Publix, Safeway, Whole Foods Market, Albertsons and Kroger were all named as the food retailer of choice among shoppers in several states, according to a list compiled by mobile app Foursquare. The list detailed the most popular food retailer in each US state and Washington, D.C.
Amazon has announced that the Echo is now available in more than 80 new markets, though it does not appear that the company will localize the devices for each market before making them available for purchase. With the smart speaker market expected to hit $13 billion by 2024, it appears that Echo is reversing the process of shipping and localizing in an effort to reach more consumers quickly.
US-based furniture retailer West Elm opened its second UK store this month and plans to add more London area locations next year, said Ron Young of parent Williams Sonoma. The retailer's mid-century style resonates with London consumers, whose tastes are similar to those of New Yorkers, he said.
British supermarket chains the Co-op and Iceland are backing a proposed deposit return program for plastic bottles to encourage recycling and cut down on plastic waste in the environment. Several countries including Australia and Denmark that have such programs in place see higher rates of plastic bottle recycling.
German discount grocer Lidl has slowed its expansion plans in the US, with plans to put the opening of its second New Jersey store on hold and the cancellation of some store openings in Virginia, Pennsylvania and Ohio, according to reports. Lidl opened its first store in the US in June to much fanfare, but traffic to the stores has since slowed, experts said.
Many beauty brands turned to diversity and inclusivity in their marketing this year. Covergirl featured more men, older women and women of color in 2017 campaigns, while brands including MAC Cosmetics have come out with genderless makeup lines promoted by influencers including Patrick Starrr and Caitlyn Jenner.
Beauty apps have gained a higher profile in retail this year, with YouCam Makeup winning Google Play's Most Innovative App award and ModiFace being named one of Apple's App Store Best for 2017. MAC Cosmetics recently added ModiFace-powered mirrors to its stores, and YouCam Makeup's magic mirrors will come to 49 more Macy's locations for the holidays.
Retailers including Macy's, J.C. Penney and Kohl's are making their promotional programs easier for consumers to understand, after years of layering discounts and deals. "You shouldn't need a Ph.D. in math to figure out our prices," said Greg Revelle, Kohl's chief marketing officer.
Chocolate, house guests, holiday plants and decorations pose a threat to pet health during the winter holidays, and pet owners must take steps to protect their four-legged companions. Chocolate, mistletoe, holly, sugar-free gum and medications can be toxic if ingested; fragile ornaments can cut tender paws, and tinsel can cause gastrointestinal injury.
The growth of e-commerce and demand for speedy delivery has made inventory management even more complicated for fashion brands and retailers. High-end brands are increasingly turning to high-tech tools and data to track products through the supply chain and avoid excess inventory.