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Nordstrom Comprehensive Overview

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Nordstrom, Inc. Comprehensive Overview
Davenport University
BUSN520 Management and Marketing
Professor Philip Shaps
Shyla Allers
August 12, 2015

Table of Contents

Introduction 3
Organization, subsidiaries and business units, history 4-5
Scope of the business and current products or services provided 5-6
Scope of market distribution-are they local, regional, global 7
Leadership and management structure and individuals 7
Current issues that may affect the future of the organization 7-8
Description of Strengths 8-9
Description of Weaknesses 9-10
Description of Opportunities 10
Description of Threats 10-11
Description of External Factors Impacting Decisions 11
Description of Possible future scenarios 12
Recommendations for changes in culture, leadership and/or structure 12
Description of project company’s primary market 12-13
Description of project company’s secondary market 13-14
Description of one target group and demographic profile 14-15
Description of project company’s market position 15-16
Recommendations for leadership and organizational structure 16-17
Recommendations for placement 18-19
Conclusion 19-21
References 22-23
Appendix A 24

Introduction/Overview
Nordstrom, Inc. is an upscale fashion retail company that approaches a broad variety of fashion clothing, shoes, accessories and cosmetics. It started out in 1901 as a shoe store in Seattle and has grown into a leading retailer today. John W. Nordstrom was a Swedish immigrant that went to Alaska for the Gold rush and took his earnings, moved to Seattle and opened a shoe store. In the years to come, the Nordstrom family business thrived on principles of quality, value, selection and service. The family enterprise has grown from the single shoe store in Seattle into a leading fashion retailer, offering a wide variety of fine quality apparel, shoes and accessories for men, women and children as well as accessories and cosmetics. The company offers a large selection of brand name as well as private label merchandise. They are committed to providing their customers the best possible service, and improving it every day. (Nordstrom, Inc.)
They have 242 full line stores across 38 states in the United States and 2 in Canada, 178 Nordstrom Rack locations, 5 Trunk Club clubhouses (a personalized styling service), 2 Jeffery Boutiques, and 1 clearance store operated under the name Last Chance. They serve customers online in 96 countries through Nordstrom.com, and also operate an e-commerce site Nordstromrack.com as well as partners with their private sale site Hautelook.com. The last two websites sells to customers in the US, Canada and Australia. Nordstrom also has restaurants and coffee bars and spas inside some of its Nordstrom stores.
Nordstrom utilizes its operations and products to move forward to reach the company’s future goals for growth. With an ever changing competitive environment, consumer priorities and preference as well as legal issues, the company may have a difficult time reaching its financial goals in the future.
Description of Organization, all subsidiaries and business units, history
Nordstrom is a fashion specialty retailer that started out in 1901 as a shoe store in Seattle and has grown into a leading retailer today. John W. Nordstrom was a Swedish immigrant that went to Alaska for the Gold rush and took his earnings, moved to Seattle and opened a shoe store. In the years to come, the Nordstrom family business thrived on principles of quality, value, selection and service. The family enterprise has grown from the single shoe store in Seattle into a leading fashion retailer, offering a wide variety of fine quality apparel, shoes and accessories for men, women and children at stores across the country. They are committed to providing their customers the best possible service, and improving it every day.
They have 116 full line stores across 38 states in the United States and 2 in Canada, 178 Nordstrom Rack locations, 5 Trunk Club clubhouses (a personalized styling service), 2 Jeffery Boutiques, and 1 clearance store. They serve customers online in 96 countries through Nordstrom.com, and also operate an e-commerce site Nordstromrack.com as well as partners with their private sale site Hautelook.com. The last two websites sells to customers in the US, Canada and Australia.
Members of the founding Nordstrom family still continue to own about 20% of Nordstrom stock. Interestingly enough, John W. Nordstrom left more of a business then he had started with and the next generation of Nordstrom’s doubled the company by 1929 and still managed to survive the Great Depression by making $250,000 in sales. During World War II, when leather was rationed and people were only able to purchase 3 pair of shoes per year, the Nordstrom brothers had to find alternative places to purchase their shoes.
In the 1950s the brothers were convinced they could expand and decided to diversify and purchased an apparel store called Best Apparel. The company quickly expanded and after an outlet was purchased in Portland, they merged it with the shoe store in Portland and named it Nordstrom Best. Here is where the Nordstrom department store started to take shape.
In 1968 the third generation of Nordstrom’s took the lead of the company and in 1971 the company went public. Once the company reached $100 million in sales, they changed the name to Nordstrom, Inc. Customer service was legendary, where sales clerks would pay customers’ parking tickets, help customers who did not have enough cash as well as rush deliveries to other businesses and accept returns without any questions. At the other end of the spectrum, Nordstrom offered free coat check, concierge services and piano players to serenade their customers.
Description of scope of the business and current products or services provided
As of March 16, 2015, the Retail segment includes the Company's 115 Nordstrom branded full-line stores in the United States and Nordstrom.com, 167 off-price Nordstrom Rack stores, two Canada full-line stores, Nordstromrack.com and HauteLook, and other retail channels, including five Trunk Club showrooms and TrunkClub.com, its two Jeffrey boutiques and one clearance store that operates under the name Last Chance. Focusing on apparel, shoes, cosmetics and accessories, Nordstrom offers a wide selection of brand-name and private label merchandise. In-store purchases are primarily fulfilled from that store's inventory, but when inventory is unavailable at that store it may also be shipped to its customers from its fulfillment center in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, or from other Nordstrom full-line stores. Online purchases are primarily shipped to its customers from its Cedar Rapids fulfillment center, but may also be shipped from its Nordstrom full-line stores. Nordstrom customers may also pick up online orders in one of its full-line stores if the specific item is available at one of its locations. Nordstromrack.com and HauteLook offer limited-time sale events on fashion and lifestyle brands, as well as an unrelenting selection of off-price, brand-name merchandise and offer a single customer log-in, shopping cart able to utilize various locations and an efficient and easy checkout process.
Nordstrom Inc. also has a credit division. Their credit segment includes the Company's owned federal savings bank, Nordstrom fsb that offers a private label credit card, two Nordstrom VISA credit cards and a debit card. (Nordstrom, Inc.) Its credit and debit card products also offers a loyalty program that gives benefits to its cardholders based on how much they are spending. The Nordstrom private label credit and debit cards may only be used at its Nordstrom full-line stores in the United States, Nordstrom Rack stores and online at Nordstrom.com, Nordstromrack.com and HauteLook, while the Nordstrom Visa credit cards can be used for purchases at other locations besides Nordstrom. Cardholders join in the Nordstrom Rewards program, where cardholders rack up points for their shopping purchases. When they reach a certain level, cardholders are given Nordstrom Notes, which can then be redeemed for goods or services at Nordstrom full-line stores in the United States and Canada, Nordstrom Rack stores and at Nordstrom.com. Nordstrom Rewards customers receive cash back or credit for alterations, get Personal Triple Points days where on certain days receive more than the standard points and have early access to sales events like the half-yearly sale. (Nordstrom, Inc.)

Description of scope of market distribution-are they local, regional, global, etc?
Nordstrom is a company with a global reach having physical locations in the United States and Canada as well as online in 96 other countries. The company will be opening 5 new full line stores this year and relocating one. There is a plan to open the first ever Manhattan store by 2018 and is planning to reach 330 Rack locations by 2020. There is currently 1 full line store in Canada and they will add 5 more stores, 3 in 2015 and the last 2 in 2016/2017 respectively.
Description of leadership and management structure and individuals
There is an executive team as well as a board of directors. The Nordstrom Way by Robert Spector and Patrick D. McCarthy, describe the leadership as the “Gold standard that all companies should learn from.” (The Nordstrom Way, 2012) Nordstrom gives employees the freedom to excel above and beyond for each and every customer, just like they would like to be treated. By empowering the staff, they feel like an owner of a small business where they make their own decisions based on what is best for the customer. The structure of the company is designed to offer the adaptability that employees need to obtain that goal. All managers and directors are hired from within, meaning that every manager has at one point been on the sales floor to experience providing excellent customer service.
Description of current issues that may affect the future of the organization
To keep customers coming, retailers need to do a better job of creating experiences that customers value, evolving with the customer, so that those experiences always match — and exceed — expectations. "Customers will buy more when they're happy," says Nordstrom.
And while this has always been the case, the challenge is that "what has made them happy has changed," says Nordstrom. (Jordan Speer, 2012)
The retail industry as a whole faces several key issues in the future. First is what they call the Omni Channel or Omni Commerce experience. It encompasses several key points including data management, inventory availability and visibility, innovation and technology. One of the most important, especially in my mind is payment options and security for those types of payments. With the large scale security breaches that have been in the spotlight, it puts the way customers pay a top priority. The last big point of possible issues facing any retail organization is hiring and retaining good quality employees. In the big picture, Nordstrom has excelled in this department by giving the employees the freedom to make decisions. Customers today are highly informed as they have all the tools at their fingertips to find specific items they are looking for, and most importantly at the best possible prices. A customer wants things delivered immediately, the best products available, 100% availability, the best customer service and no issues if it needs to be returned. Even the person who has money to spend wants the best product at the best price. Since the majority of sales in this day and age are from ecommerce, a company has to do due diligence to ensure that they attract customers into the store. Mobile use is also important to future thriving due to the fact that most people today are using smart phones and without the capability, the customers will go elsewhere.
Description of strengths
Nordstrom does a lot of things very well. First thing that is a major strength for the company is their ability to tap into very diverse market potentials. They offer retail and credit division. In the retail portion, Nordstrom offers a wide selection of private label and name brand merchandise through multiple retail connections. It also offers bath and beauty products and home accents. At the Nordstrom spa, they sell products like skincare, makeup, self tanning products, sun protection, hair care, nail care as well as bath and body products. In the credit segment, they offer 2 Nordstrom VISA credit cards and a debit card for in store purchases. There is also a private label card. (Nordstrom, Inc.2013)
Another great strength of Nordstrom is that they have diversity like none other. Back in the 80’s and early 90’s, they used a big problem within the industry to their advantage. A large majority of their workforce is women and minorities. (The Nordstrom way, 2010) They also use a “supplier diversity program” that offers business opportunities to supplying companies that are owned by women and minorities. In addition to their various lines, Nordstrom operates specialty shops offering holiday décor, bed and bath, home décor and entertaining, a wedding suite and designer collections. The company also operates 6 merchandise distribution centers, 1 fulfillment center and through HauteLook it operates 2 more distributions centers. Lastly, Nordstrom participates in many non-profit organizations as well as supports education and many universities. By incorporating these beliefs into their company, they have support within their communities to help keep them profitable. (The Nordstrom Way, 2010)
Description of weaknesses
One of Nordstrom’s weaknesses is the fact that the company does not have a presence in many other countries. They do offer shipping from a few of their online retailers but that only includes Canada and Australia. They do have 2 full line stores in Canada and plan to offer 3 more openings within the next 3 years. However, they do not offer their name brand store outside of North America.
Another issue that leads to the overall weakness of Nordstrom is the there are many other companies in the same market. This is an indication that the market is saturated. There are other companies that are working equally as hard to have name brands at a cheaper price. The more companies that jump into this retail market make it incredibly difficult for Nordstrom or any other company to continue to profit. (Analyst Report)
The company also reported their total receivable at 2.31Billion for 2015 from 2.13Billion in 2013 which accounts for approximately 44.25% of their total current assets where the cash represented for only 15.84% of the total current assets. Basically this means that if there were any type of negligence of its receivable it would affect Nordstrom’s ability to meet there short term obligations. (Market Watch, 2015)
Description of opportunities
Previously I mentioned that a weakness of this company is the fact that it does not have a presence on other continents. This would definitely be an opportunity for Nordstrom to put their stores in the European market and other emerging economies. Another area that proved beneficial is the changing of their computer system back in late 90’s. This helped to keep inventory up to date and provide a customer with exactly what they want at any given time.
Probably one of the wisest moves that Nordstrom can make is to acquire smaller retail chains. Again this would allow them to reach a wider population and larger demographics. It would increase their total assets and hopefully give them more cash inflow. I also believe that a large marketing campaign could help to reach more customers. The full line store is usually in a large populated area which means small towns may not know or have ever heard of the store.
Description of threats
While technology is a wonderful tool, it also creates a disconnect with customers. People still like to have an emotional contact in most things they do which includes shopping. In my mind, shopping has an emotional tie so by ramping up the online sales and not having the one on one contact with each customer; it is very hard to retain consumers.
Economic changes can be a threat. When the country is in a recession, people are spending less in the fashion industry, as it is not a necessity to some. With the population spending less, they are also shopping more at discount stores. Even the people with money to spend are looking for a great bargain. Age, gender and population play a role in the threat to the future of Nordstrom.
Another threat is the legal fees and tariff changes that are implemented from using an overseas factory. There have been many accusations from many of the factories that they use in third world countries. These sweat shops have accused Nordstrom of labor abuses. They have settled these lawsuits but the threat and continual backlash can be very damaging. Not only for their brand but also the legal fees charged to deal with each and every claim. (Customer Analysis, 2013)
Description of external factors impacting decisions
The external factors are related to the opportunities and threat that Nordstrom faces. The economy would be a large factor regarding future decisions. The company would need to make sure to adjust to what the needs of the customer. Also it would be important to edge out their competitor by offering a better product, better price with better customer service. If Nordstrom does purchase smaller retail chains, this would enable them to reach a population that may not be able to afford the upscale fashion. By continuing to offer a better product along with the top notch customer service, Nordstrom will continue to beat the competition in a downed economy.

Description of possible future scenarios
Possible scenarios for the company include partnering with a major bank to take over the debt portion of their credit card. Other possibilities include obtaining or taking over a smaller retail chain as well as opening more store fronts in various locations in the U.S. and Canada. Lastly if the economy starts to slide down hill again, they would have to consider that people will not be looking to buy name brand products but rather cheaper and off market labels. (Annual Report, 2014)
Recommendations for changes in culture, leadership and/or structure
Nordstrom has created a culture that has been able to maintain growth even during economic pitfalls. They have made changes accordingly and still surpassed the customer service experience giving consumers an emotional connection to their purchase.
The leadership team of Nordstrom has returned to family in 2000 for their turnaround. During this time, the family opted to slow the opening of new stores while focusing on inventory and cutting costs. This has worked and they continue to beat the competition and increase their balance sheet.
Description of project company’s primary market
Nordstrom’s primary market tends to be the upper-middle and upper class demographic. Their stores offer a wide variety of high quality merchandise and departments are divided towards target consumers with different price points and brands that meet Nordstrom’s goal of reaching the needs of every one of its customers. Just in womens’clothing alone they offer twenty well defined departments (excluding accessories, makeup, and shoes) with specific customers in mind. For example they offer the Narrative (a department of “polished, put-together looks to keep your wardrobe current” which is targeted for older women) and Brass Plum (called B.P.-“the teen girl’s destination for trend-conscious clothes and accessories). (Nordstrom, 2014) This demonstrates how highly specialized each department is.
There full line stores are usually located in major metropolitan areas that are bursting with economic growth in the fashion retail industry. Their primary zone is made up of its consumer base that live in close proximity to their city-centered locations that have high consumer traffic and are easily accessible. They have recently opened full line stores in Canada and are set to open up several more over the next few years. (Nordstrom,Inc.)
Nordstrom has continued to maintain its image as a luxury retailer. With this image it has kept its primary target consumers in the upper class which has managed to keep them fairly untouched by the recession. However, Nordstrom has not financially suffered as significantly as much as their competitors. This then reiterates the fact that Nordstrom’s primary market continues to be the upper-middle and upper class demographic. Description of project company’s secondary market
Nordstrom’s secondary or tertiary market is the Nordstrom Rack consumer base and its online shopper base. Since the downturn of the economy in the last 10 years, consumers are more aware and price conscious. Customers want to be fashionable but for a fraction of the cost. They want quality apparel with a less pricey alternative. Nordstrom has adapted to this change by opening more of its lower priced Nordstrom Rack stores and less of its full line stores. This discount store still offers Nordstrom’s brands but usually discounted at 30-70% off.
This is and continues to be an emerging secondary target market for Nordstrom. It is in such a competitive industry that they not only have to stay on top of fashion trends but also the way in which consumers can purchase their products. Nordstrom continues to meet this demand by offering a top-notch website and has also acquired Hautelook which is a flash site. This type of shopping is another market altogether that reaches an entirely different type of consumer. These types of consumers have grown as much as 50% in the last few years. It is made up of young people who have a lack of time to shop for the best sale prices. Nordstrom has made sure that if this fad continues to grow, it is well prepared. (Nordstrom Target Market,2012)
Description of one target demographic and demographic profile of project company
According to our text book, part of the STP analysis (Segmentation, Targeting and Positioning) includes a company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT). (Grewal, 2013) Part of this process for a company is doing segmentation which includes one or several ways to segment the market. Once divided, Nordstrom can then look at various demographics to obtain their target market. Some of the types of market segments include geographic, demographic, psychographic, geodemographic and benefits. One target group that I identified with Nordstrom is the career mom. This target group is comprised of females, age 35-50 with an annual income of at least $100,000. These women are more specifically married with teenage children. Some key points of the specific lifestyle that this group has are that they are lacking of personal time, they love to socialize, crave personal attention as well as are beginning to focus again on fashion for themselves. The lack of time noted for this group enables a company like Nordstrom to benefit from their personal shoppers that also offers their services online.
Usually this group of women is only in the full line stores shopping approximately one to four times per year. As hard as that is to understand, with busy lifestyles including full time work, children and the many activities kids are involved in, finding the time to go alone to a store to shop for yourself is almost impossible. In that one to four times a year visit, women are able to see enough or try things on in order to do the rest of their shopping online. With Nordstrom having such a generous return policy, women find it very easy to shop online and return if they are not satisfied for whatever reason. They are very loyal customers that trust the brands offered by Nordstrom. In my mind, they are confident, strong women who know what they want. They want to exuberate a look of class and style that says I look good at my age. One interesting point is that this target group has a fashion sense that seems to be trendy, but is beginning to take risks again. With children getting older, it gives the career mom a chance to pay more attention to herself and occasionally step out of her comfort zone in terms of style. With this target group in mind, Nordstrom offers the classic and conservative style of the career woman, yet offers many other choices that may be a little more risqué or less conservative. It allows this type of style to step into another world of fashion basically without having to leave their comfort zone.
Description of project company’s market position
Nordstrom is an upscale department store that competes with other high-end stores like Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Bloomingdales, a subsidiary of Macy’s. They also compete with various department stores that offer some high end merchandise with some discounted prices like Dillard’s, JC Penny and Kohl’s. I find it interesting that when I shop at any department store, some people ask why I am spending so much more money on certain products. The majority of the time, I am able to find things on a sale rack that are of better quality and cheaper in price than I would have if I purchased something at a discount store. The price may be cheaper, but the quality of the product is not. I could pay $10 for an item, wash it once and it falls apart. That is when you wish you would have spent the $20 to get a product that lasts longer than one wash. You get what you pay for usually ends up being 100% accurate. Nordstrom Rack targets middle-class consumers and competes with companies like Ross and TJ Maxx. They belong in the outlets categories by offering name brand merchandise at discount prices. (Market Realist, 2015)
Nordstrom’s market position is top notch in both categories of retail sales and catalog and internet sales. Nordstrom is number one in total revenue, as well as top position in their market segment.(CSI Market, 2014) They continue to evolve and grow based on there[ idea that fashion is a business of optimism. Not only do they utilize that outlook towards consumers, but also with their employees. This not only helps them obtain customers but to keep those customers coming back again and again. Nordstrom continues to offer customers more ways to shop with a fresh and inspiring style. According to their website, “Fashion changes. Shopping changes. Our commitment to happy customers doesn’t.” (Nordstrom,2014)
Recommendations for leadership and organizational structure
Nordstrom has recently implemented a new hiring process. There are several steps involved, but ultimately it is an audition. First they do a resume review, then a prescreen interview and lastly an audition. Their theory behind it is that just like the return policy in the store, we want you to be happy! Nordstrom actually has hypothetical work projects during the audition. This is a way to sort of test drive the job to see if it is something that you will like. It also enables you to have an answer that same day versus waiting for several days or more to hear back from a company if you in fact got the job. Usually you go on an interview and everyone makes that 30 minute interview seem as if they are super happy with their job, and after accepting a position and working there for a few weeks you realize it isn’t so great. Now you have made a huge mistake and are ready to start looking yet again for another job.
I see the biggest problem with this being the time constraint. If I was told that my interview could possibly run 2-5 hours, I am not sure I would be as interested. I also think that people do not want to hypothetically produce a project in an afternoon, especially if they feel their ideas are not safe, even though they are told it is hypothetical. Another issue I think has some bearing on this is the actual word audition. When I think of an audition, I’m reminded of a struggling actress reading lines to a panel of directors in hopes of landing that one big movie! An audition to me sounds scary and incredibly intimidating. Even though I realize that we are actually auditioning when we interview, the term audition takes it to a whole new level.
What I think Nordstrom should do is something similar to their current concept but possibly more streamlined. Take all applicants that meet you are qualifications, bring them to a group interview. Similar to Southwest Airlines, break the group into smaller groups and give them a “scenario” where they have to discuss amongst themselves and make some decisions. It seems to be a much laid back environment, but in fact the people running the scenarios are actually looking for the person in the group that stands out as a leader. They are looking for the one that works well with the entire group of unknown people and how they interact with others. This doesn’t have to take longer than an hour to hour and half. Then once the staff have decided on the few they are interested in to interview, call them in for a more traditional style interview. I believe this type of process would allow a company like Nordstrom an opportunity to hire the most talented personnel. In a company where superior customer service is rooted in their culture, this would allow Nordstrom to secure its continued and future success. Recommendations for placement
According to our text, the 4 p’s include product, price, place and promote.(Grewal, 2013) Nordstrom’s products are women, men and children’s apparel as well as accessories, shoes and makeup. The price for Nordstrom full line stores is pricier and Nordstrom rack is a little more discounted. Promoting the product is something Nordstrom does very well, including magazines, face book, and even pintrest! Placing the products for accessibility has been limited to mostly densely populated cities. They do offer in some smaller populations Nordstrom rack but this is where I feel they are lacking. As discussed earlier in their company profile, Nordstrom places their full line stores in large city centers that are bustling fashion trends. Usually these locations are in large metropolitan areas. Nordstrom has more recently slowed on opening their full line stores and instead opened more of their discount stores, Nordstrom Rack. These have been very successful with the millenial's! However, growing up in the southwest, there were not any Nordstrom full line stores or Nordstrom racks. The closest one was in Dallas, Texas which was almost 10 hours away!
Future innovation and cultural concepts are the future of Nordstrom’s success, but I also believe that there are a lot of opportunities outside of the virtual world. With the global market consumed with internet sales and advertising, it seems the stand alone store continues to fade away. I realize that market research leads them to areas that promise to be more profitable, but I think there is a place for full line stores or even the discount stores in locations where they are not. For instance, in New Mexico, there are no full line stores nor are there any Nordstrom rack locations. Albuquerque is a very busy bustling city with a population 6 times that of Grand Rapids. The closest rack location is in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma which is 7 hours away. The closest full line store is in Dallas, Texas which is 9 hours away.
It has in recent years opened up more stores across the country and especially on the east coast. However I feel that they would be highly benefit from opening more locations in the southwest from Arizona to Oklahoma and Texas. As a shopper, it is easy to purchase online but at the end of the day, I do like to physically go into a store and touch the clothes, try them on and get that excellent service that they offer. More locations would just give them more attention as well as drive the consumers who do shop online into the stores to experience what the Nordstrom brand is all about!
Conclusion
Nordstrom continues to lead the upscale fashion industry. The company has many strengths and weaknesses as well as opportunities and threats. Given the leadership and culture that they have instilled over the years, the annual sales continue to rise against their competitors. Nordstrom continues to work towards offering a quality product and receiving the best customer service experience whether it is in the full line store, discount stores or online with the various lines they offer. They are taking the necessary steps to continue to build a strong future and to continue to be one step ahead of the competition. Nordstrom continues to evolve based on their primary and secondary target markets. They utilize specific demographics to help reach and market to that type of clientele. More specifically they use a psychographic and geodemographic type of segmentation that gives them a very detailed target market. A good example of this is the career mom who is married with children. These children are in their teens now and this specific group of women is starting to focus more on their own personal style. They are taking time out for themselves and buying fashion for themselves for a change. Another great example is targeting to the younger teen age group who want trend-conscious clothes and accessories.
Nordstrom is in a tough retail industry but continues to stay above their competitors. They continue to adapt to change and offer many different experiences for each style that their consumers are looking for. Not only in offering the products the consumers want but also giving them quality products and the ultimate in customer service no matter which avenue they choose to buy the products. Nordstrom is continually looking at trends of the future by purchasing Hautelook which is a flash sale site. This is another way to target a specific market. This group is a younger more money conscious group, but also lacks the time to search for great sales. These type of websites have grown immensely in the last few years. This willingness to change and accommodate consumers will continue to push and keep Nordstrom on top in their industry.
Nordstrom is a company with a long standing history. Dating back to 1901 as a small shoe store in Seattle, the company has grown into a fashion industry leader. With the company’s strong values and commitment to giving customers the most excellent customer experience possible, they have managed to withstand various times in the downward market of the retail industry. They have continually sought ways to improve and move forward in a very digital age. The company has continued to see profits where other companies have experienced a loss.
The company empowers their sales people to act in the best interest of the customer, do what they feel is right and treat the customer the way they would want to be treated. The training is important and there is only one rule: “Use good judgment”. Do what you think is necessary to provide the best customer service experience. There are no other rules to follow. This helps explain the reason for the longevity and continued success of this retail provider. Even though they are changing some of the formats of their hiring process, they are continually looking at ways to find the best employees out there as well as how to retain those most valuable to them. Nordstrom empowers their employees to feel as if they are in control of their own company. They are allowed to make decisions that are in the best interest of the customer without having to call a manager for approval. Employees are listened to and given opportunity to have their ideas utilized in a way that ultimately improves processes and procedures and continues to make Nordstrom successful. They also promote from within, believing that someone who has worked on the sales floor will have a greater drive and understanding of the way that the company likes things done. This is only a few of the excellent qualities that continually put Nordstrom on the list of Forbes “best companies to work” for every year!

References
Grewal, D. Levy, M. (2013). M: Marketing (3rd, 13 ed.) Burr Ridge, IL: McGraw-Hill Higher Education
About Us, (2014), Nordstrom, retrieved from http://shop.nordstrom.com/c/about-us?origin=footer
Investor Relations, (2015), Nordstrom, retrieved from http://investor.nordstrom.com/phoenix.zhtml?p=irol-eventDetails&c=93295&eventID=5200313
Nordstrom’s Target Customers, (February, 2015), Market Realist, retrieved from http://marketrealist.com/2015/02/nordstroms-target-customers/
Nordstrom Retailer, (2013), Storify, retrieved from https://storify.com/adembowski/nordstrom-retailer-profile
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Nordstrom’s Competition and its Market share, (2015), CSI Market, retrieved from http://csimarket.com/stocks/competitionSEG2.php?code=JWN Robert Spector and Patrick D. McCarthy (2012), The Nordstrom Way
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Nordstrom is growing consistently despite difficult external factors affecting other retailers, Analyst report, retrieved from http://analysisreport.morningstar.com/stock/research?t=JWN&region=USA&culture=en-US&productcode=MLE
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Appendix A

This chart represents some of Nordstrom’s’ competitors and the price change in the market . This again represents how the company continues to stay ahead or on top of the competition.

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