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This Holiday Season Will Challenge Assumptions

by Robert Hetu  |  December 11, 2014  |  2 Comments

There are more than a few highly disruptive changes taking place in retail, as to this there is no doubt. Cyber Monday exploded. Total Thanksgiving weekend spending declined 11% to $50.9 billion this year, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF). Stores saw about 6 million fewer shoppers than expected. Retailers extended black-Friday from a single day into a month long event. While overall the season looks promising as the NRF said it still expects sales to grow 4.1%, this holiday season consumers are challenging retail paradigms about when, where and how they shop.

Over the course of 2014 my research agenda evolved around the changes required in merchandising to allow multichannel retailers to grow and thrive in the consumerized retail marketplace. For ease of reference I have gathered my 2014 research grouped under headings that help facilitate Gartner client research. In 2015 I will continue to dig deeper into these topics as we look at the digital business revolution.

2014 Research Recap DocCode
Price Strategy/Management/Optimization  
Market Guide for Unified Price, Promotion and Markdown Optimization Applications 262132
Multichannel Retail Pricing Strategies That Separate Winners From Losers 255505
Managing/Optimizing/Assortments  
Magic Quadrant for Merchandise Assortment Management Applications 262557
Assortment Management Is Now a Core Merchandising Application for Multichannel Retailers 262085
Retail Assortment Rationalization Falls Short; Optimization Delivers Sales and Profits 231837
Personalization/Feedback  
Delivering on Personalization Requires Advanced Merchandise Segmentation and Consistent Communications 263147
Survey Analysis: Continuous Loop Merchandise Feedback Programs Require Responses and Rewards for Customers 262080
Trends/Predictions/Cool Vendors  
Cool Vendors in Retail, 2014 262084
Predicts 2015: Retail Digital Commerce Stays Low, Crowdstorming Leads Innovation, In-Moment Pricing Drives Personalization, and Augmented Reality Rallies 271082

Gartner 2014

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Category: merchandising-process  pricing-policy  retail-analytics  retail-trends  

Tags: assortment  competition  consumers  customer-analytics  customer-centricity  digital  ecommerce  economy  merchandising  multichannel  omni-channel  personalization  price-transparency  pricing  retail  trends  

Robert Hetu
VP, Analyst Retail
7 years at Gartner
29 years IT Industry

Bob Hetu is a Research Director with the Gartner Retail Industry Services team. His responsibilities involve tracking the technology markets and trends impacting the broad-based retail merchandising and planning areas. Mr. Hetu is an expert in the areas of brand, vendor and assortment management, merchandise planning, allocation, and replenishment. Read Full Bio


Thoughts on This Holiday Season Will Challenge Assumptions


  1. […] There are more than a few highly disruptive changes taking place in retail, as to this there is no doubt. Cyber Monday exploded.  […]



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