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Retail industry sees modest gains in Q2

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RET_003The retail sectors in the United States and Europe saw improving sales during the second quarter of 2013.  In the U.S., retail landlords saw declining vacancies in retail space.

To entice purchases, some retail chains are offering online price-matching designed to keep value-conscious customers given the state of the economy.

Nadine Sharara of U.K.-based retailer Thomas Pink is optimistic that the industry will continue to improve for the rest of 2013.  “We’re optimistic for retail for the rest of 2013,” says Sharara, who serves as head of e-commerce. “Consumers are beginning to spend again and we’re confident Thomas Pink are in a position to take advantage of that through our Single Customer View approach.”

Thomas Pink is aggressively pursuing business by offering clothing discounts for online shoppers.  Additionally, it is offering free shipping within the U.K. for Internet orders exceeding $75 (USD).  The company believes that stores and retail chains that have an online presence should focus on the user experience.

“If you’re a retailer, [be] willing to embrace multi-channel and [recognize] [that] the customer views your website, stores and apps as one and [they demand] a consistent experience throughout,” says Sharara.

Thomas Pink has more than 100 stores across the globe.  It is looking to boost Internet-based orders by offering discounts such as 50 percent off on men’s and women’s clothing.

The U.S. Commerce Department recently reported that May retail sales increased over April, putting them 4.3 percent higher over 2012.

Despite the uptick in retail business, landlords still face uncertainty due to competition from Internet-based retailers. However, many stores are adding products and services not easily delivered through online purchases.

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