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Study: National dollar store chain locations outnumber those of national retail pharmacy chains

BY Alaric DeArment

SEATTLE — The combined store count of the county’s largest dollar store chains outnumbers that of the largest retail pharmacy chains as continued economic difficulties drive the channel’s growth, according to a new study released Monday by Colliers International.

The study, titled "Dollar Days: How Dollar Stores are Growing in a Weak Economy," found that the rapid expansion in the dollar channel is due to retailers taking notice of customers on the lookout for value. The four biggest chains — Dollar General, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar and 99 Cents Only — now have 21,500 stores around the country, more than the combined number of stores operated by Walgreens, CVS and Rite Aid.

"The rapid evaporation of wealth, both real and perceived, has profoundly changed the way Americans shop and how they define value," Colliers International national manager for U.S. retail research Ann Natunewicz said. "Dollar stores now serve a larger customer base, which is fueling unprecedented growth in dollar store leasing and a significant shift in the types of retail space they take."

The study also found that dollar stores have updated their look and the ways they present merchandise, increasing customer trip frequency by expanding their food offerings. In addition, they have gained greater acceptance as tenants among landlords, moving into better locations thanks to large-scale vacancies. Meanwhile, restrictions placed on landlords’ leasing to dollar stores in shopping centers anchored by mass merchandisers and supermarkets is pushing dollar stores into other real-estate locations.

"The convenience they provide — better products at lower prices closer to the consumer — helps dollar stores to better serve existing customers and attract new ones," Natunewicz said. "Retail is habit-forming: The longer shoppers patronize a particular store or category, the more likely it is to become a permanent shopping destination."

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A.FEIN says:
Dec-05-2011 12:47 pm

Why not post a link to the report? Here it is: http://www.colliers.com/Country/UnitedStates/content/Colliers_Whitepaper_DollarDays_20111201.pdf

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ComScore: Happy holiday season (so far) for online retail spending

BY Allison Cerra

RESTON, Va. — Online retail spending has seen a big jump this holiday season to date, according to a new report from ComScore.

According to the research firm, retail e-commerce spending for the first 32 days of the November-December 2011 holiday season saw a 15% spike to $18.7 billion, compared with the corresponding days last year. The overall spending was driven by billion-dollar spending days, including Cyber Monday, Nov. 28 ($1.25 billion), followed by Nov. 29 ($1.12 billion) and Nov. 30 ($1.03 billion).

"Cyber Monday kicked the week off with a bang as consumers opened their wallets to the tune of $1.25 billion, but it was only the beginning of a very strong week of online holiday spending," ComScore chairman Gian Fulgoni said. "Tuesday and Wednesday followed with billion dollar spending days, helping Cyber Week reach a record weekly total of nearly $6 billion in spending. As the deals from this week expire, it will be important to see the degree to which consumers return to the same retailers to continue their holiday shopping, thereby helping improve retailers’ profit margins, or if we experience a pullback in consumer spending — which has occurred in previous years — before promotional offers and spending intensity pick back up in earnest around mid-December."

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Hy-Vee brings Aisle411 shopping app to customers

BY Allison Cerra

ST. LOUIS — Hy-Vee has deployed a mobile retail navigation service designed to help customers search for in-store items.

The retailer said that its shoppers now can access the Aisle411 in-store mobile shopping app within Aisle411’s iPhone and Android apps, as well as via Hy-Vee’s iPhone app.

How it works: The platform, which features retail navigation technology, a context aware product recommendation engine and an advertising server, takes in-store inventory data and floor maps, and makes them searchable and interactive via a mobile app.

"As consumers embrace mobile technology to expedite their daily tasks, major retailers are embracing Aisle411’s in-store shopping platform and embedding it in their apps providing further proof that Aisle411 is becoming the standard for in-store navigation," Aisle411 CEO Nathan Pettyjohn said. "Hy-Vee Food Stores has taken the initiative to deliver its shoppers a premium tool to ensure shopping experiences are enjoyable by deploying the Aisle411 platform."

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