- Departmental and Discount Stores in the US have combined annual revenue of about USD 475 billion.
- The industry includes 10,000 companies that operate 40,000 stores.
- The industry s highly concentrated with the 20 largest companies operating 26,000 stores and holding 95% of the market.
Actual store operations for all such stores remain broadly the same around effective in-store automation retail software and supply chain management. The stores sell all categories of goods ranging from hard goods like furniture, tools and appliances to soft goods like clothing, towels and sheets. Most of the stores also sell electronics, toys, drugs and groceries.
Still, each company specializes in a specific merchandizing strategy deciding what categories of goods to sell and which items to sell in the category to attract a particular customer type.
Such retail companies heavily rely on imports from Far East at extremely competitive prices. Not only is the logistics of delivery critical, it is equally critical to source the right mix of merchandize. Ability to collate, analyze and act on consumer buying patterns, sales trends and changes in buying patterns are imperative to succeed in the large departmental stores industry.
Department stores face stiff competition from various other forms of retail businesses. Entities such as the Home Shopping Network, mail order catalogs, and Internet retailing have the ability to capture sales due to their convenience and ease. Nonstore retailers have greatly increased their sales revenues in recent years due in large to the explosion in “e-retailing.”
The industry faces challenges to effectively manage their unique positioning and merchandizing strategy and at the same time provide a wider range of goods to the customer under the same umbrella – more so with the same shopping experience.
Such a balance requires an integrated business management solution that allows flexibility to cater to the diverse demands of Departmental Stores. A system that seamlessly integrates all business processes from the POS at store to the retail software planners at the Head Office lowering the overall cost of operations, simplifying expansion and enabling the Departmental Store Company maintain his unique proposition and positioning.