BEAUTY CARE

Mineral Fusion gets in the holiday spirit

BY Ryan Chavis

NEW YORK — Mineral Fusion announced the launch of a new, limited-edition holiday kit filled with Lip Tints. The formula is composed of natural ingredients and also smooths lips with cocoa butter, the company said. 
 
The formula is gluten-free, hypoallergenic and free from parabens, artificial colors, talc and fragrance. Consumers can choose from among three shades: Smolder, Flicker and Glisten. Mineral Fusion Lip Tints can be purchased for $19.99 at Whole Foods Markets across the country, as well as at health food stores and MineralFusion.com. 

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Survey: As many as 56% of consumers are shopping for the holidays as of Nov. 1

BY Michael Johnsen

 

CHICAGO — As many as 60% of shoppers wait until November before they start their holiday gift buying, with 31% hitting the stores around Nov. 1 and 29% waiting until Black Friday. And as many as 15% procrastinate to the last minute to do their shopping, according to a survey conducted on behalf of Retale, a location-based mobile platform connecting shoppers with local retailers. One-in-four shoppers are on the lookout for gifts year round. 
 
According to the survey, 82% of consumers plan to spend the same amount or more on holiday spending as compared to last year, while just 18% plan on scaling back and spending less. When asked where they would do their shopping, 22% said online only, 24% said brick-and-mortar retail stores only, and 54% said they would shop both online and in-store.   
 
Among those owning a mobile device, 73% plan to use them for holiday shopping, with the most common mobile shopping activities of those users being finding deals (97%); comparing prices (96%) researching products (96%); accessing coupons (92%); finding stores (89%); and buying directly from the device (85%).
 
On average, 60% of these activities take place both in and out of stores as mobile devices are increasingly used to support both experiences. 
 
The top activity conducted out-of-store is buying directly from a mobile device (30%), with the most common in-store activity being the accessing of coupons (14%). The least likely in-store mobile activity is finding deals (8%) and researching products (8%), while accessing coupons (16%) is the least likely out-of-store activity. 
 
“During the holiday season, mobile is increasingly critical for shoppers, whether in-store or out,” stated Pat Dermody, president of Retale. “There is no doubt that mobile must be a part of everyone’s holiday strategy from giving customers an opportunity to find deals to helping them find your stores to buying from their devices, mobile is where it’s at this year.”
 
When asked what kind of device — smartphone or tablet — shoppers prefer for mobile shopping activities, respondents indicated the smartphone is the dominant format. On average, 47% prefer using a smartphone for shopping activities, with just 32% opting for a tablet. The top smartphone activity is finding store locations (61%), with researching products online (42%) the preferred context for tablet use, and the only area where tablets exceeded smartphones (by a single percentage point). 
 
In analyzing responses based on mobile platform ownership/use, Retale discovered a number of differences among Android and Apple users, specifically. Android and Apple owners accounted for 89% of those surveyed. According to the survey: 
 
Apple users (89%) are more likely to buy directly from their devices than Android users (85%);Android users (51%) prefer mobile shopping on a smartphone more than Apple users (48%); andApple users (86%) are more likely to spend the same amount or more on holiday spending this year than Android users (80%).  
 
The study polled 1,000 adult men and women across the United States between Oct. 20 and Oct. 27, 2014.
 

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Walgreens and Amazon.com advance in the 2014 Kantar Retail PowerRanking Survey

BY Michael Johnsen

WILTON, Conn. — Both Walgreens and Amazon.com advanced in the 2014 Kantar Retail PowerRanking Survey released Tuesday. Walgreens climbed from the No. 10 spot to No. 9 and Amazon.com went from No. 8 to No. 5. 
 
The annual survey, now in its 18th year, benchmarks how U.S. retailers and manufacturers view each other across the most important areas of their commercial relationships. 
 
Meanwhile, last year’s top four retailers — Walmart, Target, Kroger and Costco — each retained their respective ranks in 2014. Walmart generally expanded its lead over the rest of the field, once again earning top marks for its comprehensive and efficient supply chain management in particular. Manufacturers also praised Walmart for increasing its investments in digital capabilities and expanding its smaller store formats versus its traditional supercenters. 
 
Coming in at No. 6 was Publix; HEB ranked No. 7 and Wegmans No. 8; Safeway rounded out the top 10 list. 
 
"As Walmart gets bigger and they flex their business into new spaces (i.e. online, convenience store, etc.), they will have to stay ahead of the curve knowing Amazon's threat," suggested one manufacturer respondent. "They will find a way to further innovate and cater to their consumers' needs. They have the scale and resources to do it."
 
Turning to the study’s findings on the manufacturer side, retailers once again gave Procter & Gamble a collective nod as the top-ranked trading partner. P&G strengthened its position atop the manufacturer leaderboard, receiving the No. 1 ranking on five out of the eight individual metrics that comprise the total PoweRankings. General Mills and PepsiCo both improved their ranks since last year to capture the second and third place positions, respectively.
 
The remainder of the manufacturer's list included, in order: Unilever, Kraft, Coca-Cola, Nestle, Kellogg, Mars and Kimberly Clark. 
 
This year's PowerRanking report portrays an industry grappling with uncertainty stemming from several fundamental forces currently reshaping the retail landscape. The emergence of millennials as the domninant shopping cohort of the future; the extension of e-commerce into packaged goods and perishables; the new normal of a national economy dramatically divided between the rich and the poor — none of which are news to the retail industry. What is new in 2014 is that retailers and manufacturers are seeing these forces impact their business in tangible and unsettling ways. 
 
PoweRanking participants pointed to the abilities to act fast and to focus on the future as key factors for success. "The retail landscape is undergoing rapid, fundamental change," noted Dianne Graham, Kantar Retail VP. "Marketplace leaders will be those companies that are best able to anticipate trends and then act quickly to adapt to changing shopper preferences and behaviors."
 
In particular, PoweRanking respondents reported that they are heavily focused on figuring out how to win with the approximately 80 million Millennials now aging into their prime spending years. "It is crucial that suppliers help us better understand the Millennial shopper," noted one retailer. "We need their guidance and collaboration in adapting and preparing for their new shopper needs in assortment, value and communication.
 
The 2014 PoweRanking report reflects a consensus that industry changes have reached a tipping point. Retailers and manufacturers want help from their major trading partners to move forward. 
 
Other key findings from this year’s PoweRanking report include:
 
  • Many mid-size manufacturers (under $10 billion in annual revenue) fared well in 2014: Hershey (No. 11), Clorox (No. 15) and Hormel Foods (No. 19) each improved two ranks since last year;
  • S.C. Johnson & Sons also made an impressive leap from No. 32 to No. 18, and Hillshire Brands rose four ranks to No. 23 overall; and
  • Following its split from Del Monte Foods in March 2014, Big Heart Pet Brands debuted as a new manufacturer at No. 25 in the rankings.
 

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