November 14, 2019

Earlier this year, McDonald’s spent $300 million acquiring a data analysis and artificial intelligence startup called Dynamic Yield. Along with providing the fast food chain with tons of information about its operations, this new technology will also help the company upgrade its growing fleet of self-ordering kiosks. Customers can place orders on these large touchscreens rather than wait in line, which the company claims improves efficiency and increases sales. As a result, McDonald’s wants to place these machines in as Continue reading

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October 31, 2019

For this year’s Halloween festivities, Americans will spend an estimated $8.8 billion on items like candy, decorations, and costumes designed for all walks of life. Along with shelling out $3.2 billion on outfits meant for kids and adults, consumers will also spend $490 million on costumes for their pets. According to a recent survey, 51 percent of dog owners plan to dress up their pups for the holiday, spending an average of about $20. 

Retail experts say the popularity Continue reading

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October 22, 2019

The last couple of years have not been kind to brick-and-mortar retailers: since 2017 more than 50 companies have gone bankrupt and 21,000 locations have closed across the country. Instead of heading out to stores, many modern consumers now depend on Amazon for their shopping needs. Along with providing convenience, the e-commerce giant also offers everyday low prices as well as major sales events like Prime Day. In response, many traditional retailers have started offering deep discounts in an effort Continue reading

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October 4, 2019

In recent years food delivery startups like Postmates and Doordash have grown into multi-billion dollar operations by bringing takeout from all sorts of places directly to customers’ doors. But these companies don’t just service restaurants: people can also order everyday items from Walgreens or 7-Eleven and receive them hours later. Of course, consumers are more familiar with Postmates and Doordash as takeout services, not grocery delivery companies. 

As a result, both startups are brokering deals with retailers and supermarkets Continue reading

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October 1, 2019

In the early 2000s, fast fashion brands like Zara and Forever 21 exploded in popularity by providing the latest trends at cut-rate prices. But while the former continues to thrive, this week Forever 21 announced that it would declare bankruptcy after years of declining sales. Along with closing up to 178 stores in the U.S., the retailer will also cease operations in more than 40 countries. Hundreds of domestic locations, as well as Forever 21’s website, will remain open. “What Continue reading

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September 3, 2019

In the days before e-commerce, department stores like Macy’s and J.C. Penney were the ultimate shopping destinations for millions of consumers. But with Amazon now dominating much of the retail world, these companies can no longer attract the same crowds as they did in their glory days. While Macy’s recently fell far short of its second quarter sales estimates, J. C. Penney has lost a total of $101 million so far in 2019. 

In order to make up for Continue reading

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August 8, 2019

A couple of weeks ago, we posted a video about the rise of rush shipping and its effect on the environment. Along with impacting the health of the planet, the recent push to deliver products as fast as possible has also altered the balance of power in the shipping industry. Over the past few years, Amazon has developed its own delivery network of trucks and planes in order to decrease its dependency on outside shipping firms. As a result, Continue reading

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August 6, 2019

Last week, we took a look at how online shopping and rising rents are causing many retailers to reassess the worth of their flagship stores. Among the companies mentioned was Barneys, a Manhattan mainstay that used the success of its nine-story flagship to expand across the world. The retailer first became famous for its flashy Madison Avenue window displays that drew countless people inside over the years. By the late 1990s, Barneys became an almost sacred destination for shoppers Continue reading

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August 1, 2019

For many years, shoppers flocked to destinations like Madison Avenue in Manhattan and Chicago’s Magnificent Mile to experience the best that American retail had to offer. Home to flagship locations from Macy’s, Barneys and many others, these enormous stores acted as potent marketing tools as much as places to buy products. The rise of online shopping changed all that, however, causing multi-floor department stores to lose their appeal. 

As a result, many top retailers are closing the doors on Continue reading

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