HeadCount in Forbes
Should Walmart Reinstate In-Store Returns During A Pandemic?
Although public health officials say it’s unlikely COVID-19 infections can be spread by surfaces or physical objects, retailers are being cautious about how they handle returned merchandise. “This is a tricky issue that retailers are going to be grappling with for the foreseeable future. No doubt consumers have become accustomed to 100% returns, no questions asked, for a long time. However, the pandemic has rightly changed that. Retailers have no way of knowing if returned merchandise has been contaminated, and so limiting returns is reasonable,” says Mark Ryski, Founder and CEO, HeadCount Corporation. Read the article
Will The Retail Workforce Ever Return To Pre-Pandemic Levels?
The pandemic has hastened the evolution from analog to digital across all types of businesses, and retail is no different. How long will it take for retail employment to return to pre-pandemic levels — if it ever does — and what that means to recruitment and career paths in retail in the years ahead. “The lingering effects of the pandemic will be felt for years as the industry recalibrates. Not only will there be fewer employment opportunities in general (notwithstanding pockets of growth), but working in retail — especially frontline — has become less desirable,” says Mark Ryski, Founder, CEO and Author, HeadCount Corp. Read the article
How Macy’s Can Make Christmas Joyful This Year
Macy’s is looking into spreading holiday promotions, extending hours and playing up curbside pickup to better manage crowds this upcoming holiday season. Seasonal success, however, may be in large part out of retailers’ hands this year. “The holiday season will be entirely contingent upon the pandemic,” says Mark Ryski, CEO of Headcount Corporation. “If the economy continues to lurch forward and progress is being made on a vaccine or treatments, then I would expect to see a strong holiday season. However, if the virus spread continues unabated and retailers are forced to re-close some locations, then I would expect a weak holiday season.” Read the article
For Restaurants, Outdoor Dining Merely A Stopgap
As cities begin to open back up in the U.S., social distancing requirements remain in effect in hopes of preventing a rebound of COVID-19 infections. One architect recently created an outdoor dining template for restaurants to make use of the limited street and sidewalk space in New York City.” Outdoor dining will help create more capacity for those restaurants that have the time and money to create suitable outdoor eating space, but it’s not a panacea,” says Mark Ryski, CEO of Headcount Corporation. Read the article
Should Jewelers Require Consumers to Wear Masks?
In some jurisdictions, wearing masks is now mandatory when in public. In others, it isn’t. Some jewelers have been “strongly encouraging” or “politely asking” customers to wear masks. The implication is clear: They want customers to wear them. They don’t want to force them to. “Retailers have an obligation to provide a safe environment for the employees and shoppers, regardless of how politically incorrect that might be. Countries that have had the best results in minimizing spread, such as South Korea, have adopted face masks en masse. If some customers don’t feel comfortable with or don’t agree with face masks, they are free to shop at other stores,” says Mark Ryski, Author, CEO & Founder of HeadCount Corp. Read the article
L.L.Bean CEO Calls On Federal Government To Assist Middle-Market Retailers
Middle-market retailers are under particularly intense pressure from the COVID-19 outbreak — they lack the resources that larger retailers can tap to survive the crisis, and they may not qualify for the same relief being made available to smaller companies. “Virtually every business is being affected by the crisis and can make a strong case for federal government support,” says Mark Ryski, Founder and CEO of HeadCount Corporation. “But the federal government is so preoccupied with life-saving efforts, I just don’t think middle-market retailers are going to hit high on the priority list,” says Mark Ryski, Author, CEO & Founder of HeadCount Corp. Read the article
Retail: Target trabaja plan para rediseñar 1,000 tiendas para el 2021
Target Corporation, cadena de grandes almacenes, se encuentra en el sexto año de su intento por abrir tiendas más pequeñas. La compañía probará el 2021 un nuevo formato en áreas urbanas densas que es aproximadamente la mitad del tamaño de sus locales actuales. “Creo que la aspiración de Target de reducir la fricción del comprador está en el camino correcto”, señaló Mark Ryski, CEO de la firma de análisis de negocios HeadCount. Read the article
Modell’s Needs To Figure Out What It Did Wrong
Family-owned chain Modell’s Sporting Goods, a familiar retailer throughout the northeastern U.S., is preparing to declare bankruptcy. The CEO’s unusual step late in February to keep the company afloat by reaching out publicly to crowdsource funds has proven unsuccessful. “I don’t recall ever seeing a CEO attempt to appeal to the market in such a candid and vulnerable way,” wrote Mark Ryski, CEO of HeadCount Corporation. “And while I give Mitchell Modell credit for trying to leverage social media, his pleas for support makes him and his company appear disturbingly desperate. I don’t think this will help Modell’s situation – in fact, it may make it worse.” Read the article
PODCAST: Driving sales when store traffic is down
Declining store traffic is often cited as the key reason why sales are down, but retail analytics expert and two-time author, Mark Ryski has a different take on it – he says, retailers often don’t have a traffic problem, they have a shopper conversion problem. And he has the data to prove it. Listen to the podcast
Secondhand Is Hot, But Will Nordstrom Get Burned?
Secondhand clothing has found a home at Nordstrom. The department store retailer has launched a new resale concept — See You Tomorrow — online and at the Nordstrom flagship in New York City. “I really admire Nordstrom’s entry into the secondhand market, especially from an environmental perspective,” says Mark Ryski, CEO of HeadCount Corporation. “And it may be a way to win younger shoppers who can’t afford new product and are much more open to secondhand merchandise.” Read the article
New Walmart U.S. CEO Brings Retention Lessons From Sam’s Club
John Furner, Walmart U.S.’s new CEO, said the first step he took to drive employee satisfaction when leading Sam’s Club was to invest significantly in retention, particularly team leaders that guide departments. “Training, work-life balance and recognition are all important elements for retention,” wrote Mark Ryski, CEO of HeadCount Corporation. “And while it’s hard to say exactly which aspects will have the most impact on retention, the trend is clear: thoughtful retailers are re-investing in their people and they are delivering better business results. I don’t think this is a coincidence.” Read the article
今年のクリスマス商戦、小売店はさまざまな意味で、八方ふさがり的な状況にある トラフィックデータ専門企業「ヘッドカウント（HeadCount）」の最高経営責任者（CEO）マーク・リスキ（Mark Ryski）はBrainTrustで、「カテゴリーを問わず、商品を無料で返品できると消費者は考えるようになった。従って、競合他社が進んで返品無料サービスを提供している場合は、この特典を消費者から取り上げる簡単な方法はないと思う」というコメントを投稿している。Read the article