NRF Retail Converge: Day 3 highlights

Strengthening store sentiment and focusing on emotional health
Listen to a recap of Day 3

SAP’s Future of Consumer and Retail podcast

NRF Retail Converge continues this week with sessions featuring leaders from retailers across the industry.

Sam's Club is positioning its stores as showrooms with member experience at the center, said President and CEO Kath McLay in a discussion with Rodney Sides, global leader of Deloitte insights and vice chairman, US retail and distribution Leader at Deloitte LLP. Tech tools like Sam's Club's app create value for members by memorizing purchase history, reminding them of items they need to repurchase and recommending new items.

Kohl's CEO Michelle Gass discussed the value of the store now and what the Kohl's store of the future will look like. “For us, the stores are key, we are thinking about them differently. They are an omnichannel hub,” said Gass. Gass also disclosed the retailer's appeal that attracted partnerships like Sephora, Amazon and other retail partners.

When Mark Tritton became Bed Bath & Beyond President and CEO, the customer was not at the center of company strategy. That has since changed as the retailer improved messaging and presentation, store layout, simplified checkout and more.

Circular economy and delivery is here to stay — in an affordable way

When it comes to ultra-fast on-demand delivery, are retailers meeting customer expectations of "fast"? Shipt CEO Kelly Caruso discussed her company's partnership with CVS Health and how Shipt is getting to know its customers to deliver more of what matters.

The recommerce industry is booming as more and more consumers seek the opportunity to return items they no longer need or exchange them for other items.

In the session "LEGO, Tailored Brands and PepsiCo on the new connected economy," experts said building meaningful brand experiences begin with providing customers with choice and the ability to curate their experiences, whether this is through apparel or educational resources.

The pandemic resulted in more online shopping, more spending, more often and in more places, said Rachel Dalton, director of ecommerce and omnichannel Insights at Kantar, who was joined by Rose Jia, Amazon's head of growth marketing. The experts discussed how Amazon is gaining trust in the online grocery market with a demographic used to touching, smelling and interacting with their food in-store.

In the quest to rein in organized retail theft, loss prevention experts talked about sophisticated ORC that retailers should know about, contributions to spikes in retail theft and where the items are going.

In the Equality Lounge: Don’t forget about mental health and employee well-being

What can companies do to promote mental health? How do employees like to be supported? What are their preferences and how are companies incorporating wellness into company culture? It all starts with understanding everyone's baseline of health and utilizing emotional intelligence, said M. Gemi President Cheryl Kaplan.

“I think it’s important to make connecting and understanding your team part of your business,” said Tina Fan, chief customer officer at Bolt. “Sharing stories can be really powerful especially for leadership because we can exemplify openness around our own struggles."

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