I. Nordstrom’s overview
Nordstrom is classified as an Upscale Independent Department Store Chain and is noted as one of the largest department stores of its type. Nordstrom is founded in 1901 by two partners, John W. Nordstrom and Carl F. Wallin. It’s headquarter is in Seattle, Washington area. Nordstrom carries a wide variety of merchandise and specialty goods, which includes apparel, shoes, jewelry, cosmetics, fragrances, handbags, accessories, and in some locations, home furnishings. Nordstrom is dealing with competition on many different levels. It is competing with higher end stores such as Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue. In addition, it is also competing with second tier stores such as Macy’s, Dillard’s, and Bloomingdale’s. Dealing with diverse competition, upscale retailer Nordstrom has been famous for superior customer service for over 100 years and has been recognized on every 100 Best Companies To Work For list published in Fortune magazine since 1998.
Nordstrom operates over 200 retail locations across the country with worldwide revenue $10.9 billion in 2011. It has two reportable segments: Retail and Credit. The Retail segment includes 115 ‘Nordstrom’ full-line stores, 89 off-price ‘Nordstrom Rack’ stores, two ‘Jeffrey’ boutiques, and one clearance store that operate under the name ‘Last Chance.’ Nordstrom full-line stores and online store are substantially integrated to provide customers with a seamless shopping experience across channels. The Nordstrom Rack stores purchase high-quality name brand merchandise directly from vendors and also serve as outlets for clearance merchandise from Nordstrom stores. The Credit segment includes wholly owned federal savings bank, Nordstrom FSB, through which Nordstrom provides a private label credit card, two Nordstrom VISA credit cards and a debit card for Nordstrom purchases. The credit and debit cards feature a shopping-based loyalty program designed to increase customer visits and spending. Although the primary purpose of our Credit business is to foster greater customer loyalty and drive more sales, Nordstrom also generate revenues through finance charges and other fees on these cards.
In retail department stores, consumer’s purchases are made within each department because each department is treated separately to achieve economies in promotion, buying, service, and control. Instead of categorizing departments by merchandise, Nordstrom created fashion departments that fit individual lifestyles. The retailer's best customers benefit from Nordstrom's "Perpetual Inventory" initiative, which provides the "right product, at the right place, at the right time." Nordstrom’s customer service is superior in that they put maintaining a customer relationship their top priority. It‘s main goal is to provide outstanding service every day, one customer at a time, and support the employees who deliver service to those customers. Each Nordstrom employee has a business card, which he or she gives to customers, to encourage them to reach back directly if they need anything. In addition, Nordstrom spends much less on traditional advertising than its competitors do, and to Nordstrom, “satisfied customers are much more persuasive than an ad”.Its legendary customer service is a competitive advantage that can't be easily duplicated, and the company spends a lot of time, money, and effort training employees to maintain that distinction. Even in times of economic distress, Nordstrom still maintains an unwavering commitment to making choices that are in the best interest of the customer. Therefore, Nordstrom keeps growing and maintains a great financial result in comparison with other department stores.
Nordstrom business strategies are:
1. Maintaining good relationship with vendors and consumers 2. Maintaining good relationship with employees and providing effective training to them to develop future leaders 3. Expanding into new...