RET500 - Understanding the Retail Business

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Last revision date Mar 4, 2019 4:00:32 PM
Last review date Mar 11, 2019 1:18:53 PM

Subject Title
Understanding the Retail Business

Subject Description
This subject is designed to give 4th semester students a broad understanding of current Canadian retail business trends. The operational aspects as well as the nature of various retail formats will be examined and discussed including buying, selling, customer service, advertising, store layout and design, technology and results measurement and evaluation.

Credit Status
One credit.

Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this subject the student will be able to:

1. Differentiate between the various retail formats and how current market trends, social influences and customer attitudes give rise to retail structures such as:
- department stores
- discounters
- factory outlets
- fashion chains
- big box/warehouse operations

Team written/oral projects will be completed to illustrate the differences between two existing retailers in directly competitive formats in areas such as:
- merchandise
- physical facility
- advertising
- customer service
- pricing and profit structure
- organization
- presentation
- sales promotion
- logistics

2. Explain the effect of external influences that cause industry reorganization and change such as:
- governmental
- demographic
- technological
- economic

3. Explain the many influences that trigger buying decisions such as:
- cultural
- social
- lifestyle
- age
- income
- family life

4. Describe the research tools available to the retailer and how this information can assist in developing a retail strategy.

5. Interpret the effect that key physical elements have on store profit and sales such as:
- layout
- design
- presentation

6. Explain the process of merchandise assortment planning, buying, and pricing as it applies to various retail formats.

7. Explain selling techniques and other sales supporting needs the customer responds to in developing a totally "customer focused" store environment.

8. Demonstrate the ability to apply research, the concepts of strategic planning, and integrate the learning outcomes above by participation in the completion of a written/oral team project that develops a viable retail concept. The project will include but not be limited to:
- market/competitive research
- strategic plan
- store type and image
- physical attributes
- merchandise plan
- marketing plan
- advertising and promotional plan
- customer service requirements

9. Demonstrate from a practical business standpoint, how retail managers are able to improve the results of these financial variables:

- Marketing
- Reductions
- Gross Margin
- Turnover
- Shrinkage
- Sales Growth

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Accommodation for Students with Disabilities
The College will provide reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities in order to promote academic success. If you require accommodation, contact the Counselling and Accessibility Services Office at ext. 22900 to initiate the process for documenting, assessing and implementing your individual accommodation needs.