When will retailers like The Limited learn?

Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share

11 January 2017

Retailers need serious new thinking

And another one bites the dust. Goodbye, The Limited. The retailer has closed all of its brick and mortar locations as of Sunday.

The Limited joins a long list of failed retailers. Also this week, Hudson Bay, owners of Saks Fifth Avenue and Lord and Taylor among others, announced weaker than expected holiday sales. Specialty retailer, Ascena (Lane Bryant, Ann Taylor, Catherine’s, Justice) did the same.

“Retailers must read the pulse of the consumer. They must usher in the latest fashions and trends. However, retailers are stuck in the past while the consumer is changing.”

And this was in the wake of a strong holiday retail sales season.

The LimitedWhen will these retailers see the writing on the wall?

Retailers like The Limited are the frog

Ever hear the anecdote about the frog in boiling water? If you put a frog in a pot of water and turn up the heat, the frog will stay in the water and die from gradually being boiled.

Retailers, you are the frog. You have done nothing while the pot of water was heating up.

Yes, I am tough on the retailing sector but I have good cause. I’ve said it before and I will keep saying it until the industry wakes up. Retail has failed the consumer for too long and the chickens have come home to roost.

Iconic brands such as Sears, Macy’s, Kmart, JC Penney, The Limited, and Saks Fifth Avenue are dying on the vine. Brands with near universal awareness are failing to build preference. Where is the connection with the consumer? Why should the consumer care about any of them?

The consumer has changed. Retailers must read the pulse of the consumer. They must usher in the latest fashions and trends. However, retailers are stuck in the past while the consumer is changing. They rely on what they have always done to magically fix the results of what they have always done.

I just wonder how many more iconic brands such as The Limited will die before the industry wakes up. Probably, many more.

See more posts in the following related categories: Ann Taylor JC Penney Justice KMart Lane Bryant Macy's Retail Saks Fifth Avenue Sears The Limited

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