It’s a pressure-packed holiday season for retail

It’s a pressure-packed holiday season for retail 800 450 C-Suite Network

The list of retailers plagued by store closures, bankruptcies, buyouts or very serious financial trouble is a who’s-who list of iconic brands that have fallen off their retail pedestals. This year has already proven to be a retail cull, and this holiday season will add more names to that list. It’s make-or-break for many, and the pressure, stress and urgency are palpable.

Retailers can anticipate more of the same when it comes to holiday discounting, as well as wild risks from some brands without much to lose. Here’s a closer look at what to expect:

It’s Amazon’s market share now

Not too long ago, retail was obsessively focused on how Amazon was eating into everyone else’s market share. Well, Amazon owns it now — the game is reversed. Every major retailer is going to be focused on how it can steal market share from Amazon this year.

And Amazon isn’t going to back down from that challenge.

Nike’s product rollout on Amazon portends even more major shakeups. Retail apparel is notably one of the few areas Amazon has struggled to gain traction, but that tide might be turning. If Nike’s relationship with Amazon expands, it could open the floodgates for other retailers that want to explore third-party operations with Amazon.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos always finds a way to surprise the industry. Many were surprised at the acquisition of Whole Foods Market, but it shouldn’t shock anyone if a holiday expansion of Amazon’s apparel line is in the works.

Walmart’s response

Walmart is one of the few brands that has held its own against Amazon. Walmart’s holiday response should directly compete with some of Amazon’s bigger initiatives, such as shipping — rivaling it in both speed and price.

Shopping options will also be highly marketed — reserve in store, buy online, pick up in store and ship from store will be consumer expectations for the major retailers.

Will it be enough to draw customers away from Amazon?

The promotional calendar is going haywire

If you’re a marketer, don’t expect to get much sleep. Promotional changes are coming…