India Retail Ecommerce 2016: The Relentless Rise in Mobile Sales,” predicts strong growth during the next few years, with sales reaching $79.41 billion in 2020. Online sales, however, will account for only 2.5 percent of total retail sales in 2016, rising to 5.0 percent in 2020. Retail ecommerce growth is forecast to be driven by mobile, which will account for $15.27 billion in 2016 sales, an increase of 96.3 percent from 2015. Indian consumers’ growing adoption of smartphones is driving growth in mobile ecommerce.

"India's Retail Ecommerce Sector Is Small but Still Growing", eMarketer, August 15, 2016

Australian Online Produce Firm Expands With More Items, Free Delivery

An Australian online retailer that once specialized in fresh produce has launched what it calls The General Store, an expanded grocery store with free delivery service that requires no minimum purchase. Aussie Farmers Direct, which began 11 years ago as a source of fresh produce, now offers 170 Australian-sourced fruit and vegetables, dairy, bread, deli items, meat, chicken, seafood, pasta and fresh gourmet meals. The new delivery program puts the company in direct competition with big online grocery marketers like Coles and Woolworths, providing an alternative for shoppers and for food producers looking for a new sales channel.

"Aussie Farmers Direct Takes on Coles and Woolies with Online Grocer The General Store", Smart Company, August 16, 2016

Lidl Builds Expanded IT And Data Hub

Discount retailer Lidl plans to upgrade its warehouse data and install new IT tools in order to improve market and consumer insight. By building a new data hub, which involves the rollout of an integrated business intelligence system combining a Teradata data warehouse structure DWH 4.0 with SAP and Business Warehouse module, Lidl aims to be able to perform Big Data analysis. Lidl’s move to the Hana platform will enable Lidl to assess huge volumes of data from the SAP ERP system. Also, the data hub will include BI tools and Big Data tools from MicroStrategy, SAS, Ab Initio, and Hadoop.

"LIDL Investing In Robust Data", Retail Analysis, August 16, 2016

Carolina Herrera Launches Good Girl Perfume With Campaign Daring Girls To Be Bad

Carolina Herrera introduced its Good Girl brand of perfume by launching a campaign featuring fashion model Karlie Kloss. As part of the campaign, Kloss appears on a video portraying a Good Girl as somebody who does not feel guilty for “disturbances” caused by her appearance. Also, a website features additional information about the brand.

"Carolina Herrera Fragrance Effort Dares Good Girls To Try Bad Decisions", Luxury Daily, August 16, 2016

Walmart’s Stellar Online Sales Quarter Also Saw A Rise In Store Traffic

After several years, and billions of dollars in investment, Walmart is finally reporting an upbeat online sales picture. Second-quarter (ending July 31) online sales leapt 11.8 percent, after nine quarters of sluggishness. The encouraging sales report, observers say, was due to a mix of factors, including the roll-out of its Walmart Pay mobile app, expansion of free grocery pickup for online orders, and the launch of an Amazon Prime-like subscription service. But perhaps most encouraging was the fact that Walmart succeeded in boosting store traffic –  up 1.2 percent – while increasing online buying. The results prove the company’s strategic axiom: digital sales and store sales must be symbiotic.

"Here's How Walmart Is Reigniting Its E-Commerce Growth", Fortune, August 18, 2016

Charlotte Tilbury Launches Fragrance With Virtual Reality Experience Featuring Kate Moss

Makeup artist Charlotte Tilbury launched a virtual-reality-enabled marketing campaign to promote the launch of her first fragrance, Scent of a Dream. Featuring supermodel Kate Moss, the VR campaign was created in partnership with content production studio Happy Finish and film director Antoine Wagner. Reportedly the first of its kind, the campaign was shot using the Nokia OZO VR camera.

"Charlotte Tilbury Launches World's First 360° Virtual Reality Experience Starring Kate Moss", Little Black Book, August 19, 2016

Seafood Quick-Service Chain’s Mobile Campaign Explains Sustainability Efforts

Fast-seafood chain Long John Silver’s has launched a social responsibility mobile ad campaign with a video on sustainability that highlights its primary menu items – 100 percent wild-caught Alaskan pollock and cod – and tells viewers about its continuous monitoring of Northern Pacific waters. Fishing quotas for the two fish species are regularly adjusted to ensure the species’ strength and survival. The two-minute video was filmed in Alaska and features narration alongside clips showing the state’s Pacific shores. Other videos in the campaign appearing on Vine, YouTube and Facebook, will discuss family and food quality.

"Long John Silver’s Highlights Corporate Sustainability With Snackable Mobile Videos", Mobile Marketer, August 19, 2016

India’s Food Safety Regulator Announces Initiatives To Promote Safe Food

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India has unveiled a set of initiatives to promote safe food in a variety of venues. The ten initiatives, launched on the anniversary of the Food Safety and Standards Act of 2006, will target homes, schools, offices, trains and railway stations, restaurants and religious facilities. FSSAI, for example, will provide a comprehensive guide to households and create a dedicated website for safe and nutritious food at home. It will  prepare a list of high fat, sugary and salty junk foods to ensure food safety and nutrition in schools. And it will require businesses that provide mid-day meals to be licensed by the FSSAI.

"FSSAI Announces Initiatives to Promote Safe Food Culture", The Economic Times, August 23, 2016

Walgreens Balance Rewards Loyalty Program Embraces Android Pay

Walgreens added the Android Pay mobile payment platform to its Walgreens Balance Rewards customer loyalty program. Aimed at accommodating program members who own non-iOS mobile devices, the integration will allow Android smartphone users to also enjoy “more seamless checkout experiences” previously available only to iPhone users. Benefits offered by Balance Rewards include faster checkout process and easier ways of earning and redeeming points. Android Pay is available for download from the Google Play online store.

"Walgreens Expands Mobile Payments Portfolio Via Android Pay-supported Balance Rewards", Mobile Commerce Daily, August 23, 2016

Tesco Announces 3-Hour Store Pick-Up Service In UK

UK retailer Tesco plans to offer a service that will allow customers to pick up their purchased items from any of the company's 300 stores within three hours after placing their order online. Accounting for about 10 percent of the country's grocery spending, online orders are forecast to rise to ₤15 billion by 2020, according to market research firm Mintel. Tesco's latest offering helps it get farther ahead of rival J Sainsbury, which began testing a same-day delivery and collection service in July 2016.

"Tesco offers 3-hour online order collection", Financial Times, August 24, 2016

Online Sales Of Hair Care And Color Products Growing, Report Shows

Online sales of hair care and color products are growing, according to market research firm L2. Data from the report, “Hair Care & Color,” revealed e-commerce share of retail sales of haircare products grew 14 percent year on year. Lower-margin consumer brands are driving online sales, the company said.

"Why Hair Care Brands Should Work With E-Tailers", L2 Daily, August 25, 2016

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