Top 10 Specialty Retailers for 2016 Revealed

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Top 10 Specialty Retailers for 2016 Revealed

By Tim Denman - 03/22/2016

It has not been a particularly great year for retailers, and the specialty segment is no exception. Most niche and mall-based retailers are struggling to keep the coffers full as foot traffic continues to decrease across the segment.
 
Only seven of the 35 retailers scrutinized in RIS' annual ranking of the specialty segment scored positive year-over-year returns in all three of the financial categories examined. While the segment overall struggled, those retailers that cracked the top 10 are leading the pack and advancing both the industry and their organizations.
 
RIS News and research partner wRatings scored the members of the Top 10  in seven crucial metrics that examined not only a company’s financial position but its social initiatives, customer loyalty and employee satisfaction.
 
The entire report can be downloaded for free here. Below is a sneak peak at the specialty retailers that finished in ninth and tenth place this year. Be sure the download the full ranking to see the other segment leaders that made the ranking.  

#9 Best Buy
 
Best Buy has been named to this ranking for the third consecutive year thanks to its above average score in nearly every category examined. The only metric that the retailer scored below the curve was revenue, turning in a 4% decrease year-over-year. The electronics market has softened over the past few years, and Best Buy has been focused on supplementing lost sales in mobile phones and tablets with sales increases in appliances and service contracts. The retailer has seen its greatest growth in its digital channels, with e-commerce revenue increasing to 15.6% of total domestic revenue.
 
#10 Ulta Beauty
 
Ulta is increasing its store footprint at impressive speeds, opening 100 new stores in 2015, raising its total store count to 874 and growing. As can be expected, as new stores came onboard sales grew, increasing by over 20% year-over-year, but that is not the whole story. More impressively is the retailer’s 12.8% total company comp in Q3 2015, the highest since the company went public in 2007, prompting a 12.8% rise in share prices overnight in early December. The late-year jump in stock value contributed to a 37.3% overall increase year-over-year, the second highest increase among those examined in this ranking.