I was saddened to see two more retailers enter administration, yet more casualties to spiralling costs and changing consumer behaviour. I have to admit to not being surprised at the demise of Toys Are Us, if there has ever been a less inspiring, more soulless toy shop I’ve yet to visit it. To be honest, I buy most of my little boys toys online as it’s cheaper and less hassle but if I were to take him to a toy shop then I would want somewhere we he gets the chance to play with some of the toys or where they have staff that will engage with him and make the visit more of an experience or a treat.

The comparisons with my sector are very relevant, food has almost been commoditised such is the overwhelming number of “me too” brands in the market place. You really do need to be offering something very different in terms of product or experience to ensure ongoing success and you can see why brands such as Wagamama and Pret are doing so well. Greggs are also doing incredibly well, their no nonsense, cheap and cheerful offering has real appeal. They sell a decent product at a very affordable price in clean, fresh looking locations with decent levels of customer service – what’s not to like?

Finally for this mornings musings, the weather has been a real killer sales wise for a lot of people and I have my fingers crossed that things get back to normal very quickly.

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