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Dan Berthiaume

Senior Editor, Technology

Blog posts by this author

January 2020

NRF Expo floor
The most striking thing about the NRF 2020 Vision conference was the lack of striking things.
crystal ball
A new year full of technology-fueled change and transformation beckons for retailers.

December 2019

walmart nuro
Here are three trends from 2019 poised to continue disrupting retail in 2020 and beyond.
Dunkin’ Donuts' online pop-up shop
The recent spurt of fast-food e-commerce stores demonstrates the evolving nature of digital retail.
For retail IT departments, the task of preparing for the holidays should only end after New Year’s Day.
online alcohol delivery
Alcohol has been popular for thousands of years, but a new trend is emerging in how consumers shop for it.
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Articles by this author

January 2020

A travel center retailer is increasing mobile loyalty participation and penetration with cloud-based data management. In an interview with Chain Store Age, Tyler Tanaka, senior director of digital, loyalty and brand marketing at Pilot Flying J, d

Person holding planet

Who your customers are may factor into sustainability decisions. According to “The State of Consumer Spending: Gen Z Shoppers Demand Sustainable Retail,” a new survey from digital testing platform First Insight, 62% of Gen Z respondents prefer to

bowls of food

One offering can convince food service customers to come in the door, switch from a competitor, or give a second chance.  According to the 2020 Restaurant Marketing Insights guide from online discount platform RetailMeNot, 85% of surveyed co

A footwear retailer is supporting a more targeted assortment approach.

Woman paying for item

Promotions are important to fashion shoppers, but not the number one influencer on their behavior.

Dimas Gimeno

Retailers need to evaluate the need for industry transformation in areas including the store and training.

Providing a brand purpose takes effort, but pays dividends.

Carvana delivery

Carvana is launching as-soon-as-next-day vehicle delivery in Minneapolis.


A specialty beverage retailer is ensuring a consistent physical and digital customer experience.

old navy self-service returns

Retailers aren’t keeping pace with customer expectations in several key areas.

weis storefront

A regional grocer is providing customers with a choice of checkout options.

Despite the chance to significantly boost margins, fewer than one in three retailers have optimized seamless processes such as BOPIS.

Google is making purchasing apparel and footwear as easy as entering a mobile search request.

Cavender’s storefront

Texas-based Cavender’s is keeping up with growth by enabling consistent oversight of tasks for store and district managers.

Smartphones drove double-digit increases in online holiday revenue and traffic.

fedex delivery

Amazon is reportedly allowing third-party sellers to use FedEx ground delivery services once again.

nrf show visitors

Two sessions at the NRF 2020 conference in New York highlighted how focusing on customer service results in higher sales.

J. Crew has deployed a solution that enables it to better manage major seasonal spikes in online demand.

NRF show floor

Retail’s “Big Show” will live up to its name — and then some.

Digital spending rose 8% year-over-year during the 2019 holiday season, with mobile devices serving as a major catalyst.

Wayfair is looking to better scale its operations by moving to the cloud.

ecommerce graphic

What goes up must come down, including online retail traffic.

online shopper

A video game retailer and a sporting goods chain both prepared their sites for the holidays with personalization technology.

returning box

Retailers’ returns policy can have a big impact on whether a holiday gift is even purchased.

Walmart is opening a new case-ready facility to support its young Angus beef business.

carvana delivery

An omnichannel platform for buying and selling used cars is coming to a metro region in New Mexico.

A leading luxury retailer is leveraging robotics to help ensure customers have access to the products they want, in-store as well as online.

employee helping customer

​​​​​​​Retailers should be selective in what aspects of the in-store customer experience they automate.


An online diamond jewelry retailer is streamlining financial operations while personalizing customer experience at scale.


Direct shopping on the Pinterest social platform just got a little easier.

Several specific technologies can help keep customers coming back to your stores.

employee with mobile device

A specialty office products retailer is mobilizing fulfillment across the enterprise.

Retailers are seeing growing returns from recurring revenue programs such as subscription services, memberships, reordering and boxes.

carvana vending machine

Phoenix-based Carvana is adding a new market in Arizona.

grocery cart

Two regional grocery chains are leveraging the same personalization intelligence engine to create a more relevant shopping experience.

shopper with bags

Deloitte advises retailers to stress factors including convenience and digital enablement in the coming year.

gift card in Santa's hand

The increase in holiday spending on gift cards far outpaced overall seasonal growth.


The nation’s largest grocer is not taking a back seat in the race to streamline in-store fulfillment of online grocery orders.

A British retail giant is combining employee communication channels to enable real-time, collaborative shift management.

Subscriptions to an on-demand delivery platform are now available free to holders of select credit cards.

caseys logo

Casey’s is now offering customers points for purchases.

Trade war, returns, and sustainable shipping are just some of the issues on consumers’ minds as 2020 begins.


Iranian hackers may be preparing widespread attacks across U.S. industries – including retail.

Forever 21

Bankrupt fast-fashion apparel retailer Forever 21 is focusing on e-commerce for its international offering.

Walmart is offering an ultra-streamlined shopping experience at its new Neighborhood Market location in Coral Way, Fla.

A specialty gift retailer is optimizing workforce performance with artificial intelligence (AI).

ExxonMobil plans to introduce voice-based fuel payment.

Carol Leaman

Store associates are key to providing one of the few components that online retailers cannot match: the human touch.

cyber security concept

Three leading retailers will discuss the importance of cooperation in modern cybersecurity efforts at the National Retail Federation’s upcoming annual conference, NRF 2020 Vision: Retail’s Big Show.

amazon 4 star

Amazon is reportedly considering opening physical stores in its second-largest global market.

pizza delivery

A pizza chain keeps digital orders fresh.

Chain Store Age's “Top 10 Women in Retail Technology” report honors 10 women who are blazing a trail of success that everyone — regardless of gender — would do well to observe and follow.

Walmart sees unique advantages it can offer brands with its new Walmart Advertising Partners program.

This year, the annual National Retail Federation’s Big Show is titled “2020 Vision,” and there will be some important developments to see.

mobile phone

A surprisingly high percentage of retail and e-commerce apps may be putting customer data at risk.

fulfillment center

An e-tail giant continues developing fulfillment centers across the country.

Walmart is expanding its in-house advertising offering with a new partner network and enhanced capabilities. 


Nine in 10 retail marketers face some level of data issues this year.

Shoppers will visit brick-and-mortar stores in 2020, but won’t check their devices at the door.

A unique experience to benefit charity raked in more than $4 million on eBay.

Online shoppers paused for Christmas Day, but otherwise stayed busy as elves through New Year’s Eve.

Consumer participation in one particular type of commerce surged during the holiday season.

December 2019

shopper using Aira technology

Target is making the store environment more inclusive in time for the holidays.

man shopping online

Purchases made online are returned at a higher rate, but there is a silver lining for some retailers.

Chain Store Age recently spoke with Alan Brill, a senior managing director in Kroll’s cyber risk practice, about the top 10 tactics scammers use to commit fraud against online shoppers.

Minsok Pak

Minsok Pak has quietly left Target Corp. after two years in a C-level role overseeing strategy and innovation.

Online shopper

Online shoppers were busy as elves the weekend before Christmas.


The parent company of the Luby’s and Fuddruckers casual dining chains is branching into digital delivery.

money covered in holiday cheer

Move over, Black Friday and Cyber Monday - Super Saturday just broke single-day U.S. sales records.


A data security incident may have affected Wawa’s 870-plus convenience stores.


Select Albertsons Cos. pharmacies are minimizing the wait time for medications.

One in four small-to-mid-sized businesses (SMBs) keep larger competitors in mind when making shipping/logistics decisions.

Online purchases have dramatically increased during key periods of the 2019 holiday season.


Amazon is taking action following reports of trash being resold on its third-party seller platform.

Rite Aid storefront

Rite Aid Corp. has reason to be merry heading into the holidays.

Holiday shoppers want to find their way to toys and booze.

app screenshots

A specialty outdoor equipment brand is enabling customers to virtually build personalized ski kits via a new app feature.

Brian Cornell

Brian Cornell of Target beat out CEOs from Chipotle and Advanced Micro Devices for a top honor from CNN Business.

Chinese KFC customers can now fill their bellies and their gas tanks in one trip.

The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) has gained another prominent supporter from the retail sector.

Drone delivering package

The latest drone delivery pilot targets hungry workers on the job.

Property management professionals will start the New Year with automated procurement at Lowe’s.

amazon box

America’s biggest e-commerce retailer will deliver 200 million packages between Dec. 19 and Dec. 31.

Giant Eagle

Giant Eagle is placing single-use plastics in its crosshairs.

New Chipotle interior

Chipotle Mexican Grill is piloting new store features to reduce friction and increase convenience for customers and drivers picking up digital orders.

A new study from mall operator Simon indicates that shopping online is not so environmentally friendly.

Sally Beauty

A leading specialty beauty retailer is putting environmental consciousness on its list of New Year’s resolutions.


The coming year will see many retailers increase their e-commerce budgets, with focus on a few key technologies.

smart home

Three leading providers of smart home technology want to provide a seamless, consistent user experience.

Prime Air

Amazon is reportedly turning to a non-traditional partner to build out its Amazon Prime air fleet.

Amazon is turning up the heat as the holiday shopping season enters its final phase.

Woman smiling at laptop in front of Christmas tree

Consumers are becoming motivated to shop online as the last full week of holiday shopping begins. According to the Verizon Holiday Retail Index, e-commerce traffic for the weekend of Dec. 14-15 increased 26.6% compared to the period of Nov.

Petco storefront

A leading specialty pet products retailer is hyperlocalizing its store experience. Petco is deploying the artificial intelligence (AI)-powered Optumera merchandise optimization suite from global IT services firm Tata Consultancy Services (TCS).

Best Buy is extending holiday hours across channels. The consumer electronics giant will have stores open until 6 p.m. local time Christmas Eve, Dec. 24. Other holiday store hours (local time) include: 6 p.m.  Saturday, Dec.

Whisk app

A new app enables consumers to directly shop ingredients from their favorite recipes. Whisk, a smart food platform which was acquired by Samsung Next earlier in 2019, is launching a mobile app featuring a new, connected recipe box and collaborati

Amazon screen

Is Amazon banning some FedEx ground deliveries a case of the pot calling the kettle black?

Cybercriminals, as well as legitimate shoppers, flocked to digital retailers this Black Friday week. The LexisNexis Digital Identity Network recorded a 48% increase in total global transactions between Wednesday, Nov. 27 through Tuesday, Dec.

The USPS is not letting snow, rain or gloom prevent improvement in on-time delivery of holiday packages.

Target Corp. is extending holiday store hours and delivery deadlines.

Another fast-food chain is opening its very own online merchandise shop.

Amazon and shopping malls may both see their fortunes shift in the coming year.

Amazon is reportedly escalating its ongoing delivery feud with FedEx. 

Cyberattacks are more closely mimicking human behavior and following seasonal patterns.

Results of a new survey indicate increasing consumer demand for a specific type of access to retail loyalty programs.

A new survey from e-commerce platform Shopify reveals three categories of holiday shopper retailers should focus on.

Retailers should not overlook brick-and-mortar this holiday season.


A leading fast-food chain is ensuring customers have wide access to consistent online information.

The human factor has a surprisingly big influence on Gen Z purchase decisions.

A major grocery conglomerate is moving ahead with automated in-store fulfillment of e-commerce orders. 

eBay Motors app

An e-tail giant’s automotive marketplace is enabling customers to buy and sell vehicles via mobile app.

Home Depot employee

The Home Depot is heading into fiscal 2020 expecting year-over-year improvement in its rate of total sales growth.

Lululemon Athletica Inc. saw double-digit increases in sales and earnings during the third quarter of fiscal 2019.

Amazon Prime members have time to procrastinate this holiday season.

gymboree storefront

The Children’s Place will bring back Gymboree across channels in 2020.

Dollar Tree Inc. has promoted three C-level executives and the president of its Family Dollar brand is leaving.

Not every growing retail trend is a positive one.

Leaders in the grocery and drugstore verticals are forming a new group purchasing organization.


Kohl’s stores will remain open 24 hours during the holiday shopping home stretch.

Dick’s Sporting Goods is striving to win the competition against fraudulent logins.

American Eagle

Markdowns affected American Eagle Outfitters Inc. earnings per share (EPS) in the third quarter of fiscal 2019 even as sales hit a record.

Save A Lot is looking to improve its customer experience and employee training with a mobile execution management app. 

dominos delivery person holding mobile phone

Domino’s Pizza is moving forward with GPS delivery tracking technology.

walmart nuro

A discount giant is expanding its testing of autonomous vehicles for online grocery delivery.

change jar with bow on top

Amazon is making surprise donations to hundreds of charitable organizations.

Old Navy + Postmates

Old Navy is teaming up with an on-demand delivery provider to offer same-day delivery during the holiday season.


Google continues to position itself as an e-commerce marketplace, adding a new list of trending holiday products.

Brian Dennis, senior VP, customer engagement of SMG

Your customers are on a journey, and need a good experience every step of the way. Customer experience management technology provider SMG helps retailers listen to their customers and act on shopper feedback in real time.

The recently launched Yahoo Shopping e-commerce platform is wooing customers with cash back rewards.

Digital fashionistas are increasingly using one device when researching and making holiday purchases.

A specialty Western wear retailer simplifies in-store digital product searches.

McDonald’s is now serving up something other than fast food.  The fast-food giant has launched Golden Arches Unlimited, an online shop that celebrates its brand with themed-merchandise specifically designed for McDonald’s fans.

Amazon dc

Amazon has reportedly had to clarify the exact meaning of “one-day” shipping to miffed Prime members.

Walmart Canada

Walmart Canada’s newest distribution center features artificial intelligence and automation.

Holiday shipping

Holiday shipping volume is significantly up and a new study examines retailers’ ability to respond.

ebay app

A new eBay app feature enables repurchases at the touch of a button. 


A fast-fashion retailer is making inventory consistently available across channels.

An e-tail giant is investing in solar farms in Illinois, Virginia, and Spain. Amazon’s newest renewable energy solar projects in the U.S. will be located in Lee County, Illinois and in northern Virginia.

tablet with order online screen

Retailers really need to consider free or reduced-cost shipping. According to a new survey from market research firm Clutch, more than three-quarters (77%) of online shoppers say they are very likely to order an item they’re considering if the sh

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