Is Big Box Retail Contracting

Over the past several years the economy has been hard on business, even business that most thought would be insulated from a bad economy, big box retail. But even the big box retail stores have had issues and several are contracting, closing stores or consolidating with other big box chains.

Is Big Box Retail ContractingIf you look back over the last few years several big box stores of all types have disappeared. One huge book seller, Borders, went out of business. They lost out to Barnes and Noble. Barnes and Noble is fast going under as well to online sellers like Amazon. Big box retail like Walmart and Target are actually down sizing (or contracting) in some areas because being big is now in their way. Others like Office Depot and Office Max, two large office supply chains are merging together in order to be able to compete with their other main competitor, Staples. All of these businesses have to deal with Amazon as well.

It was probably inevitable. In many situations having 3 different big box retail office supply stores in one area was overkill. Same with several department stores like Walmart, Kmart and Target. There is only so much to go around and when the economy tanked, people had less money to spread around. That meant there was no longer enough to support them all.

So what can the big box stores do to change their luck? First, put the emphasis on customer service. Customers should not walk into a store and not find competent staff to help them no matter what the economy is doing. Too often customers walk into big box stores like an Office Depot or Best Buy and can’t find anyone to help them, or worse yet, get wrong information. Nothing will make people stop shopping at a store than getting bad information that costs them money especially in this economy.

Big box retail is going through contracting. How they continue to handle it from here on out will determine if the contracting is over.

How Does Political Upheaval (on both sides) Affect Retail

Seems that these days politics is all you hear about, but given the rancor and political upheaval you’d have to wonder if it all had any effect on your retail operations. Politics does, and always had and here are some major ways that it affects your bottom line.

How Does Political Upheaval (on both sides) Affect RetailTaxes: This is the biggest and top of the list for how politics affects business, big and small. For retail, it hits you in a few different ways. First the more you are taxed, the less money you make. You can hire fewer people. Upgrading technology isn’t possible. Training staff may have to be put off.

Keeping inventory on hand isn’t always possible. High taxes are business killers. Some would argue, however, that tax breaks given to corporations more than make up for it. For small business that is rarely the case, and even for medium to large businesses those tax breaks are quickly diminished if the business is profitable. Then there is the other side of the coin, the effect of taxes on your customers. If your customers have big tax liabilities: income, real estate, sales tax, etc., it cuts into their discretionary spending. If they have less to spend, you see less in your cash register.

Another large area where politics interferes with business is regulation. Governmental regulation, from Federal to State to local dictates much of how you can do business. On the local and/or county level, you need licenses to do business. They dictate how you dispose of your trash and recyclables, how the land your store sits on is zoned. They can tell you if you can start that small business in your home or not. On the state level you have even more restrictions. Licenses on that level as well, state environmental regulations, inspections for safety and food (if it applies), where you can do business, what you can charge for certain types of products. On the Federal level there are even more environmental regulations, health and safety regulations, and rules about benefits you must provide and how to provide them. Rules about who you can, and in some cases must, hire. The list goes on and on. One side wants more regulation, the other wants to leave business be and let them be profitable.

Politics is involved in every aspect of our lives and can’t be avoided. Be aware at the voting booth, and vote for your business to succeed.

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Retail Sales Staff – How to Get the Best from Your Employees

So what does it take to get the best from your retail sales staff? Even in a poor economy, holding onto good employees is important. It’s expensive to hire and train new staff, so treat them right and be fair.

Retail Sales Staff - How to Get the Best from Your EmployeesFirst, be a fair and good manager. There are several management styles, but using one that makes your employees feel valued is what you want. Be a manager who makes sure each employee understands their role in the big picture. Ask for input from the employees on what they are doing and how they can get it done, utilize the best of their talents and knowledge. Employees managed this way tend to feel valued and that they have ownership in the project. They also have a good understanding of the tasks and why they need to be done, partially from the instruction, partially because they are encouraged and valued. Being a good manager will help you get the best from your employees.

Apply your policies evenly and equally to your retail sales staff. Have specific policies about what full time and part time employees can expect. Policies about wages, reviews, raises, time off and other benefits. Publish them in an employee manual so that everyone knows what they are and where they can find them. Then be sure to apply them equally. Nothing causes dis-harmony with a retail sales staff faster than playing favorites with employees.

Next, invest in training. Nothing says to your employees “I value you” more than being willing to help them improve themselves. Providing good training will show your employees that you want them to succeed as well as your business to succeed. Good sales training also includes knowledge about personal improvement. Personal improvement, goal setting and assertiveness are good traits that will help your employees in their work life and their personal life. Caring enough to provide it will speak volumes to them about their value to you.

You can definitely get the best from your employees by using all of the suggestions given. Your retail sales staff and your business will benefit!


 

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This Wireless Sales Training course is like no other computer training program you have seen. Our fresh approach to wireless retail training uses humor, video demonstrations, role-playing exercises, and real world examples to motivate your team, bring consistency to the sales floor, and boost the bottom line!

Tablet Computing Hits the Mainstream – Top Business Uses

Tablet computing has hit the business world and has become mainstream. When tablets first became popular, they were nothing more than a bigger version of your smart phone and an e-reader. Today, they are becoming essential business tools. So what are some of the best apps for business? Here are a few.

Tablet Computing Hits the Mainstream - Top Business UsesMost business uses for tablet computers involve word processing, spreadsheet editing and presentation apps. The top ones combine all three for a seamless productivity.

Documents To Go has been around for some time, but now is a great productivity app for tablets (though maybe not best optimized for tablets). However, it does make your wordprocessing documents, spreadsheets and presentations available for editing.

Google Docs now called Google Drive (Google Drive for Android and Google Drive for iPhone) is a free app that integrates Google’s cloud storage with editing capabilities. Any files stored in Google Drive automatically show up in the app and are continuously synced with other Drive-connected devices. The app also supports live collaboration, meaning you can edit a document simultaneously with other users. The feature works flawlessly; you actually see other users’ edits show up on your tablet in real time and vice versa. While it doesn’t have advanced editing capabilities, you can do basic edits like text color and style, alignment, indention, and bullet points.

The best productivity app out there in our humble opinion is OfficeSuite Pro for Android. It is easy to use, is optimized for tablet computing and gives you all of the editing capabilities you find in Office products for computers. It also can integrate directly with cloud storage accounts from Google Docs, Dropbox, Box, and SugarSync. It supports Word documents, Excel documents and Powerpoint documents. It can also be utilized as a PDF reader.

Retail businesses can use the above for reports, but they can also use their tablets as point of sale registers using apps that follow the sales process from beginning to end. Providers like retailing30.com provide apps for tablets that make them essential to retail businesses and make tablet computing more than something to play games on.


 

Retailing Cloud Based Retail Solutions
Cloud Based Retail Solutions
RBD Retail 3.0 Solutions are a set of enterprise, cloud-based solutions for the mobile workforce that delivers powerful ERP, CRM, HRM, eLearning and Reporting modules to sales associates in the field, executives, management and back-office personnel. Find out more about our Retailing 3.0 business solutions

Retail Employee Outsourcing – Cutting Costs Without Cutting Staff!

Retail employee outsourcing sounds ominous, but it’s a great way to cut costs without downsizing, try something new, or take on a project without the risk of a new hire that you may or may not need later. Outsourcing doesn’t have to be a dirty political word, keeping your current employees doing the core job that makes your business run can be at the heart of it.

Retail Employee Outsourcing - Cutting Costs Without Cutting Staff!

Outsourcing new projects can be a smart solution for new business ventures or projects in an existing business. Hiring employees in a brand new business or to take on these new projects may leave you with liabilities if you find that your business isn’t ready to have employees, or when the project is done. But using a temp service may not give you the expertly trained people you need to handle the project.

So what to do? Find a company that has trained, efficient people who can do the job for you: a company like Retail Business Development. RBD can give you customized solutions from complete, turn-key services, to project-based initiatives. Doing so will mean you are in a better place than when you started. You have trained people doing the new stuff, and your equally trained employees doing the job you need to continue to keep the business afloat. This really helps in cutting costs.

A retail employee outsourcing company like RBD can provide solutions that mean you can do many things, like expand into new markets; launch new retail ventures; try out new retail concepts; improve your market; launch new programs and come up with flexibile solutions that are a perfect fit for your business as well as cutting costs.

Need help with business planning, finding a new location for a new store, design and opening that new location, training staff or marketing? Outsourcing will do those tasks and more.

Retail employee outsourcing is a good solution for your business!


 

Retail Store Outsourcing ProgramsRetail Store Outsourcing Programs

Need some extra manpower to get the job done? Don’t want to do it yourself? Need extra capacity to grow? Want to focus on your core competencies? Need to get it done faster? RBD can help. We offer customized Retail Store Outsourcing Solutions for retail business. From complete, turn-key services, to project-based initiatives.