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Welcome to a new week. We’ve got a quick look back at the NRF Big Show to kick things off. Then, this week brings plenty of opportunities to gain insight into the state of the consumer. Colgate Palmolive, Johnson & Johnson, Kimberly-Clark and Levi Strauss will report earnings. Meanwhile, new economic data will offer a look at GDP and inflation.
NRF Big Show takeaways
Industry events are taking a breather this week after the NRF Big Show and Winter Fancy Foods Show kicked off the tradeshow year with high energy. With this week providing a chance to reflect and catch up following all of the activity, we’ll take a moment to share three takeaways from the NRF Big Show:
What does omnichannel mean now? The pandemic brought the spike in ecommerce, and last year featured the return to stores. Technology that connects the two is still called omnichannel, but a lot has changed over the last few years. Think: Googling "In stock near me," Buy Online, Pickup in Store. Building technology for in-person shopping that has digital touchpoints feels more important. Should we still call it omnichannel?
Profitability over growth. With a tougher economic environment expected this year, there's more priority on building loyalty with existing customers, and tightening up operations. We've had three years of swings and adjustment to huge changes. This year, there's an opportunity to pick which of the new approaches stick, and fine-tune to make them work for the long haul.
Composable commerce is everywhere. Retailers used to build custom ecommerce systems. Now, more technology is being built that allows them to choose the best pieces for their needs. Composable commerce is growing not only for customer-facing functions in the shopping experience, but also on the fulfillment and supply chain side. Leaders believe this technology must be built to allow for continuing change as new advances are developed.
The Current will continue to roll out interviews and analysis from the Big Show for the rest of January. Subscribe to The Daily Current newsletter to get the latest in your inbox.
Gross Domestic Product: The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis releases the Q4 2022 growth rate of GDP, which is the top measure of economic activity. This includes consumer spending, and any growth or decline is a primary indicator of whether demand for goods is remaining strong. In Q3, GDP grew 3.2%. 8:30 a.m., Jan. 26
Durable Goods Orders: The U.S. Commerce Department releases data for December on manufacturer orders and shipments of goods that are meant to last three years or more. This is an indicator of demand for larger-ticket purchases. 8:30 a.m., Jan. 26
Personal Consumption Expenditures: The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis releases data on consumer spending, savings and inflation for December 2022. This is the measure of inflation watched by the Federal Reserve and many economists.
Consumer Sentiment: The University of Michigan releases final data on consumer buying plans and economic expectations in January. In the initial reading, sentiment rose to its highest level since April as more people see inflation beginning to fall.
Friday, Jan. 27: Colgate Palmolive
Trending in Economy
LadderUp is aiming for 50% LGBTQ+ and BIPOC participation. Shopify will provide access to its platform.
Shipt is launching a new accelerator program designed to provide ecommerce tools for local retailers.Called LadderUp, the program is centered on equity. Target-owned delivery owned Shipt said conversations with business owners have revealed that local entrepreneurs face “gaps” in technology, but they also want to participate in ecommerce platforms. The COVID-19 pandemic was especially difficult for Black business owners, who saw earnings drop between 11-28% in 2019-2020, as compared to the earnings decrease of 5-17% for the rest of the population.
With the new program, the company’s goal is to reach at least 50% LGBTQ+ and BIPOC participation in the program.
Shipt is aiming to serve businesses in Atlanta, Birmingham, Alabama, Detroit, Houston and Washington, D.C.
Target categories include: grocery/beverage, health, beauty, and floral/gifts retailers.
“Working with small businesses to build up their capabilities is a key part of our commitment to help create healthier, more resilient and equitable communities,” said CEO Kamau Witherspoon. “We recognize the unique role that we can play in both combating hunger in under-resourced communities and boosting small, local retailers that are so vital to communities across our country.”
What will entrepreneurs receive?
Education: Business owners who are selected will receive an 8-week course with industry leaders that covers business-building topics including finances, efficiency, marketing, ecommerce 101, the basics of using Shipt, and legal knowledge.
Funding: Upon completion, retailers will provide $5,000 for businesses to invest in ecommerce.
Shopify access: Shopify, which is partnering with Shipt, is also providing to its access for a limited amount of time to help business owners build an online storefront and manage inventory. The program will also provide technical assistance.Applications are open Feb. 6- March 6.