Success in e-commerce has come naturally to many small and large retailers. However, such success seems to be forever evading one of the top retailers in America, Wal-Mart. The store’s online retail sales growth has been dropping steadily since the beginning of 2014. In the first quarter of 2015, the retail titan saw a glimmer of hope with slight sales growth. This was short-lived. In the past year, their sales have only grown by 7 percent–and this in comparison to their previous year’s growth of 17 percent and an industry average of 15 percent.
So, why is Wal-Mart struggling? In 2015, they invested 2 billion dollars into e-commerce advancements. These advancements included everything from upgrading their e-commerce fulfillment centers to other innovations that made the website more user-friendly.
You may think that your small retailer has little in common with the Golden State Warriors. But let’s look closer at the lessons that can be gleaned from their corporate culture and their commitment to stay connected to fans via technology.
Recently the Golden State Warriors were in the news due to a merchant panel hosted by American Express, where small business owners and entrepreneurs spent time learning about how the team has successfully connected to its fans via technology. Forbes describes some of the practical take-aways from the event:
Big-name stores have always been the enemy of startups and small businesses, but this may be changing soon. Many of these retail monoliths are on a downward slope, particularly J.C Penney, Macy’s and Kohl’s, all of whom are reporting losses and fewer customers perusing their stores. This is bad news for the big guy, but what does this mean for you? Where are their customers going?
It seems these days there are sweet, little bakeries popping up on every corner across the country. They all offer something unique and delectable. But what happens when your ‘unique’ bakery loses its luster because there is suddenly an influx of them and customers are inundated with several options to choose from to satisfy their sweet tooth?
It is estimated that there are some 2,800 bakeries currently registered in the U.S., with this number growing significantly each year. Business owners have to work hard not just whipping up that delicious homemade frosting, but in keeping their product relevant. Within this niche, store owners are no longer able to just focus on their passion for baked goods, but now must also focus so much time and attention on marketing and brand recognition in an effort to maintain earnings revenue.
There are several ways boutique bakeries stand out from the pack. One successful way is by using packaging that is a cut above the rest. (Similar to judging a book by its cover which, face it, we all do.) Packaging in no way can determine the quality of what is inside, but it gives business owners a better shot at consumers trying them out the first time. Great packaging design will allow the bakery owner to give a proverbial cover page to their work. When we see things in attractive packaging it will naturally peak our interests more than something that appears generic or dull.
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