Retail Roundup | November 2023
As a retail technology company obsessed with data, we at Tillerman are constantly looking at the trends and forecasts shaping the retail industry broadly. The start of 2022 continued to bring challenges with supply chain issues, inflation and of course Omicron having an impact, but there were bright spots as well. Heres a roundup of some of the retail stories that caught our eye this month.

As we dive into the 2023 Holiday shopping season, the retail landscape is ablaze with the aftermath of the Black Friday weekend.  Record-breaking numbers were driven by On-line shopping; however, a surprising number of younger shoppers demonstrated their resilience to digital trends, opting for the allure of in-store doorbuster deals. 

Despite prevailing macroeconomic headwinds, the National Retail Federation (NRF) is predicting growth despite all the macro headwinds. At the same time, an intriguing paradox emerges as retailers gear up for the season. Even with the anticipation of robust traffic, there's a consistent trend of job cuts and a reduced intake of seasonal workers, casting shadows over the retail job market.

In the realm of earnings, November presented a mixed bag for major retailers. Target faced a dip in Q3 sales, but their strategic emphasis on inventory control yielded better-than-expected earnings. Kohl's reported sales downturns but countered with an optimistic outlook, citing expense control and margin improvements as signs of successful strategies. Nordstrom, too, experienced a sales decline but managed to outperform bottom-line expectations. Macy's triumphed against the odds, beating expectations in a challenging climate. Wal-Mart, while reporting better-than-expected results, sounded a note of caution for the remainder of 2023.

The newly appointed chief at VF Corporation is embarking on a journey to revitalize the company by implementing cost-cutting measures and a reinvention strategy. Meanwhile, Birkenstock, despite a lackluster first week of trading, has analysts betting on its potential for a turnaround.

With an eye on growth, retailers are exploring diverse strategies. Retail Brew's insightful analysis outlines the myriad approaches, including facelifts, small formats, expansions, and pop-ups. Target, in a bid to rejuvenate lackluster results, is banking on refined strategies, and Walmart is tackling the last-mile shipping challenge by leveraging its stores as fulfillment centers. Lastly, is an illuminating interview with Purva Gupta, founder of Lily AI, shedding light on the company's approach to product improvement and the value it delivers to clients. 

As we navigate the complexities of the business landscape, November's stories paint a nuanced picture of challenges, resilience, and strategic shifts that will undoubtedly shape the trajectory of retail in the coming months. 

Here's hoping Holiday 2023 is merry and bright for all!

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