They're back: J. C. Penney adds sales

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NEW YORK
J.C. Penney is bringing back sales.

The struggling department store chain this week will begin adding back some of the hundreds of sales it ditched last year in hopes of luring shoppers who were turned off when the discounts disappeared, CEO Ron Johnson told The Associated Press.

Penney also plans to add price tags or signs for more than half of its merchandise to show customers how much they're saving by shopping at the chain a strategy used by a few other retailers. For store-branded items such as Arizona, Penney will show comparison prices from competitors.

The reversal comes on the eve of the one-year anniversary of its original vow to almost completely get rid of the sales that Americans covet but that cut into a store's profits. The idea was to offer everyday low prices that customers could count on rather than the nearly 600 fleeting discounts, coupons and sales it once offered.

The bold plan has been closely watched by others in the retail industry, which commonly offers deep discounts to draw shoppers. But so far the experiment has served as a cautionary tale of how difficult it is to change shoppers' habits: Penney next month is expected to report its fourth consecutive quarter of big sales drops and net losses. After losing more than half of its value, Penney's stock is trading at about $19. And the company's credit ratings are in junk status.

Johnson, who rolled out the pricing plan shortly after taking the top job in November 2011, told The Associated Press the latest moves are not a "deviation" from his strategy but rather an "evolution."

More here: http://www.ajc.com/ap/ap/texas/theyre-back-j-c-penney-adds-sales...

Member Summary
Most Recent Posts
So many idiots nowadays that "need" the "sale" in order to find a great price...

Sigh, looks like I can't go to JC Penney... (more)

technolich (Feb. 27, 2013 @ 8:07p) |

JCP also used to be a good place for medium tall clothes. Medium tall size seems to have disappeared. The reason my pu... (more)

BradMajors (Feb. 27, 2013 @ 9:47p) |

aadam101 (Apr. 09, 2013 @ 9:47a) |

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I went shopping one-time all of last year in JCP for a shirt, that I later returned new. It is amazing how far JCP has gone downhill. They used to be a good place to shop. Now Kohl's is the place for me.

When JCP changed their whole format, they lost me as a customer even in the catalog sales department, where most of my shopping was done. I made not one catalog purchase from them last year. This will probably continue.

JCP is going the way of K-Mart. When K-Mart was still open in my town, whenever I went shopping there, I would ask myself: 'What am I doing here?' and quickly left. I now say the same thing to myself about JCP. I just feel kind of out of place in their store now.

Although I won $220 in totally free stuff during 3 weeks of December with their Christmas button game
(which strangely Fatwallet had nearly NOTHING about, even though "the other site" had at least 59 pages of discussion in its main JCP Button giveaway thread),
and I got to know my local store really well during my button-gathering visits to every register and then during my what-can-I-possibly-get-with-all-these-certificates desperation loops (it's a really small JCP, and the stock was pretty low the whole month),
I always knew that it was not only my first significant exposure to their offerings, but also my last, because I was not impressed in the slightest, especially with their women's clothing range in my local store.

The button thing was a cute idea and the odds of winning certificates were so high that it was such a great payoff for relatively little effort. I was charmed by the buttons themselves (I managed to get all of the normal buttons, I think it was 50 designs or something, and I'll keep them). However, the underlying product/service/image they were promoting via the giveaway was so tired and mediocre, at least in my region, that it was a lost cause, unfortunately.

Though it's better than the Sears store in the same mall, which is inexpressibly bad.

I saw this in the news and it reminded me of the Airplane movie clip.
There's a sale at Penny's!

Now if they just bring back the $10 off $25 coupons, customers will flock back..

Need to bringback Off coupon and Customer Survey 15% coupon for great deals...
Stopped going to JCP after they stopped sale.

NantucketSunrise said:   Although I won $220 in totally free stuff during 3 weeks of December with their Christmas button game
(which strangely Fatwallet had nearly NOTHING about, even though "the other site" had at least 59 pages of discussion in its main JCP Button giveaway thread),
and I got to know my local store really well during my button-gathering visits to every register and then during my what-can-I-possibly-get-with-all-these-certificates desperation loops (it's a really small JCP, and the stock was pretty low the whole month),
I always knew that it was not only my first significant exposure to their offerings, but also my last, because I was not impressed in the slightest, especially with their women's clothing range in my local store.

The button thing was a cute idea and the odds of winning certificates were so high that it was such a great payoff for relatively little effort. I was charmed by the buttons themselves (I managed to get all of the normal buttons, I think it was 50 designs or something, and I'll keep them). However, the underlying product/service/image they were promoting via the giveaway was so tired and mediocre, at least in my region, that it was a lost cause, unfortunately.

Though it's better than the Sears store in the same mall, which is inexpressibly bad.


Since you seem pretty knowledgeable about the button promo and you noticed there was very little here about it, maybe you should have started a thread to enlighten the rest of us.

Haven't shopped at JCP since the sales went bust. Did stop by ONCE during Xmas and got 6 buttons. NOTHING.

allerobed said:   NantucketSunrise said:   Although I won $220 in totally free stuff during 3 weeks of December with their Christmas button game
(which strangely Fatwallet had nearly NOTHING about, even though "the other site" had at least 59 pages of discussion in its main JCP Button giveaway thread),
and I got to know my local store really well during my button-gathering visits to every register and then during my what-can-I-possibly-get-with-all-these-certificates desperation loops (it's a really small JCP, and the stock was pretty low the whole month),
I always knew that it was not only my first significant exposure to their offerings, but also my last, because I was not impressed in the slightest, especially with their women's clothing range in my local store.

The button thing was a cute idea and the odds of winning certificates were so high that it was such a great payoff for relatively little effort. I was charmed by the buttons themselves (I managed to get all of the normal buttons, I think it was 50 designs or something, and I'll keep them). However, the underlying product/service/image they were promoting via the giveaway was so tired and mediocre, at least in my region, that it was a lost cause, unfortunately.

Though it's better than the Sears store in the same mall, which is inexpressibly bad.


Since you seem pretty knowledgeable about the button promo and you noticed there was very little here about it, maybe you should have started a thread to enlighten the rest of us.
Ditto.

I wish they had the AUCTIONS and the FALLING PRICE part of there site from may years ago back.
the auctions started at 3AM every day and i got up for that every day. still have a lot of items i won like NFL shower curtin for $1.00 won about 20 of them about $34.00 REG. price cloth ones not plastic.

I second that Kohls is so mush better. I can't remember the last time I bought something from JCP. They're stuff is kinda crappy and sales aren't that great. Wouldn't be surprised if they eventually go out of business.

JC Penney's downfall is a crisis for me. I am tall (6'8") and thin (210 lbs) and their Large, Extra-Tall sized shirts were the only thing between me and walking around either swimming in a shirt (Extra Large, Tall) or looking like Baby Huey (Large, Tall).

Several months ago (maybe 6 months?) they changed all their sizing. I bought at least 10 Polo-style shirts that were Large, Extra-Tall. The short sleeves fit perfectly but the shirts themselves were down to my crotch.

I've tried every combination of sizes with their Polo-style shirts and nothing fits. Worse, their Oxford-style shirts have changed as well. I have 38" sleeves, 17" neck and my latest crop of shirts that I got from them are wearable, but all mishapen. They probably changed suppliers to lower their costs and therefore the prices they charge, but honestly for the old style of shirts I would've paid 3x the price for them.

Once my current set of shirts wears out...

I stopped shopping at JCPenney when I went in to pick up a ship-to-store package and discovered they no longer have child-friendly shopping carts. I usually have my stroller with me, but on this particular day, I didn't, and it proved to be a disastrous visit without it. I brought the situation to the attention of the manager and she simply dismissed it as the new corporate image. I also sent an email to JCP corporate, but my complaint went unacknowledged. So now I shop at Kohl's.

suderduperloo00p said:   I second that Kohls is so mush better. I can't remember the last time I bought something from JCP. They're stuff is kinda crappy and sales aren't that great. Wouldn't be surprised if they eventually go out of business.

Depends...

Kohl's inflate their prices and then puts everything on sale. Penny's prices are least were not that inflated and of course the sale would help.

MsFrugalShopper said:   I stopped shopping at JCPenney when I went in to pick up a ship-to-store package and discovered they no longer have child-friendly shopping carts. I usually have my stroller with me, but on this particular day, I didn't, and it proved to be a disastrous visit without it. I brought the situation to the attention of the manager and she simply dismissed it as the new corporate image. I also sent an email to JCP corporate, but my complaint went unacknowledged. So now I shop at Kohl's.

Gosh - the ship to store option is ridiculous since they got rid of the dedicated area and you would do it at any register. The idea was great, but the execution terrible. This is the process:

* Present online order information at any register
* Register prints out a location slip
* Cashier calls stock room for help
* Help comes to register to PICK LOCATION SLIP
* Help goes back to stock room to get item
* Help comes back with item

Why on earth couldn't they simply print the slip at the stock room and have the poor guy avoid a second unnecessary trip? A couple of times that I did shop online was like this:

* Cashier called 3 times and got no answer from stock room
* After 15' waiting, cashier leaves the register and goes to stock room
* After another 15' I get another cashier asking what's going on and leaves to the stock room
* After another 15' both cashiers come back with item

Or

* Cashier calls 3 times and gets no answer from stock room
* Right about when she's ready to go to the stock room, they answer
* Helper asks via radio for the detail (does not want to come over to get slip)
* After 15' helper comes to register with WRONG ITEM
* Helper gets slip, and while cursing goes back to stock room
* After 15' helper comes back with item

In the mean time, cashier says how stupid it was for JCP to change their sales tactics as they lost so much traffic and how ridiculous this method of online ordering is. INSANE!

Ordered for store pick up once and it was absolutely ridiculous how long it took and the stock person had to go back for the second item.... It will have to be one hell of a deal for me to bother going there again.

allerobed said:   [Since you seem pretty knowledgeable about the button promo and you noticed there was very little here about it, maybe you should have started a thread to enlighten the rest of us.

Well, when I came here to make a posting on that very subject in mid-December, I did my research like everyone is supposed to do before posting, and there was ALREADY a thread about it that everyone here had ignored (so you only have yourself to blame if you missed the buttons promotion).

I'm afraid that Fatwallet's policies about repeating information are so strict that if I had posted a second thread about the Penney buttons, it would have quickly been locked down, greyed out, and consigned to the dustbin.

(Just like my recent thread on free Amazon MP3s for every CD you've ever bought from Amazon since 1998 -- which was even given red here for being a "repost". AND I had looked that topic up before I posted it, but the Fatwallet search engine didn't return any threads on it, so I thought it was safe to post, but I guess it wasn't. So I got redded.)

...It's a tough crowd on Deal Discussion - you are damned if you do, damned if you don't!

cattlet said:    Ditto.

Like I explained to the other person above, when I first checked FW in December to see what people were saying about that promotion, there was already a Penneys button giveaway thread here that everyone had (apparently) ignored, so I knew that if I posted a second thread on the topic it would be labelled a "repost" and greyed out - and probably redded.

If some FW folks didn't catch on to the great deal when it was first mentioned in its own thread here, that was nothing to do with me!

Eh, it's all a word game. JCP never really got rid of sales in the first place - what they got rid of was the "imaginary pricing" where you had to play a complicated game of coupons and percent-off signs to get the best deals. FWers were really good at this, of course, so they benefited - but getting to those deals could be exhausting.

My experience: I have been finding consistently better bargains there, and better-quality stuff, since the change. The difference was that the "sales" tended to be on merchandise that was still relatively new, as opposed to stuff that'd been hanging around forever and often looked all pawed and grubby. But the clearance deals were still there too; I got two pairs of jeans for $4 each just after Christmas, and several nice tops as well.

My sisters and I were talking about this a few weeks ago and we agreed we liked the new JCP a lot more than we thought we would. I think a lot of people assumed there would be no more good deals and stopped looking, but it became a regular stop for me.

Thanks, I thought that we were the only family in USA that likes J C Penny. JCP deals are consistently better than Kohl's with exception of small elctricals. Price, Merchandise and Quality is way better than Kohl's.

wordgirl said:   Eh, it's all a word game. JCP never really got rid of sales in the first place - what they got rid of was the "imaginary pricing" where you had to play a complicated game of coupons and percent-off signs to get the best deals. FWers were really good at this, of course, so they benefited - but getting to those deals could be exhausting.

My experience: I have been finding consistently better bargains there, and better-quality stuff, since the change. The difference was that the "sales" tended to be on merchandise that was still relatively new, as opposed to stuff that'd been hanging around forever and often looked all pawed and grubby. But the clearance deals were still there too; I got two pairs of jeans for $4 each just after Christmas, and several nice tops as well.

My sisters and I were talking about this a few weeks ago and we agreed we liked the new JCP a lot more than we thought we would. I think a lot of people assumed there would be no more good deals and stopped looking, but it became a regular stop for me.

suderduperloo00p said:   I second that Kohls is so mush better. I can't remember the last time I bought something from JCP. They're stuff is kinda crappy and sales aren't that great. Wouldn't be surprised if they eventually go out of business.

Kohl's in my area is cleaner and less crowded. That said, I used to shop at JCP with all their $10 off $25 coupons. Then they decided to go upscale and I don't belong to their targeted customers anymore. I went back once or twice last year. No more excitement in finding s great deal with coupons. Sterile, boring, Macy's wannabe. There is no shame for JCP to fire that Apple guy and returns to its old self. I will be first in line to shop then.

wordgirl said:   Eh, it's all a word game. JCP never really got rid of sales in the first place - what they got rid of was the "imaginary pricing" where you had to play a complicated game of coupons and percent-off signs to get the best deals. FWers were really good at this, of course, so they benefited - but getting to those deals could be exhausting.

My experience: I have been finding consistently better bargains there, and better-quality stuff, since the change. The difference was that the "sales" tended to be on merchandise that was still relatively new, as opposed to stuff that'd been hanging around forever and often looked all pawed and grubby. But the clearance deals were still there too; I got two pairs of jeans for $4 each just after Christmas, and several nice tops as well.

My sisters and I were talking about this a few weeks ago and we agreed we liked the new JCP a lot more than we thought we would. I think a lot of people assumed there would be no more good deals and stopped looking, but it became a regular stop for me.


Exactly!

hope they don't change the liberal return policy...

time to replace this 'new' CEO w/a newer model. Preferably one that has adequate retail experience. This guy was a JOKE!!!

I guess there are deals to be found at the new JCP as some of you said. I just found the new image to uppity for me. May be I should go back and check it out. Meanwhile, is that new CEO still trying to transform JCP stores into Apple stores?

NantucketSunrise said:   allerobed said:   [Since you seem pretty knowledgeable about the button promo and you noticed there was very little here about it, maybe you should have started a thread to enlighten the rest of us.

Well, when I came here to make a posting on that very subject in mid-December, I did my research like everyone is supposed to do before posting, and there was ALREADY a thread about it that everyone here had ignored (so you only have yourself to blame if you missed the buttons promotion).

I'm afraid that Fatwallet's policies about repeating information are so strict that if I had posted a second thread about the Penney buttons, it would have quickly been locked down, greyed out, and consigned to the dustbin.

(Just like my recent thread on free Amazon MP3s for every CD you've ever bought from Amazon since 1998 -- which was even given red here for being a "repost". AND I had looked that topic up before I posted it, but the Fatwallet search engine didn't return any threads on it, so I thought it was safe to post, but I guess it wasn't. So I got redded.)

...It's a tough crowd on Deal Discussion - you are damned if you do, damned if you don't!


My fatwallet search engine is Google, example Google "JCPenney Button site:fatwallet.com". The site:xxxxxx.com limits google to just that domain. This works great for finding stuff at Microsoft too.

JC PENNEY RETAILER DEATHWATCH - WSJ

(ok, so not a deathwatch, but 4Q numbers were bad, and you kinda have to try really hard to lose 4 billion dollars in retail revenue in one year, wtg Ron Jon)


---


Penney Posts Large Loss as Sales Sink Further

By DANA MATTIOLI

The bill for J.C. Penney Co.'s JCP +0.67% first year under Chief Executive Ron Johnson is in, and it's about $4.3 billion.

That's how much sales at the department store chain dropped in the 12 months after the formal Apple Inc. AAPL -0.98% executive cut back on discounts and rolled out a plan to fill stores with dozens of branded boutiques.

Declines worsened through the year, with sales down 28.4% from a year earlier in the fourth quarter, which spans the Crucial holiday selling period. The company reported a fourth-quarter loss of $552 million, its worst of the year, and held $930 million in cash on Feb. 2, a decline of 38% from a year earlier.

For the full fiscal year, Penney had a loss of $985 million, compared to a $152 million loss the year before.

The results are a comedown for Mr. Johnson, who arrived with great fanfare from Apple in November 2011 with ambitions to remake a chain that had sold inexpensive clothes to middle-American shoppers for decades.

The CEO warned investors when he announced the turnaround strategy a little more than a year ago that the changes would involve some pain at first, but he said at the time that the back half of the first year would be stronger than the first and predicted the company would turn a profit during the first year of the transformation.

With those targets blown, his key tasks are stopping the slide in sales and making sure the company has enough cash to complete the job.

"All we need this year is to return to growth, whether it's 1%, 5%, 10%," Mr. Johnson said in an interview late last month. "When we return to growth, we can generate cash. If we start with right amount of cash, we just continue with transformation."

If sales don't begin to recover soon, shareholders and directors may lose patience and move to shift the company's strategic direction, people familiar with the board's thinking said.

Penney said in November it aimed to end the year with $1 billion of cash, a target it fell short of. The company's shares dropped by more than 9% in after-hours trading, after the results were released.

When Mr. Johnson stepped into the top job at Penney's, sales had been on a downward path since 2007. But right after his new strategy was implemented on Feb. 1, 2012, they plunged. Mr. Johnson eased back from his hardline prohibition of sales and coupons last summer, but customers have stayed away.

In August, Mr. Johnson sent an email to Penney's database of 15 million customers with a link to a survey about the CEO and the changes at the chain's stores, according to internal documents reviewed by The wall street journal. A sample of 600 responses was selected at random. Of the feedback, 67% was negative, particularly on the topics of coupons, sales, prices, merchandise and advertising, according to the documents.

"Many [customers] describe a lifelong relationship with jcp and are struggling with our recent changes," one document said.

Penney didn't respond to requests for comment about the survey, but on Wednesday's earnings conference call, Mr. Johnson said that Penney would offer sales "each and every week as we move forward."

Mr. Johnson is hoping sales in fiscal 2013 improve as he rolls out more boutiques and new merchandise hits stores. In March, the company will launch its partnership with Joe Fresh, a brand that specializes in bright, youthful clothes at low prices.

Some vendors are also losing patience. One vendor said it had paid for architecture and plans for its boutiques, only to be told by Penney that the rollout would be delayed by a year. Vendors also say Penney is ordering low levels of goods instead of preparing for growth.

Mr. Johnson has rolled out a new ad campaign that stresses Penney's prices. The CEO said it is gaining traction with customers.

Showing sales growth should be easier for the company in the quarters ahead, when results will be compared with the past year's dismal results.

Mr. Johnson hasn't been specific when pressed when he expects to see improvements, but still believes it can be accomplished under the current strategy.

"You could always add more coupons or add more sales," he said in the interview, "but I honestly don't believe we'll have to do that."

So many idiots nowadays that "need" the "sale" in order to find a great price...

Sigh, looks like I can't go to JC Penneys anymore.

I supported them when they decided to stop doing "sales" and lowered their prices, it's a shame that the "average" person is so easily manipulated.

Informed consumer my arse, sales are a psychological tool to train "good" obedient consumers.

FinancialAnalyst said:   JC Penney's downfall is a crisis for me. I am tall (6'8") and thin (210 lbs) and their Large, Extra-Tall sized shirts were the only thing between me and walking around either swimming in a shirt (Extra Large, Tall) or looking like Baby Huey (Large, Tall).

Several months ago (maybe 6 months?) they changed all their sizing. I bought at least 10 Polo-style shirts that were Large, Extra-Tall. The short sleeves fit perfectly but the shirts themselves were down to my crotch.

I've tried every combination of sizes with their Polo-style shirts and nothing fits. Worse, their Oxford-style shirts have changed as well. I have 38" sleeves, 17" neck and my latest crop of shirts that I got from them are wearable, but all mishapen. They probably changed suppliers to lower their costs and therefore the prices they charge, but honestly for the old style of shirts I would've paid 3x the price for them.

Once my current set of shirts wears out...

JCP also used to be a good place for medium tall clothes. Medium tall size seems to have disappeared. The reason my purchases have declined at JCP is because they stop carrying clothes that fit me.




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