Is it time to close Kmart?
The chain is losing money, and sales are sliding. Is there any reason for it to stay in business?
Would Sears be better off closing Kmart? At the rate things are going, the answer is yes.
Kmart is stuck in a rut. Sales at its stores open at least a year fell 3.8% over the crucial holiday shopping season, The Wall Street Journal reports. Now it has just 0.6% of the nongrocery retail market. In the first nine months of its current fiscal year, the chain posted a $98 million operating loss and saw sales slide 5.5%.
We won't know for a while whether Kmart made a profit in 2012, but it lost money on an operating basis in 2011.
The Kmart stores that I've been to are remarkably similar. They're dirty. The shelves are cluttered, yet the customers are gone. Employees are nowhere to be found.
The Journal found a similar scene at a Kmart in Manhattan, where it reported abandoned carts full of merchandise, unevenly stacked towels and unfolded pajama sets lying about. "The tile floors looked as though they hadn't been mopped in some time, and clothes were piled in the corners of the dressing rooms," Dana Mattioli wrote.
Kmart stores in New Jersey took that a step further, selling expired infant formula and over-the-counter drugs. The chain will pay more than $300,000 in fines and be subject to inspections as a result.
Kmart used to fill an important role for budget-conscious shoppers. But those customers have many more places now that can meet their needs. Dollar stores sell groceries and household necessities. Wal-Mart (WMT) has a bigger selection than Kmart, often at lower prices.
In fact, the Journal cited data showing Kmart's prices were higher than Wal-Mart's and Target's (TGT) in five out of six items it checked at all stores.
Granted, that's a pretty small sample. But if that holds true and Kmart isn't necessarily cheaper than competitors, then what is Kmart's reason for existing?
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They need to visit the Kmart where I shop. It is NOT dirty. Everything is tidy, folded, in its place, and the store sparkles. I love Kmart because it's not over crowded, there are no screeching children everywhere you go in the store, check out is quick and their plastic bags don't rip. Don't judge the entire chain by a few stores in one geographical region please!
I have a good story for you, To prepare ,a little late I must say, days prior to Hurricane Sandy 2012, I went to FOUR Sears stores in Maryland. I had the bright Idea to see if I could purchase the floor display Generator. Three of the stores had already sold floor displays of their Gens... THe fouth and last store in Bowie Maryland.. I approached 2 sales people at the same time, I asked if I could purchase the floor display GEn, both sales people said that the Store manager had told them that they weren't allowed to sell the display, " because they then wouldn't have a display item. But they were going to be getting a shipment in a couple of days. ( this of course would not help me, the delivery of store sale gens would be post storm, a bit late). The sales rep had told me it was against store policy, per mgr to sell floor displayed items, WTF ! As I walked into the Landover Md store there was already 2 different families discussing the purchase of the last floor display generator. While walking into the store I watched thesecond to last gen get wheeled out the door having been just purchased..
SEARS-- YOur not what you use to be,,,
I'd much rather shop at KMart than Walmart. I hate walmart.
I would love it if KMart would make a huge come-back and kick Walmart back down where it belongs.
I know this will never happen, but I can dream.
Kmart who? Haven't stepped in one in years. Target and Walmart get my business. They both have their place in the family.
Sears who? Oh yah once a year ago for a tux rental and once recently because I had strict instructions from my mother in law for a honey do. And perhaps a few times in past 10 years for my hubby's craftsman items.
I say close Kmart and save Sears. Sears like Pennys have both been around 100+ years. Based on that principal alone I would hate to see either fail.
We have given K-Mart 3 tries in about 2 months. The first we tried and tried to get someone in the jewelry dept, and the service desk told us, everyone was working the floor. At Christmas time-no jewelry. We left the cart with a few things n it.
the next time, i have some "shop your way rewards points" and it was about 11.00. at check out they told me i didn't have any , but that they were having this problem all day long. i left the full cart, after he had rung it up, gave my complaint to the service desk, BECAUSE no one in management could e found.
third time, the sales merchandise I had picked out, didn't come up as sale price. seems they could not find anyone to check the price. duh
that was the last time i entered k-mart a few weeks ago.no wonder they have no sales. dirty, everything is a mess, and there is usually no one to be found to help with anything.
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