Newspaper article The Daily Yomiuri (Toyko, Japan)

Dept Stores Push Cosmetics after Users Stock Up, Run Out

Newspaper article The Daily Yomiuri (Toyko, Japan)

Dept Stores Push Cosmetics after Users Stock Up, Run Out

Article excerpt

Department stores have recently started to enhance their campaigns to promote cosmetics sales, which have slumped since April after a surge in demand just ahead of the consumption tax rate hike.

Targeting the period when supplies bought by shoppers late in March may be running out, department stores hope to attract the attention of female customers using various sales tactics.

The Seibu department store's flagship branch in Tokyo's Ikebukuro district set up a special 600-square-meter promotional area for cosmetics on the second floor of its annex.

It was the first time the store had made such arrangements in seven years.

From June 11, the first day of the opening of the space, to Sunday, sales of cosmetics were up about 15 percent more than had been estimated, according to the store.

For cosmetic items, which customers purchase on a regular basis, it is in general relatively ineffective to have an area for special promotions, but the store still expected the move to have some effect.

"Many customers stocked up such items [prior to the consumption tax hike] and they'll be soon using them up," said an official at Seibu.

In May, the Takashimaya department store in Nihonbashi, Tokyo, put out 50 percent more product promotion leaflets than the same time last year.

The main branch of Isetan department store in Shinjuku also increased the circulation of its cosmetics catalogs, by adding new customers who visited the store for the first time in March to the list, which had previously comprised only regular customers.

Cosmetics sales at department stores in the nation were up 61.2 percent in March compared to the same month last year, due to last-minute demand ahead of the tax hike. …

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