Saturday, June 11, 2005

Retail Success Story: Perfume Bay

How's this for a retailing success story? An immigrant family starts by helping selling perfume and cosmetics at a local swap meet. They get their own flea market booth, then take out a lease on a store. Then 2 stores and a wholesale operation. Next came Internet retailing. The online store grossed more than $6 million in 2004.

That's the growth path followed by the Tran family and Perfume Bay. Read about them on CNNMoney.

Perfume Bay's Jacqueline Tran

Juice worth the squeeze

Rick Segel has a blog with real nuts-and-bolts tips on running a retail business. Rick is the author of Retail Business Kit for Dummies and is an excellent speaker.

His latest blog entry is titled "Is the juice worth the squeeze?" The article is definitely "juice" worth the squeeze. Give it a look.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Retail Success: Costco in Canada

The Globe and Mail has an article about how Costco breaks the rules of retailing ... and profits from it. It offers little customer service and few product choices; it piles products high on pallets and doesn't bother to mine the customer data it collects.

Costco has warehouse-style stores, an unpredictable stock of often unique, upscale items, low prices and membership fees for the privilege of shopping at the stores.

There are profits to be made with a wide variety of retail business strategies. Success is in the execution. Small retailers will do better to learn from how well Costco treats its employees than from its low price strategy. Little guys will find it hard to survive in the discount, commodity product world.