App happenings, cheese subscriptions, and everything else you need to know in today’s retail world.

  1. Adappting to Shopify 

Shopify is now a $40 billion-dollar company. As it has scaled and expanded so ferociously in the past year, its app partners have had to rapidly shift and adapt in order to keep up.

Last year, Shopify relaunched its App Store to allow for easier navigation of its growing ecosystem. It also rolled out software integrations that are designed to assist growing DTC brands, solidly stepping into their platform to help online retailers grow.

However, some platforms are not on board. Mailchimp announced a rather public split from Shopify after Shopify said Mailchimp’s data acquisition methods didn’t match Shopify’s standards, and Mailchimp came back stating that Shopify’s new app terms had negative business impacts.

Shopify is working to provide as many solutions as possible for its clients, and its partners have to make quick decisions about whether they want to be fully on board. Some app makers now view Shopify as a competitor when they used to view it as a partner, thought Shopify disagrees and has hopes for integrated companies to scale together.

[Modern Retail]

  1. If the shoe fits

Professor Scott Galloway took to Twitter to explain why Nike’s recurring revenue bundle (or “rundle,” as is our favorite acronym of 2019), is such a smart retail move. Nike is joining the subscription movement, and Galloway reminded his followers that subscription services are, at this point, an objectively wise retail move, but that they’re especially smart for clothing and shoe companies. 

Parents, for example, can purchase a shoe subscription that will automatically send a new pair of kicks to their children (whose feet tend to grow rather rapidly). They’ve tied it to an app that helps users find their perfect shoe size, and it’s projected to be overall an excellent move for the shoe retailer.

[Twitter]

  1. Say Cheese

Shoes aren’t the only hot subscription du jour. As Minute Hack explored, subscriptions are no longer only supplying consumers with the things they already want — they’re encouraging them to explore other goods they might never have thought of needing. Like a monthly supply of cheese.

Driven by grocery delivery, consumers are increasingly interested in the excitement and intrigue of new food choices just happening to them in subscription boxes. Wines, cheeses, and other treats they might not think to choose on their own are provided like monthly gifts, expanding customers’ palettes all the while. Two percent of the UK’s cheese market is projected to exist online within the next five years, which will amount to roughly 52 million pounds in revenue.

[Minute Hack]

  1. When one door closes,  another five open

According to recent research from the IHL, retail is hardly dead — in fact, it’s thriving. 

The IHL Group found that for every retail store that’s closed its doors this year, more than five are opening shop. Additionally, the number of chains adding storefronts in 2019 has increased by 56 percent, while the number of closing stores has decreased by 66 percent in the last year.

“U.S. retail has increased $565 billion in sales since January of 2017, fed not just by online sales growth but net store sales growth,” Lee Holman, VP of research told CSA. “Clearly there is significant pressure in apparel and department stores, however, in every single retail segment there are more chains that are expanding their number of stores than closing stores.”

As more and more research points to exactly the opposite of a retail apocalypse, we should expect those same stores to embrace the undisputed benefits of recurring revenue programs.  

[CSA]

  1. If you build it, they will come

Finally, in terms of scaling, Texas supermarket powerhouse H-E-B has announced the addition of 500 new jobs in its soon-to-open brand new Austin headquarters which will handle the production of all things H-E-B digital, the grocery hub’s e-commerce and tech center.

 “Our success starts with our people, who provide exceptional hospitality to deliver world-class shopping and digital experiences,” Craig Boyan, H-E-B President, said in a news release. “We’re committed to hiring more people, adding the necessary skills to become both a better tech company and even stronger brick-and-mortar retailer.”

[Silicon Hills]