By Eliana Barriga
Publisher and Managing Editor for The Retail Observer
This is our 100th issue! We took over The Retail Observer in 2007 and before we were able to put away our party hats, the economy crashed. Since then, we have watched the industry undergo a complete metamorphosis.
Some of you may know that before caterpillars morph into butterflies, their bodies literally “melt” almost completely inside their cocoons. Then the new body of the butterfly is formed pulling from this nutrient rich soup of enzymes. Crazy, but it’s true!
And this is exactly what manufacturers did to survive when the economy crashed. They cocooned into R&D and began building and investing in products for the future, so they would be ready to come out in splendor when the economy turned around. That’s why the marketplace is now experiencing a rebirth of exciting, new, colorful, product lines.
And savvy retailers did the same thing. Instead of becoming frozen and paralyzed from the sudden drop in sales, they cleaned up their operations so that they could run more efficiently and still turn a profit. Most importantly, they upgraded outdated systems, implemented new sales technology and got more connected with their existing customers online, learning how to market to the Millennials in this fast paced, high-tech cyber world.
We now find ourselves rounding the corner in 2015. And depending on who you talk to, the prognosis that our economy has fully recovered or that we may be limping into another meltdown; either way, the businesses that are thriving today are not the same as they were in 2007. They have been transformed and are stronger and more resilient than ever before.
And we are just as ready to share in this changing landscape we call “retail” with you for another 100 issues.
Bring it on!