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The Official Sears & Kmart Thread (& General Retail Discussion)

TwilightZone

Well-Known Member
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They started out as a "store within a store" type deal and there were rumors the physical stores were coming back this year.
Hopefully they can figure out ways to make these stores work!
 

iHeartDisneylandCats

Proud Member Since 2016
Original Poster
I had a crazy idea that has a 0% chance of happening, but it would be fun if it did. Disney should buy Sears and convert the stores in good locations into Disney Quests. Most Sears locations are in large mall anchors, so it wouldn't be impossible for it to happen. They could offer jobs to most of the Sears employees as well. It won't ever happen but it would be awesome.
 

Smiley/OCD

Well-Known Member
Toys R Us is apparently coming back here very soon. WHen that is, I have no idea.
Yes, it IS true...Toys R Us is coming bask in the U.S., It will be run by many of the same people that were there before the chain closed...looks like it will be kinda the same free standing stores they had before. I'm sure the toy makers are VERY happy since, with the exception of Mattel, they all had horrible Christmas seasons. I look forward to walking the aisles again! Yes, I'm a Toys R Us (and Disney) kid!!!
 

Goofyernmost

Well-Known Member
Yes, it IS true...Toys R Us is coming bask in the U.S., It will be run by many of the same people that were there before the chain closed...looks like it will be kinda the same free standing stores they had before. I'm sure the toy makers are VERY happy since, with the exception of Mattel, they all had horrible Christmas seasons. I look forward to walking the aisles again! Yes, I'm a Toys R Us (and Disney) kid!!!
It kinda makes me think about how we all keep repeating the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
 

Dead2009

Well-Known Member
Yes, it IS true...Toys R Us is coming bask in the U.S., It will be run by many of the same people that were there before the chain closed...looks like it will be kinda the same free standing stores they had before. I'm sure the toy makers are VERY happy since, with the exception of Mattel, they all had horrible Christmas seasons. I look forward to walking the aisles again! Yes, I'm a Toys R Us (and Disney) kid!!!
I worked at Toys R Us the last 2 years of their existence, so I'm excited for it aswell.
 

UncleMike101

Well-Known Member
For the first half of Sears-Roebuck's existence only a small percentage of their customers set eyes on a Sears-Roebuck store.
They were the first Amazon, even though they relied on snail mail, and were wildly successful at it.
Ordering from the Sears catalog was an American ritual and enjoyed by millions of people who lived outside of the major cities.
Opening hundreds of brick & mortar locations eventually made them a "browser" store and people were as likely to leave the store empty handed as they were to purchase something.
The overhead costs of structures and employees and the false belief that indoor malls were the permanent future of retailing, doomed them to eventually fail.
And, as stated by others, Sears thought they were too big to fail and that America would blindly go to their overpriced, understaffed, expansive mall outlets.
If Sears had stayed a "mail order" business and kept up with the times they would still rule the roost.
 

flynnibus

Well-Known Member
For the first half of Sears-Roebuck's existence only a small percentage of their customers set eyes on a Sears-Roebuck store.
They were the first Amazon, even though they relied on snail mail, and were wildly successful at it.
Ordering from the Sears catalog was an American ritual and enjoyed by millions of people who lived outside of the major cities.
Opening hundreds of brick & mortar locations eventually made them a "browser" store and people were as likely to leave the store empty handed as they were to purchase something.
The overhead costs of structures and employees and the false belief that indoor malls were the permanent future of retailing, doomed them to eventually fail.
And, as stated by others, Sears thought they were too big to fail and that America would blindly go to their overpriced, understaffed, expansive mall outlets.
If Sears had stayed a "mail order" business and kept up with the times they would still rule the roost.
Just because retail B&M’s is struggling now, it doesn’t mean it wasn’t the right strategy for the 40 years prior.

The point is you have to keep adapting... and disruption will always be lurking. Staying in place is more deadly
 

iHeartDisneylandCats

Proud Member Since 2016
Original Poster
For the first half of Sears-Roebuck's existence only a small percentage of their customers set eyes on a Sears-Roebuck store.
They were the first Amazon, even though they relied on snail mail, and were wildly successful at it.
Ordering from the Sears catalog was an American ritual and enjoyed by millions of people who lived outside of the major cities.
Opening hundreds of brick & mortar locations eventually made them a "browser" store and people were as likely to leave the store empty handed as they were to purchase something.
The overhead costs of structures and employees and the false belief that indoor malls were the permanent future of retailing, doomed them to eventually fail.
And, as stated by others, Sears thought they were too big to fail and that America would blindly go to their overpriced, understaffed, expansive mall outlets.
If Sears had stayed a "mail order" business and kept up with the times they would still rule the roost.
I agree. Sears could have adapted in the internet era and they could have remained relevant and perhaps even more popular than Amazon.

Another thing that I have been thinking about lately with all the store closures, is that I predict that all retail will be internet based at some point in my life. I'm only in my 20s, so it wouldn't surprise me if over the next several decades I witness many more specialty chains die off due to Walmart, Amazon, etc. I predict with the rise of augmented reality, people will be able to try on clothes and see how furniture would look in their homes without leaving the house. I think delivery times will become nearly instantaneous as well, and when an order is placed it is standard for it to arrive in less than an hour. I even think grocery stores will move this direction. I predict that Walmart will close all brick and mortar stores someday to become an online retailer, with groceries being delivered in less time than it takes now to wander the store buying everything you need. As for all the existing malls and stores, I think they will become housing complexes due to the rapid population growth.
 

Smiley/OCD

Well-Known Member
I agree. Sears could have adapted in the internet era and they could have remained relevant and perhaps even more popular than Amazon.

Another thing that I have been thinking about lately with all the store closures, is that I predict that all retail will be internet based at some point in my life. I'm only in my 20s, so it wouldn't surprise me if over the next several decades I witness many more specialty chains die off due to Walmart, Amazon, etc. I predict with the rise of augmented reality, people will be able to try on clothes and see how furniture would look in their homes without leaving the house. I think delivery times will become nearly instantaneous as well, and when an order is placed it is standard for it to arrive in less than an hour. I even think grocery stores will move this direction. I predict that Walmart will close all brick and mortar stores someday to become an online retailer, with groceries being delivered in less time than it takes now to wander the store buying everything you need. As for all the existing malls and stores, I think they will become housing complexes due to the rapid population growth.
All I can say is, while retail has changed in the last 25 years and is moving in the direction you are talking about, I honestly hope that traditional B & M won't disappear completely in my lifetime...while it can be tedious, I enjoy going to the supermarket...I wanna touch, smell and look at the produce, meat and other items I'm buying. When you're in the market for a new car, don't you actually want to sit in, look at the controls and test drive it BEFORE you buy it? I know that AI is the new reality sweeping the planet in 2019, AR, or actual reality is disappearing in 2019. I want to personally look at the food I'm going to ingest...I want to actually try ON the clothes I'm going to buy and wear, and YES I want to sit in and test drive the vehicle that you now need a home equity loan to buy.

Yes, we're moving in that direction, but you know what's suffering? One on one human interaction...that's something I hope NEVER leaves the planet! If it does, you "young'uns" are sadly doomed.
 

iHeartDisneylandCats

Proud Member Since 2016
Original Poster
All I can say is, while retail has changed in the last 25 years and is moving in the direction you are talking about, I honestly hope that traditional B & M won't disappear completely in my lifetime...while it can be tedious, I enjoy going to the supermarket...I wanna touch, smell and look at the produce, meat and other items I'm buying. When you're in the market for a new car, don't you actually want to sit in, look at the controls and test drive it BEFORE you buy it? I know that AI is the new reality sweeping the planet in 2019, AR, or actual reality is disappearing in 2019. I want to personally look at the food I'm going to ingest...I want to actually try ON the clothes I'm going to buy and wear, and YES I want to sit in and test drive the vehicle that you now need a home equity loan to buy.

Yes, we're moving in that direction, but you know what's suffering? One on one human interaction...that's something I hope NEVER leaves the planet! If it does, you "young'uns" are sadly doomed.
I totally agree with your entire post. While I do predict shopping will mostly become internet based, it will be sad when it happens, because it will make society lazier than ever. It will also take away the human touch you get with traditional retail, and it will also be sad to see many iconic retailers close. I may be in the minority, but I actually enjoy going to the mall, so for me personally it will be sad to lose the ability to do so. I guess I'm just old fashioned.
 

Magicart87

Premium Member
Sears/Kmart just lost sight of their brand. The only redeemer now is name recognition. Maybe they should try their hand at mini shops similar to how Radioshack and KB toys operated, only done *successfully. Change their name back to Sears-Roebuck, make it a themed boutique store, have friendly staff eager to help. What isn't sold in-store; sell at Sears-Roebuck online/mobile or in catalogs.
 

Smiley/OCD

Well-Known Member
I totally agree with your entire post. While I do predict shopping will mostly become internet based, it will be sad when it happens, because it will make society lazier than ever. It will also take away the human touch you get with traditional retail, and it will also be sad to see many iconic retailers close. I may be in the minority, but I actually enjoy going to the mall, so for me personally it will be sad to lose the ability to do so. I guess I'm just old fashioned.

Back in the 80's (when I was in HS), they used to call us mall rats, because we'd hang out on a Friday or Saturday night after the movie in the mall...now, unfortunately, the term mall rat now has 4 legs and a tail, living in one of the empty stores...
 

Magicart87

Premium Member
If Krispy Kreme's HOT light sign is any indication of success I think Kmart stands a chance at revival using their Blue Light Specials as a way to lure shoppers. Modular building slightly smaller with everyday essentials. Rest of merch sold online. Beef up online presence. Kmart.com/Sears.com are terrible shopping platforms. Just generally bring back Blue Light special! (mobile app notifications, Daily check-in rewards, etc) Make Blue Light Special the equivalent to Krispy Kreme HOT light sign and watch the masses flock to Kmart for bargains.
 
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Smiley/OCD

Well-Known Member
It kinda makes me think about how we all keep repeating the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
Actually, it CAN work IF executives get off their A***S on a regular basis and work in the stores to see the day to day challenges and ACTUALLY talk to the customers, you know, the ones that are PAYING their salaries...they all have their MBA's, read "The Five Minute Manager" cover to cover and NEVER worked in retail. because it was beneath them. That's one of the things that makes Disney so great, because many, NOT ALL, of the higher ups actually worked in the parks...but the key is NOT to forget what you dealt with once you get the corner office, title and expense account. Again, it's one on one interaction...that's why we were born with eyes, ears and mouths in addition to our brains.
 

Smiley/OCD

Well-Known Member
If Krispy Kremes HOT light sign is any indication of success I think Kmart stands a chance at revival using their Blue Light Specials as a way to lure shoppers. I think a Dollar General model would work! Modular building slightly smaller with everyday essentials. Rest of merch sold online. Beef up online presence. Kmart.com/Sears.com are terrible shopping platforms and just generally bring back Blue Lght special! (mobile app notifications, Daily check-in rewards, etc) Make Blue Light Special the equivalent to Krispy Kreme HOT light sign and watch the masses flock to Kmart for bargains.
As I said earlier, Sears has to cast off, sell, close the K Mart stores, move out of the indoor malls, become the anchor of strip malls with a much smaller footprint, and focus on the profitable portions of their business, tools, auto service, home and garden and appliances. Drop the clothes, jewelry and the secondary lines that they now carry...I don't know about you, but the last time I had clothes from Sears, I was about 10 and my mom bought me a couple of pairs of Toughskin jeans... As far as the Krispy Kreme hot light goes, we don't have any in NJ anymore (again, retail mismanagement by the franchise owners)...I LOVE KK's...you're making me hungry!!
 

iHeartDisneylandCats

Proud Member Since 2016
Original Poster
Back in the 80's (when I was in HS), they used to call us mall rats, because we'd hang out on a Friday or Saturday night after the movie in the mall...now, unfortunately, the term mall rat now has 4 legs and a tail, living in one of the empty stores...
I certainly know what you're talking about. One of the malls in my area used to be really good up until maybe five or six years ago. It was always busy and had all kinds of different retailers, a Disney store, a Sears, a nice food court, and lots of well known chains. Sadly it has struggled this decade and it's now two floors of mostly nothing and hardly any people visiting. Half the stores are empty and the ones that remain are irrelevant, such as a vape shop and "everything $5 or less" low quality garbage. Even the GNC which seems to be in every struggling mall recently closed. The Dillard's is now becoming a clearance only location, and the only other anchors left are JCPenney and Macy's. There are a few non-anchor chains left such as Victoria's Secret and Bath And Body Works, but I'm guessing they won't be around in a year or two.

Another large dead mall about an hour away from me is getting torn down and redeveloped, and the first mall I mentioned will probably meet the same fate in the 2020s. It will be really sad too, because I went there all the time as a kid, and some of my earliest memories are there. 😕
 
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