Retailers need to know their strengths and how they are different from their competitors, and then zero in on those areas. In its most recent earnings report, Tops Markets discussed two holiday pricing promotions that helped the company retain market share. Tops had enjoyed success with the promotions in the past, and knew its customer base could be motivated to spend even more in its stores during Christmastime.
Amazon, which “can change a price in 90 seconds,” according to Ouimet, is forcing retailers to be fast but careful with their pricing strategies. Many retailers, he noted in his presentation, still take weeks to implement new prices — an inefficiency that makes them vulnerable to e-commerce giants along with other retailers that are using technology to quickly update how much they charge customers.
Kroger is one retailer that’s increasingly relying on technology to enhance its pricing. This includes a pilot store model that uses in-store sensors to recognize customers, then personalizes prices based on their shopping history. It’s a strategy that brings the agility and customization of e-commerce to brick-and-mortar stores — and it’s the sort of tactic retailers may eventually need to stay ahead of Amazon as well as other grocers.
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