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Fast Fashion, Apparel And Specialty Grocery Dominate The List Of Rapidly Growing Retailers

Written by Ken Gaebler
Published: 8/12/2013

Annual STORES Hot 100 Retailers List shows that personalized shopping experiences and lifestyle products are becoming increasingly important to consumers.

The consumer marketplace is a fickle mistress. Trends and products that are red hot this year can quickly disappear off the shelf next year, leaving retailers holding the bag on excess inventory and mismatched marketing plans.

Hot 100 Retailers 2013

But although it can be difficult to accurately predict granular product trends, all retailers -- large and small -- need to stay on top of the larger trends that are shaping the retail sector. This year's STORES Hot 100 Retailers list confirms a handful of trends that have been developing over time and are now influencing the way retailers achieve success in the B2B marketplace.

Th3 2013 list shows increasing demand in the fast-fashion, specialty grocery and apparel categories. More importantly, the list demonstrates rising consumer preference for brands that deliver personalized shopping experiences as well as brand characteristics that align with their personal lifestyles.

"With the worst of the recession behind us, retail has dramatically changed the way it responds to customers' complex needs and wants," said Susan Reda, media editor at STORES. "Today's fastest-growing companies recognize shoppers' desire for a relevant and personalized shopping experience and deliver products that speak to their unique sensibilities when it comes to lifestyle and fashion."

Leveraging savvy merchandizing, brand expansion, exemplary customer service and marketing to niche markets, several retailers have managed to remain in STORES Hot 100 Retailer list for the past eight years including:

  • Amazon.com
  • Ascena Retail Group
  • O'Reilly Automotive
  • Urban Outfitters
  • J.Crew
  • Tractor Supply Co.
  • Dick's Sporting Goods
  • Dollar Tree
  • Ross Stores
  • PetSmart

STORES list of the fastest growing restaurants and food chains includes:

  • Jimmy John's
  • Cheddar's Casual Café
  • Buffalo Wild Wings
  • Chipotle Mexican Grill
  • Panda Restaurant Group (Panda Express)
  • Noodles & Company
  • Zaxby's Franchising
  • Wingstop Restaurants
  • BJ's Restaurants?
  • Chick-fil-A

For small retailers and restaurant owners, one of the key takeaways from this year's list is that the most successful businesses tend to be those that have clearly defined their brand and attracted a consumer following by establishing their niche in the larger retail or restaurant marketplace.

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