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  • The Do’s and Don’ts of Pop-Up Retail – Lessons From The Social Retail Summit


    Dax Dasilva with Greg Spielberg, Melissa Gonzalez and Eric Ho

    Last week, we were proud attendees and co-sponsors of the Social Retail Summit in Brooklyn, New York. The bi-annual conference brings together innovative retailers, experiential marketing consultants, pop-up shop experts, ecommerce gurus and more. This summer’s edition was no exception. In an industrially chic space in the developing neighborhood of Dumbo, our CEO Dax Dasilva moderated the panel of four, each with a fascinating point-of-view on pop-up retail. Here are each of their Do’s and Don’ts for opening up a temporary store:

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  • Retail Round-Up: Beating eCom with Stellar Service, and Empowering Your Employees

    Tory Burch’s brick-and-mortar business is beating out eCommerce rivals due to their hyper-attentive service strategy, headed up by complimentary refreshments, listening intently to customer feedback, and using iPads in-store. (T-Cuento) (Image: Tory Burch)

    Where are retailers’ priorities when it comes to technology? A survey of 640 LightSpeed users reveals that predictive analytics, inventory management, e-commerce, and in-store mobile device integration are key.  (Tech Vibes)

    Are your employees empowered to do a little extra for customers? Granting employees leeway to delight customers or solve a problem can cause a stir of positive reviews – as we see in two examples from Red Lobster and Frontier Airlines. (Forbes)

    American merchants should take note: people are spending more than ever on practical necessities this summer. Gas, bills, and groceries are leaving little room for leisurely activities and frivolous treats. (Washington Post)

    Your store’s online reviews matter. A new study shows that consumers are paying close attention to online recommendations and reviews of businesses including retail stores. The ultimate recommendation, however, remains word-of-mouth. (RetailWire)

  • The LightSpeed Retail Tech Forecast

    The way in which technology is transforming retail is a perpetual hot topic. Weekly news stories on iBeacon, eCommerce, fitting room technologies, inventory management, mobile checkout and more reveal technology’s growing role in the evolution of the industry. To help make sense of it all, we reached out to the real decision-makers in retail: store owners.

    Our first annual Retail Tech Forecast delivers some hard-hitting stats about the kind of solutions merchants need. 640 independent retailers gave us a clear view of what technology they are using, planning to invest in (or not!), and why.

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  • Summer Reading: 5 Musts for Retailers

    For retailers, summertime often means sales time, tourist season, or a few weeks to prepare for a busy season ahead. During the dog days of summer, we hope they take some time to kick back and relax! Local book stores are great places to cool off, browse a little, and get expert advice from passionate readers. Whether you’re a store manager, owner, or contemplating a new venture, here are five great reads containing business tips and inspiration you can absorb while enjoying some well-deserved R&R.

    1) The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change
    -By Stephen Covey

    Our social media feeds have inundated us with lists over the past couple of years. Here’s a list that will keep your attention longer than a BuzzFeed page (and it’s probably more useful). This best seller balances anecdotes and theories, and has been described as “life changing”.

    2) Pop-Up Retail: How You Can Master this Global Marketing Phenomenon
    -By Christina Norsig

    The pop-up shop trend isn’t about to slow down, so if you haven’t considered looking into opening your first pop-up, it’s time you did. This book acts as a step-by-step guide for first-timers, covering everything from choosing a location to how to market your temporary store.

    3) The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies
    -By Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee

    For better or for worse, modern technology has had the biggest impact on our lives and economy since the industrial revolution. This year’s release will trigger your thoughts on how tech innovations have changed societies, and how we can adapt for the future.

    4) David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants
    -By Malcolm Gladwell

    It is summer, after all; complement that weighty philosophical reading with something light and fun! Malcolm Gladwell’s books contain highly entertaining anecdotes, while remaining inspiring and thought provoking. This book explores the phenomena of advantages and disadvantages, and how to play with (or against) them to end up as a winner.

    5) Think and Grow Rich
    -By Napoleon Hill

    An oldie but a goodie, Think and Grow Rich has topped the charts as a must-read for entrepreneurs since 1937. Long before the cult-like following of the theories revealed in “The Secret”, Dr. Hill explained the power of positive thinking and creating your own successful realities through desire.

  • Retail Round-Up: Attracting Millennials with Digital Signage, and how Nordstrom is taking Instagram to the Next Level

    Nordstrom is making shopping on Instagram possible—almost. The app itself doesn’t currently directly link to their site, but they do share bit.ly links that open up in a user’s browser. Instagram has become crucial for consumer interaction, and Nordstrom’s insta-strategy is ahead of the game. (Luxury Daily)

    Main street shops can thank the mobile commerce trend. When it comes to smart phones, consumers are looking for coupons that drive them to physical stores, rather than deals online. (Venture Beat)

    Speaking of mobile commerce, 5 trends including mobile POS devices are slowly becoming the standard in modern retail. Despite the changing face of consumer engagement, focusing on the core product will ultimately remain the most important. (Fox Small Business)

    Retailers take note: Millennials will make up 1/3 of consumers by 2020, and they’re easily bored. Digital signage is crucial for companies looking to keep their attention. (Market Wired)

    Since the early 90’s, Chico’s stores have catered to women aged 40+ looking for colorful, affordable fashion. Despite some major financial crises, they’ve retained their target market with loyalty initiatives such as their Passport Program, and by adopting omnichannel strategies. (The Robin Report)

     

  • The No-checkout Checkout at Kinsley

    The typical Californian lifestyle is all about having a laid back, easy-going attitude and fun in the sun. It’s also about being at the forefront of what’s on-trend while remaining comfortable. Kinsley, an independent retail chain in the LA area, exemplifies this lifestyle.

    The three (soon to be four) boutiques reflect southern California’s flavor, and sell mostly LA-based apparel and accessories brands – think breezy dresses and funky totes. With a weathered wood decor, white-washed tables and coral accents, the stores are relaxed and contemporary – and they thought their POS should match. That’s why they’ve switched out their traditional cash registers for a modern iPad setup.

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  • Big Data, Big Decisions: 7 LightSpeed Cloud Reports To Help You Better Understand Your Store


    Retailers have an overwhelming number of moving parts to manage. How much time – and ultimately, money – is wasted when decisions are made based on guesswork?

    We want to help retailers eliminate uncertainty, and that’s why LightSpeed Cloud comes packed with reports that make sense of the numbers and help you make smarter business decisions. Last month, we doubled-down on data by releasing 17 new, free reports for LightSpeed Cloud – and today, we’re going to walk through some of the essentials.

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  • Retail Round-Up: The Top 100 Retailers and Why Fashion and Technology are Vying for the Same Talent

     

    The technology industry is becoming seriously fashionable, and the fashion industry is becoming technologically ultra-advanced. The two worlds have been colliding when it comes to hiring the best of the best. (The Wall Street Journal)

    How are point of sale companies changing the retail game? By giving physical stores predictive analytics about employee performance and inventory, they’re giving them a leg up against eCom competition. (Multichannel Merchant)

    Many consumers expect omnichannel service, but few retailers can properly deliver. The reason for missing the mark might lie in back-end operations and a lack of integrated technologies. (Memeburn)

    Who are the heaviest hitters in retail this year? Amazon tops the charts (no surprise there) but it’s the only purely eCommerce company to do it. (National Retail Federation)

    Bonobos, the online brand famous for their “sexy” men’s pants, joined the physical world by recently opening 10 “guideshops”. By embracing the showrooming model (letting customers try on clothes in the store and then place orders for delivery) they’ve successfully blended online and offline retail. (New York Times)

  • The Williamsburg Shopping Guide

    Situated on the west side of Brooklyn, New York, and overlooking the east river with views of Manhattan, is the historic neighborhood of Williamsburg. The area is culturally diverse and has, until recently, been traditionally known as a hub for artists and musicians. While rents have skyrocketed over the past eight years, it’s still a vibrant community loaded with art galleries and indie businesses. The popular neighborhood draws crowds of tourists and newcomers, and has been called “a mecca of entertainment and nightlife.” It’s also known for its shopping scene, and we proudly work with dozens of retailers in Williamsburg and neighboring Greenpoint. Here are just some of the must-see shops that offer unique products and personable environments.

  • Connection, Communication, and the Cloud: How Be Barow is Kick-Starting Their Brand


    The store's founder Phil Barow celebrates an active lifestyle at a recent in-store event

    At Be Barow, a new women’s sportswear store in New Jersey, customer connections are everything. The line features colorful athletic wear, but it’s about more than quality apparel and unique designs – it’s about empowering women and giving back to the community. “We lead with our socially conscious values of health and wellness, and that drives people to the store more than our window display,” says founder Phil Barow.

    As a brand new business, getting those values across means actively going where the customers are and connecting with them one on one. Here’s how Be Barow has been causing a local stir since opening just one month ago:

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