I have been reading several research reports from both sides of the Atlantic recently that talk about how customers are starting to favour the online shopping experience over the real, in-store experience. How could this be? Haven't retailers always found that some customers prefer to see and touch products before purchasing?
The tough macro environment is a compounding issue impacting growth for all players within the space. It has been a particularly prominent topic on Chinese companies' earnings calls, and appears to be a greater concern in the region. Online apparel is not as attractive a tech investment as it once was, although select names look set to benefit as industry players clammer to find dominance in the space.
And we are a nation of shopkeepers so we really can do better. Which is why I'm starting a new series called 'Reasons I won't return to your...' So here, I appeal to the UK's clothes shop owners and managers to improve the customer experience, with my eight reasons I won't be returning to your shop.
Around this time last year a large online auction website went public to announce they had been breached and millions of customer records were compromised. They were not alone, 2014 was marked by high-profile cyberattacks to high street and online retailers. Immediately after the attack, most companies asked their customers to change their passwords, either as a security fix or as a precaution, but is it enough?
The election result was a big shock: no one predicted the Conservatives would win an outright majority and no one forecast the SNP tsunami. It has shown us that the old rules no long apply. What once was does not have to be. Despite the perceived political differences, if towns and cities across the UK grasp that, the future doesn't have to be blue.