February 2, 2014 |
Nordstrom is famously forgiving when shoppers change their minds about purchases. Customers love it - especially those whose motives may be questionable. The Seattle retailer has been known to take back well-worn clothing, shoes bought years earlier and jars of half-used moisturizer. When Elana Pruitt was a Nordstrom sales employee years ago, she recalled, shoppers would make purchases with gift cards and then quickly return the items for cash. Technically it's allowed, said Pruitt, 33, now a social media coordinator and fashion blogger in Eagle Rock.
January 23, 2014 |
Google Inc. is wading into the morass of same-day delivery pilots and programs rapidly collecting in the Southland, competing with e-commerce giants such as Amazon.com Inc. In the first expansion of a test it launched in the Bay Area in the spring, Google is inviting its employees in the Santa Monica area to try out its Google Shopping Express service. Several hundred people work for the company in the Los Angeles area. Google hopes to eventually extend the service to the general public.
January 16, 2014 |
It's not looking pretty for J.C. Penney. The Plano, Texas, company said this week that it plans to close 33 under-performing stores around the country by early May and shave 2,000 jobs off its books. Chief Executive Myron Ullman called the move - designed to save the company $65 million a year - a key step in J.C. Penney's "progress toward long-term profitable growth. " Several analysts, however, say it's a sign that the retailer's turnaround may be more like a turndown. "J.C.
January 10, 2014 |
Target customers whose information -- name, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses -- was stolen need not have shopped at the retailer's stores during the busy holiday shopping season, a spokeswoman confirmed Friday. The information, said Target spokeswoman Molly Snyder, was collected during the "course of normal business," and could include online shopping. Friday's latest disclosure by the Minneapolis-based retailer that hackers made away with the data of 70 million additional Target customers shows that the data breach late last year was far larger and broader than previously thought. Target initially said Dec. 19 that debit and credit card information for 40 million customers was pilfered during the busy holiday shopping season between Nov. 27 and Dec. 15. About a week later, the retailer also reported that the hackers had accessed "strongly encrypted" personal identification numbers when they tapped into the retailer's systems. The retailer said the theft of the information from up to 110 million customers was not a new breach but was uncovered as part of the ongoing investigation into the theft of millions of customers' credit and debit card information.
January 8, 2014 |
Santa slacked off during the holidays, delivering a solidly so-so season for retailers. Shoppers were less impressed and more careful during the season compared with the previous one, doing their research before picking through shelves of uninspiring and often deeply discounted merchandise, according to a flurry of data, estimates and analyst notes released this week. Consumers spent $265.9 billion at stores during November and December, causing sales to rise 2.7% from a year earlier, according to initial results from data firm ShopperTrak.
January 6, 2014 |
On New Year's Day, Los Angeles became the biggest city in the United State to ban plastic bags. Mayhem was anticipated. OK, not mayhem. Just extreme agitation. "If they don't give me a bag, what am I going to do?" The Times quoted an "incredulous" William Macary as saying at a Wal-Mart back in June. "If I pay money, I want a bag. " I feel for him. If I pay money, I want a pony. And a car. And those $350 Italian shirts I lust for when I go to Vegas. YEAR IN REVIEW: Ted Rall's five best cartoons of 2013 Believe it or not, plastic bags were originally introduced as the eco-friendly alternative to paper bags.