WHEN IT COMES TO CHRISTMAS, MACY’S HAS LONG KNOWN HOW TO DO IT. The store launches its big seasonal push with a spectacular Macy’s Day Parade — a New York City annual highlight, complete with gigantic floats and sky-hugging balloons, as well as celebrities, clowns, Broadway musical stars, bands from around the nation, and all sorts of additional entertainment — an hours-long phenomenon that wends its way through the streets of New York every Thanksgiving Day, when a big-bellied, laughing, and always lovable Santa Claus officially comes to town.
NOW, MACY’S IS PUTTING A WHOLE NEW TWIST ON RETAILING for the season, as well. In the past, Macy’s has rolled out a large collection of Christmas gifts starting in November. The gifts have included jewelry, cosmetics, and various types of cold weather accessories, and were all boxed and attractively wrapped, all ready for giving. This “buy and go” idea has long been a favorite of store buyers, boosting sales significantly every year.
An Even Better Idea
SO, WHY CHANGE? Because the store obviously thinks it has an even better idea for gifts this year. And since, as we already said, Macy’s has long known how to do it for Christmas, we won’t question their expertise. Instead, we’ll tell something about this year’s new plan with the expectation that you’ll be able to copy some of the ideas for yourself – admittedly on a much smaller scale! –But, hey, don’t forget: The pre-packaged gifts idea the store used in the past is still a great idea to grab on to and run with!
YOU CAN MAKE USE OF SPECIALTY ITEMS, CAREFULLY PURCHASED AND ALREADY PACKAGED IN YOUR STORE, TOO. HERE ARE SOME TO WORK WITH:
- Plaid scarf. Cozy 100% acrylic with the feel of wool.
- Best Brand Christmas wreath slide. Use as a pendant or a pin.
THIS YEAR, HOWEVER, MACY’S IS setting up new Gift Shops, which range from a few hundred square feet in size to over 1,000 square feet, all at the store’s landmark Herald Square location in Manhattan. The shops will be filled with all kinds of quirky, colorful gifts for the holidays, more than 400 items for kids, men and women.
The Gift Shop items are well priced and even off-beat in nature, yet all of them ranking high on any gift-giving scale. For example, a baby onesie (an infant’s one-piece jumpsuit) decorated with skull and crossbones sells two for $20. Fat digital watches in fun Day-Glo color come in at $36. And a set of three false eyelashes is just $18.
Enamel jewelry is a big item for the Gift Shops. So are makeup cases from Kitson. In case you aren’t familiar with that name, Kitson is a popular Los Angeles store that sells a bevy of designer brand items. Like Macy’s, Kitson apparently knows how to do it with gift items, too!
The Color Quotient
MARTINE REARDON, MARKETING vice president at Macy’s, says that about 90 percent of the items in the Gift Shops were developed and made by Macy’s. Most especially, Reardon noted, “the colors are exclusive to us.”
Macy’s, Reardon added, has tried to break out of its holiday gift mold. Apparently, it has done it now in a big way with exclusive products, specialty items, hand-picked gifts, and unique color waves, all presented in Christmas Gift Shops that are at once inside Macy’s, and yet aside from the store’s daily fare. Any one of these factors is a merchandising idea worth looking into!
But…back to the store’s overall Christmas Gift Plan: Macy’s is also unveiling what it calls “celebrity gifting nooks,” smaller gift corners, you might say,¸ with more exclusive items, created for Macy’s by specialty brands such as Betsy Johnson, Calvin Klein, Donald Trump, and a long list of other outstanding designers.
These additional International Gift Shops, slated to open in 25 stores around the country, will carry things like handwoven baskets from Rwanda, Maasai jewelry from East Africa, and wooden trays from Indonesia. Specialty items with a gift-giving twist!
–Great gifts! Great ideas! You might try putting some of them to work for you this year. They could put extra dollars into your cash register this Christmas!
WHATEVER YOU PLAN TO SELL FOR CHRISTMAS, DON’T MISS OUT ON THESE GREAT ITEMS, VALUE-PACKED FOR GIVING: