As many as 11,000 people in Britain are set to lose their jobs after administrators failed to find a buyer for troubled retailer BHS. Administrator Duff & Phelps say last ditch rescue bids failed to raise enough working capital to secure a deal and that BHS' 163 shops will close and be sold off to other retailers. Duff & Phelps says 8,000 permanent employees are likely to lose their jobs, together with 3,000 others not directly employed by BHS. Philip Duffy, managing director of Duff & Phelps, says that these are turbulent times for retailers and that "BHS has fallen as another victim of the seismic shifts we are seeing." BHS went into administration in April, leaving behind a 571 million pound ( 825 million) pension black hole.
Many small and independent retailers find that big markdowns don't motivate people to shop at their stores or websites. Or, they can't afford to use them -- unlike national chains, they don't have the high volume of sales allowing them to slash prices without hurting earnings. Retailers who want their stores to have a certain cachet also believe slashing prices may lessen their appeal. And some store owners don't want to play cat and mouse with customers, continually lowering prices until shoppers finally buy. Those who do give holiday markdowns often make them modest, or limit them to big days like Small Business Saturday or Cyber Monday.
If you look closely, the big time online retailer websites have a lot in common. One of those being that they spend a lot of cash testing to improve conversion rates. Come even closer and you will start to see patterns in what they are doing to increase these rates. I've compiled 5 of them and you can say thank you later. Lesson 1 - Reduce the customers risk People are really scared these days of the lack of privacy online provides.
Even as retailers are counting on a lift from a better economy, they're looking beyond economic data and mapping out ways to pick up sales from other retailers as Amazon expands its reach. That can mean opening earlier than rivals on the holidays or even jumping into new product categories. The fight for market share comes as analysts at Bain say Amazon is expected to take half of the holiday season's sales growth. And Amazon is the top destination for people to begin holiday shopping, according to a September study by market research firm NPD Group.