Publix achieves green milestone
LAKELAND, Fla. — Publix announced that its initiatives to reduce the use of paper and plastic grocery bags used at checkout have paid off.
The company said that as of May 10, the number of bags saved since mid 2007 surpassed the 2 billion mark.
"At Publix, we are fortunate to have customers and associates who are committed to sustaining our environment," said Maria Brous, Publix director of media and community relations. "That’s why we focus on the responsible use of environmental resources, and offering our customers and associates options when choosing paper, plastic or reusable bags."
Publix, which has offered in-store recycling of paper and plastic bags since the mid-1970s and introduced its first 99 cent reusable bags in mid-2007, has sold more than 21 million reusable bags at its stores. Last year, Publix’s overall recycling rate was 49%. To learn more about the company’s sustainability efforts, or to view a copy of Publix’s 2010 corporate sustainability report, visit click here.
Costco’s board OKs increase in quarterly dividend
ISSAQUAH, Wash. — Costco announced that its board of directors declared a quarterly cash dividend on Costco common stock and approved an increase from 24 cents to 27.5 cents per share, or from 96 cents per share to $1.10 per share on an annualized basis.
The quarterly dividend is payable June 8 to shareholders of record at the close of business on May 25.
Costco plans to release its operating results for the third quarter, ended May 6, on May 24.
Don’t be left in the dark as all signs point to growth for digitization
WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT’S IMPORTANT — If you are a retailer that has yet to develop a smartphone application, then you need to read this.
(THE NEWS: Survey: 45% of smartphone users with a retailer-branded app visit the retailer’s store more often. For the full story, click here)
Anyone who has been even remotely following technology trends has likely noticed that mobile technologies and social networking platforms — on behalf of both retailers and manufacturers — are becoming increasingly pervasive in the industry as a way to customize offers for today’s shopper. And the momentum shows no signs of slowing. In fact, based on a slew of recent survey results, the pace is quickening.
As the article stated, one of the more recent surveys to be released found that respondents who said they had downloaded a retailer-branded app said the app caused them to visit the store more often (45.8%), buy more of the store/brand’s products and services (40.4%), tell a friend about their store shopping experience (35.8%) and encourage friends to visit the store (30.8%).
Those are impressive numbers, and that’s why it is important for retailers — especially those that do not yet have an app — to sit up and take notice.
Clearly, consumers are using retailer-branded apps as an engagement tool, and the opportunity for retailers to leverage such technology and further engage consumers is significant.
Further evidence that digitization is increasingly getting greater play within retail is a new survey by agency network Leo Burnett Worldwide and its marketing services arm, Arc Worldwide, which found that people of all ages are using such social networking sites as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Groupon as shopping tools.
The "SocialShop" study found that 95 million Americans, or 42% of Americans, are shopping through social media, while almost 73% of people were using social media more than a year ago.
Meanwhile, it also was reported last week that, according to a ComScore study, online retail spending reached $44.3 billion for first quarter 2012, up 17% from the year-ago period. And when it came to mobile shoppers, ComScore found that 38% of tablet owners have made a purchase on their devices within the past month.