Nordstrom: Price Menu Management Delivers Results

June 2010 Pricing

Going into the great recession, many commentators suggested and corporations undertook across the board price cuts. Many, but not all. Nordstrom took a different route. The results of their approach are in: better customer attraction, better profits, better post-recession positioning. In this article, we will examine some key strategic decisions made by Nordstrom which enabled their counter-trend approach to triumph over the oft quoted “best practices”.


“All I Really Need to Know I learned in Kindergarten.” Robert Fulghum

  1. “Say you’re sorry when you hurt someone.” Toyota should have done this earlier and more strongly.
  2. “Flush.” Nordstrom flushed the status quo and embraced change.
  3. “Play fair.” The intelligent customer-focused company will face its crises squarely and honestly and use the crisis to show its stakeholders that it is a responsible corporate citizen.
  4. “Share everything.” Nordstrom didn’t take all of the burden of the recession upon itself, it shared the need to alter the value proposition with its customers.
  5. “Remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned – the biggest word of all – LOOK.” Rather than blaming the crisis on loose floor mats, Toyota should have quickly assigned its top engineers to get to the root cause of the problem.
  6. “Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.” Be good to your customers. They are good for you.