Why J.C. Penney May Become Your Favorite Place to Shop
Investors demonstrated just how pleased they were with J.C. Penney’s new vision when the store’s shares skyrocketed 18.8 percent on the New York Stock Exchange to $40.72 on Thursday. According to WWD, the increase in stock price was “the highest for Penney’s in at least 30 years.”
Want to know why investors are so excited — and why you should be equally thrilled? Check out the dramatic changes in store for Penney’s below.
New Promo Plans
Instead of the 590 annual promotions J.C. Penney currently does, they’ll narrow their focus down to 12, or one per month. For example, February will focus on Valentine’s Day, August will highlight back-to-school goods and beachwear will be May’s focus.
“Every month, every store will go through a radical transformation,” said Michael Francis, Penney’s president. He explained that people tend to organize their lives by month and that Penney’s wants to get in sync with their shoppers’ lives.
No More Antiquated Merchandise Jargon
Terms like “missy,” and “pant” are no more with Penney’s new vision. Instead, they’ll focus on shoppers’ lifestyles and how they shop today.
New Accessories/Cosmetics “Town Square”
Instead of the random accessories and cosmetics islands currently scattered throughout the center of Penney’s, shoppers will enjoy a new “town square” shopping design. The new look will be revealed in 2013.
100 Concept Stores
Instead of the open racks shoved against the exterior walls of J.C. Penney stores, they’ll implement “100 individual shop concepts for private and national brands, including Izod, Arizona and Liz Claiborne.” To visualize it yourself, consider IKEA’s individual compartments that customers walk to along the shopping floors. J.C. Penney’s new look will be akin to that.
For example, the Martha Stewart “stores” within the J.C. Penney Walls will have their own look and feel. Johnson said they’ll have an Apple-meets-Martha Stewart vibe. The Arizona store will have a completely different look. It’ll basically be like a door-free mall.
The 100 new concept shops will be phased in at a rate of two or three per month over the course of four years. At the moment, 30 shops are under development. The 100-shop concept also means that Penney’s will phase out roughly 300 of its current brands.
By Wendy Rose Gould
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