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US Retail Sales Were Up in December, But …

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Not everyone benefited equally.

Overall retail sales were up in December from the same month a year earlier, but not everyone in the sector benefited equally from the gains, according to new figures from the U.S. Commerce Department.

Department stores actually saw their sales drop 7.2 percent compared with the year-ago period, Bloomberg reports. At the same time, online retailers and other non-store businesses saw their sales rise 10.4 percent.

The figures come as large retailers such as Macy’s and Sears have announced store closings.

Amazon.com, meanwhile, said this month that it will create 100,000 jobs across the U.S. during an expansion over the next year-and-a-half, Bloomberg notes.

Still, bricks-and-mortar stores can thrive, as Jim Cramer, host of CNBC’s Mad Money, recently explained. He said the key to success in a mall location is to appeal to high-end customers.

Read more at Bloomberg.

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Moving Up — Not Out — with Wilkerson

Trish Parks has always wanted to be in the jewelry business and that passion has fueled her success. The original Corinth Jewelers opened in the Mississippi town of the same name in 2007. This year, Parks moved her business from its original strip mall location to a 10,000-square foot standalone store. To make room for fresh, new merchandise, she asked Wilkerson to organize a moving sale. “What I remember most about the sale is the outpouring excitement and appreciation from our customers,” says Parks. Would she recommend Wilkerson to other jewelers? “I would recommend Wilkerson because they came in, did what they were supposed to and made us all comfortable. And we met our goals.”

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