In 2017, China's department store sector witnessed a positive rebound with some signs of stable recovery. After consecutive years of lackluster sales and dropping profitability, the sector as a whole has started to reap the benefits of business upgrading and transformation.
The majority of department store operators have stepped up efforts to construct omni-channel business models, optimize supply chain systems, enrich merchandise and service portfolios, explore new retail formats and enhance customer experience. They have actively deployed new technologies to meet the rapidly changing consumer needs.
In 2017, China's physical retail sector saw a positive rebound with some signs of stable recovery. Meanwhile, some leading department store operators, especially those that keep on innovating, actively optimize their products and services, embrace O2O strategies, and leverage technologies to improve operational efficiency and enhance customer experience, have benefited from the results of business upgrading and transformation.
On the other hand, some key Internet companies have successfully extended their online dominance into physical retail by setting up offline stores or by merging with or acquiring physical retailers. Their successful brick-and-mortar strategies have created new business models and inspired retail practitioners to transform their businesses in the "New Retail" era.
Key Topics Covered:
I. Market Overview
1. Overview of China's retail market
2. Overview of China's department store sector
II. New developments and key trends
1. Pursuing omni-channel retailing
2. Diversifying retail formats and tapping into other business sectors to achieve synergy
3. Enriching and expanding self-operated business to enhance product uniqueness and gross profit margins
4. Improving supply chain management and focusing on the basics of retailing
5. Promoting cooperation with all stakeholders along the supply chain
III. Major issues and challenges
1. Business transformation requires fundamental changes in business mindset and mechanism
2. Supply chain integration is needed for successful transformation
3. Obstacles to engaging in merchandise direct sales
IV. Implications and conclusion
1. Optimizing merchandising and enriching offerings in response to consumption upgrading
2. Venturing into O2O retailing with constant business model innovations
3. Advocating consumer-centric business transformation and focusing on the basics of retailing
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