Morning Brew - ☕ Thrive and dime

Why many chains are surviving and thriving.
June 05, 2024

Retail Brew


It’s Wednesday. From deeper customer insights to efficient ops + decision-making, bringing AI into your CX strategy is a no-brainer. Join us tomorrow, June 6, to learn how AI transforms the retail space. RSVP here.

In today’s edition:

—Alex Vuocolo, Erin Cabrey


Apocalypse Then

Family Dollar and Dollar Tree Jeff Greenberg/Getty Images

Early in the pandemic, some predicted that a “retail apocalypse” would soon deal a serious blow to the brick-and-mortar model, with one 2021 UBS report even predicting that more than 80,000 stores would close within the next five years.

Three years later, such prophecies appear overblown—but not entirely without merit.

According to the latest data from Coresight Research, there were 3,238 retail closings and 3,761 openings in the US this year as of May 20. That means openings are still outpacing closings (which is good news) but closures are up 23.4% and openings are down 5.5% compared to the same period last year (which is bad news).

This might not qualify as an “apocalypse”—maybe more of a localized disaster—but it’s clear retailers are going through something. Here’s a closer look at which stores are thriving, which are surviving, and which are experiencing their own private doomsdays.

Dollar stores and pharmacies: Leading the pack in brick-and-mortar closures are two clear frontrunners: pharmacies and dollar stores.

Keep reading here.AV



In the thick of it


Poof! And just like that, it’s already June. We’re halfway through 2024, and that means it’s time to check the charts and see if you’re on track to crush your goals.

Numbers got you sweating? No worries. Listrak can help.

Their unified digital marketing platform does pretty much everything. It powers email, SMS, identity resolution, and push notifications. Prepare to say goodbye to siloes and clunky flows, too. With Listrak, expect unified customer data and seamless cross-channel flows.

Listrak’s customers are loud and proud. Retailers and brands of all sizes—we’re talkin’ TOMS, LeCreuset, Untuckit—are partnering with ’em and scaling their marketing to heights unrivaled.

Upgrade your marketing mojo.


On your own

Basically Gopuff private label owned brand Gopuff

Catering to inflation-wary consumers seeking value, many retailers in recent months have been going private—label, that is—with new CPG brand launches, line extensions, and price drops. It’s a trend so hot even Ace Hardware debuted its own brand of sauces and seasonings. Here are the most notable recent moves to know about:

Gopuff last week introduced Basically Premium, an elevated take on its Basically private label line it debuted in January 2022. While its original line contains products like bottled water, toilet paper, and basic snacks, the new line features items such as gluten-free beef sticks, caramel cheddar popcorn, freeze-dried candy, and mini ice cream cones.

The brand is also extending its Basically line with offerings including puppy pads, paper plates, and cookie bites, with sparkling waters and baby wipes among launches slated for later this year. Gopuff also said it redesigned the branding across its private label portfolio to make it more recognizable for consumers on the app.

The rapid delivery company said it’s seen a 70% YoY increase in private label product purchases, which customers include in 20% of orders.

Target said it’s dropping prices across 5,000 items, including those in its Good & Gather and Everspring brands. Earlier this year, the retailer debuted Dealworthy, its new private label spanning everything from boxer briefs to paper plates, while also expanding and reformulating its Up&Up brand.

Keep reading here.EC



Coworking with Foujan Volk

Foujan Volk Parachute headshot Foujan Volk

On Wednesdays, we wear pink spotlight Retail Brew’s readers. Want to be featured in an upcoming edition? Click here to introduce yourself.

Foujan Volk is VP of brand and marketing at home furnishing brand Parachute.

How would you describe your job to someone who doesn’t work in retail? When people choose their favorite brands, they do so instinctively. It is more of a feeling than a conscious choice. That reflex is a memory that is built by winning and retaining people’s attention. Why do people wear Nike shoes or use iPhones or drive Teslas? My job is to be singularly focused on connecting the customer to our brand—creating these brand affinities that build contextual recall and keep the Parachute brand relevant, aspirational, and engaging.

One thing we can’t guess about your job from your LinkedIn profile? The DTC environment is constantly evolving at an often dizzying pace. This constant evolution has kept me growing, forcing me and our team to live in this gray space where we’re regularly changing strategies to meet the moment. We wear so many hats, the scope to our roles is so fluid, and that keeps me on my toes and lets me flex and learn in ways that would not be possible at larger organizations or in different industries.

What’s your favorite project you’ve worked on? In 2023, we produced The Parachute Holiday Village: a European-style holiday market with snowfall and lots of holiday shopping. Forty-plus brands participated and 5,000 members of the LA community joined in, garnering 500 million media impressions to cut through the noise in a chaotic promo-heavy season.

Keep reading here.




Hit your CPA goals. Tired of unpredictable CPA increases from search + Meta? Meet Nift—an alternative performance marketing channel for DTC customer acquisition. With over 50m active shoppers exploring products on their network, Nift delivers high conversion and lasting value at unbeatable costs. Learn more today.


Today’s top retail reads.

Once and done: When it comes to consumer spending, the late-pandemic YOLO mindset is no more. (CNN)

Stock market: Chronicling the storied history of Birkenstock, the 250-year-old German shoe maker that’s become a luxury brand. (Bloomberg)

Sweet talk: In New York City, the “hype bakery”—whose menus are laced with viral portmanteaus like “cronuts” and “cruffins”—has become a city institution. (Grubstreet)

Silo smasher: Isn’t it time to bring all your flows and channels together? Listrak is ready. Their seamless digital marketing platform can help get you unified in no time. Start here.*

*A message from our sponsor.


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