IDC Retail Insights has launched a new research service under the name of Retail Merchandise Strategies. The initiative aims to advise retailers on the use of information technology to aid in the buying, planning, assortment, allocation, replenishment and pricing of merchandise. Joining up as program director is Greg Girard, who has more than 25 years of experience in the retail technology industry. His research will focus on a number of key themes, including differentiation, localization, customer focus, revenue and inventory optimization technologies, multichannel retailing and business intelligence. At the outset, he will be looking at new mobile and social shopping methods to be employed by customers during the 2010 holiday season; social media analytics; a road map for integrating localized assortments, space planning, allocation and replenishment, and best practices in predictive retail analytics, business intelligence and optimization. The new service was designed to help retailers overcome today's harsh market conditions, while emphasizing customer focus and brand value, according to IDC.
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