Give this a read. Today's catalog is a lot like an album, isn't it? And the references to video games and the iPhone are interesting to take note of.
The album has a dozen or more songs from an artist, and comes out once every "x" years. We all know that only one or two of the songs are exceptional, so we go online to find what we want.
Catalogs have a hundred pages, and come out once every "y" weeks. We all know that only one or two of the items are what we want, and then we go online to comparison shop and ultimately make our decision.
The internet is obliterating tradition. After being on the wrong side of a technology shift at Nordstrom in 2004, I vowed to do my best to not be on the wrong side of technology again. We're locked in a fascinating shift from profitable channels to popular channels that are hard to monetize.