As Amazon's Prime Day expands from one, then one-and-a-half, to two days (taking place this year on July 15 and 16), retailers are bulking up their competitive defense strategies as well. This year, Target, Nordstrom, Walmart, eBay, and a slew of others announced a series of deals on the same days as Prime Days. More retailers are participating in the mid-summer sales event than in the past, too: RetailMeNot estimates that this year over 250 competitors will be offering some form of deals this summer, up from 194 last year.
Levi's has been expanding into new categories and exploring more direct ways to make sales, and has seen some favorable results. Menswear sales were up 6$, and womenswear rose 16%. But this growth offset one big decline: US wholesale. In total, wholesale in the United States dropped 2%. "It's a little bit of a melting iceberg," CEO Chip Bergh said.
Accurate consumer data is a goldmine for companies. While businesses have sought out feedback to inform future product design, DTCs provide a strengthened relationship between brand and customer. With this, more digitally-native startups are able to capitalize on data to receive quick and informative feedback.
The Dick's partnership is the first time that Story is partnering with another retailer, since it got acquired by Macy's in 2018. While "it's a little atypical for a retailer to sponsor another retailer," it's something that Macy's is looking to do more of, according to Story's founder and now Macy's brand experience offer Rachel Shechtman.
Nike's direct-to-consumer sales continue to grow consistently, but investments in digital capabilities and real estate continue to eat into the athleticwear company's profit margins. The athletic apparel company reported during its fourth quarter earnings on Thursday that sales from Nike Direct totaled $11.8 billion during its fiscal year 2019, up 13% from last year. To grow DTC sales, Nike has focused on directing customers to sign up for its free NikePlus app.
Nordstrom, Kohl's and Macy's are doing a lot of "new retail" right, but retooling the department store for modern customers involves more than just updates to store models, influencer collaborations or e-commerce initiatives -- these stores are competing in a new retail landscape that has called the value proposition of a department store into question.
The retailer, first opened by tailor Fred Segal in 1961, had its heyday in the nineties and early aughts, when it became the first to sell Kate Spade and Juicy Couture, and served as a popular haunt of Paris Hilton and the Olsen twins. Though it’s recently faced instability, its growth plans are unprecedentedly ambitious. As its new owner sees it, with today’s consumers craving authenticity, the brand’s reputation is the ultimate foundation.
After several quarters of successful growth, Vera Bradley is attempting to turn its positive earnings into long-term success with the acquisition of millennial jewelry brand Pura Vida. The transaction, finalized on Thursday, saw Vera Bradley taking 75% control over Pura Vida for $75 million, only a little more than the Pura Vida’s $68.3 million in revenue from last year. Vera Bradley’s revenue for the same period was around $416 million, in comparison.
Walmart is aggressively testing new delivery capabilities – both built in house and in partnership with startups – as the retailer prepares for a delivery war with Amazon. Within the past two weeks, Walmart has announced that it's testing in-home grocery delivery, piloting a grocery delivery subscription service, and, most recently, partnering with a Silicon Valley startup called Gartik to test out using autonomous trucks to deliver goods between warehouses and fulfillment centers.
Kroger's digital sales are increasing as the company invests more in services like delivery and in-store pickup, but they continue to eat into the company's profits. During its first quarter earnings on Thursday, Kroger reported that digital sales were up 42% compared to the same period last year, but same-store sales excluding fuel were up just 1.5%.
In the last 18 months, Rocksbox's private-label products, made up of eight different brands, have grown from 25% of its total inventory to 85%, and private-label products are driving about 85% of sales for the company.
As a retailer targeting teens, Forever 21 faces stiff competition as bankruptcy has rattled the category. But Forever 21's specialty -- fast, disposable fashion released on a seemingly never-ending cadence -- has helped to protect it. Middle-of-the-road retail has been susceptible to being squeezed out as customers skew to the high and low ends of fashion's totem pole.
Plus-size and extended-size fashion brands are launching by the droves, no thanks to wholesale partners. Rather than retailers' buy-in, the direct-to-consumer model's proven success is giving brand founders the go-ahead. More brands are launching to cater to women above a size 14, and are relying on the direct-to-consumer business model rather than wholesale to reach their customer.
With Delivery Unlimited, Walmart is adding another option to its suite of delivery services that get orders to customers on a same-day basis, upping competition against Amazon and Target, as well as cross-retailer services like Instacart. It’s the latest in a string of additions to Walmart delivery options.
Amid store closure closures left and right by mass brands from Gap to Victoria’s Secret, malls are being forced to figure it out or face their fate. The former has translated to offering leases customized to emerging brands’ needs (ample perks included), bringing in businesses that deviate far from retail, and giving potential visitors a trip-worthy experience by getting thoughtful about the amenities and ambiance provided.
It’s normal for digital marketers to feel overwhelmed when dealing with the challenges that can come with a major launch, but when armed with the right tools and know-how to combat the most common obstacles, your team can set sail without a hitch.
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