Williams-Sonoma recorded e-commerce comps exceeding 31%. While the numbers are big, they're not terribly surprising. The home goods company has invested in digital programs for years -- beginning as far back as 1998. Now, those bets are paying off. What's more, Williams-Sonoma invested more in new digital tools when the coronavirus first hit. Compared to other big retailers, these results show when digital investment really pays off.
Global retail markets are beginning to reopen. The question remains whether consumers are ready to go back into public. With lockdown restrictions now being eased by some governments, small green shoots of recovery are beginning to emerge. Modern Retail and Glossy reporters took a (virtual) trip around the globe to see where shopping is beginning to restart and if shoppers are ready to spend money once again in the real world.
Off-price retailers have historically ignored e-commerce, because their shoppers have proven that they still prefer visiting a store to search through piles of inventory in order to find a good deal. However, the coronavirus crisis has highlighted the shortcomings of that approach. Nordstrom's latest earnings highlights this strategic misstep.
Many retailers and companies rely on people testing out their products. But with social distancing in place and many stores closed, that gets much more difficult. For some, it may mean sampling is completely off the table. For others, it means introducing new operations and safeguards that were never thought of before.
King Arthur's flour has been flying off the shelves -- both in grocery stores and digitally. The company has seen record website traffic and its DTC sales have doubled. To deal with this influx, the centuries-old flour brand has had to quickly adapt. Modern Retail spoke with its vp of marketing about how King Arthur's digital strategy has shifted and what the future of flour sales will look like.
Many current retail start-up founders didn't have the chance to learn from the 2008 financial crisis because "they were potentially in high school," according to seed stage investor Hunter Walk. And even for those entrepreneurs who survived the last global downturn, the big takeaways might not apply to current circumstances. "The answers from those entrepreneurs in 2008 may or not be the right answers for companies in 2020. But the questions they asked themselves might be the things that are evergreen. And so asking some of those questions of yourself as a founder who might be going through this the first time -- I think that's where it gets valuable," Walk said on the Modern Retail Podcast.
Most American shoppers are still “fearful to shop at a grocery store." The lack of delivery slots combined with a rising unemployment rate and shopping-related health risks, is resulting in a decline in cross-shopping. Grocery stores, as a result, are trying to focus more on marketing as one-stop shops. And they're seeing results too: average basket sizes have dramatically increased.
When Nordstrom opened its New York City flagship last October, it was the epitome of experiential retail. Now, all of those experiential elements that were supposed to make the store a must-visit may deter customers. Retailers are having to rethink their experiential retail strategy, and what experiences will win over customers.
Stores are slowly reopening, but they are about to look very different. Fewer people will be inside and the technology will be used to perform easy tasks. We took a look at all of the facets required to rebuild the retail experience. While some of it may look similar to before, a lot of thought is taking place. Come on in and take a look.
CPGs are currently in a mad dash to solidify their DTC strategies. Clorox has been building out its team for the last year and half. It's both launched new brands and focused on building out more direct sales strategies with older ones. The company's vp and general manager of DTC spoke with Modern Retail about the company's strategy, and how it's recently been accelerated.
Grove Collaborative, during the height of the coronavirus pandemic, still had hand sanitizer in stock. Rather than use that as a customer acquisition tool, he prioritized existing customers for the items available. "We probably left a lot of money on the table by doing that, in the short term," CEO Stuart Landesberg said on the Modern Retail podcast. He discussed how he's approaching growth for his home supplies brand.
Home Depot saw a huge revenue spike this past quarter -- as well as many more customers utilize its digital offerings. This is a long time company for the home improvement retailer. It has spent many years bolstering its digital infrastructure but hadn't yet seen the fruits of those labors. We now see why the investment paid off.
"Obviously, it’s impossible to pin a garment at a six foot distance," said Suitsupply CEO Fokke de Jong. This prompted him to think outside the box by installing clear, free-standing partitions for fitting areas. But the overall strategy focuses on starting the shopper's journey before arriving at the store, including encouraging virtual co-browsing and fitting room reservations, to increase efficiency and reduce contact.
Walmart has proven to be one of the retail winners over the last couple of months, as both its stores and its website drew strong sales. During its first quarter earnings on Tuesday, Walmart reported that total revenue was $10.7 billion, up 8.6% year-over-year. The past couple of months have shown just how far Walmart has come in building an e-commerce behemoth.
JCPenney was once an e-commerce leader. Then the department store made a series of strategic missteps. During its most recent quarterly earnings report, the company posted $3.4 billion in sales, an 8% decrease from the same period a year earlier. Meanwhile, the company owes $4 billion in debt. Now, it's filing for bankruptcy. How did JCPenney get here? Looking at its failed digital strategy helps illuminate some bigger systemic problems.
Increasingly, retailers with a brick-and-mortar presence are providing offline sales data to brands that advertise on their e-commerce sites. As a result, e-commerce advertisers are gaining more insights into how and when online ads lead to in-store sales.
The Amazon Advertising Strategies Virtual Forum is a series of presentations, workshops and talks taking place over three mornings that’ll help you navigate and survive our current crisis and the acceleration of e-commerce that has come with it.Register Now