In today’s top retail news: Walmart branches out into private-label fashion, SMB retailers seize media opportunities, and the pandemic gives the book industry a surprising boost.
In today’s retail news, Walmart is trying on private-label fashion for size. Less than a week after Amazon launched its Luxury Stores, the Bentonville team’s newest entry into the category, called Free Assembly, will take a layered, multi-seasonal approach.
Opportunities abound for media-savvy SMB retailers in the fourth quarter. If the season is starting early, as many retailers say it will, SMBs need to have a keen sense of planning as well as the agility to embrace opportunity as presented.
The book business lives. The pandemic may have initially shut down bookstores and closed classrooms, but that drop-off has reportedly been replaced and even surpassed by consumer demand for printed books to be read during the pandemic.
Batteries Plus Bulbs is a lot more than batteries and bulbs. The 700-plus store chain is looking at a record year both for overall sales and franchisee development. Chief Strategy Officer Jon Sica told PYMNTS that the company’s digital sales model was aimed toward driving traffic to its franchisees, not necessarily for buying through the site (although that is an option). Then COVID-19 hit. If there was any doubt that the chain was “essential,” Sica noted that his customers – both B2B and B2C – removed that doubt.
There’s light at the end of the tunnel for SMBs, as nearly a quarter of them (24 percent) report that their financial situation has improved since COVID-19’s early days, when widespread shutdowns were taking effect. Many Main Street businesses that reported improvements since March were already financially stable to begin with. PYMNTS’ latest survey found that 69 percent of the SMBs that said they’re not at risk of failing now weren’t much worried that their businesses would shutter as a result of pandemic-forced closures.