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%.
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.
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.
Over the past three years, Walgreens has been culling the number of products it has been carrying under its private label brands, placing a greater emphasis on categories like health and beauty care, while at the same time creating new brands around certain categories to help them stand out more.
Through the official partnership, VF gets access to data from Alibaba’s 654 million-customer database across its marketplaces, including Tmall and Taobao. With that data and TMIC, VF can more readily identify customer trends, test new products before launching them, build customer data profiles and track products post-launch in order to judge how well they’re performing with Chinese customers.
Pet retailer Chewy made a splash on the stock market this week. The online company priced its initial offering at about $22 per share, valuing it at $8.77 billion. On Friday, shares climbed to $39, and the company raised $1 billion in the IPO. PetSmart bought Chewy in 2017 for $3.4 billion, but spun it off in order to help pay down its debt.
It’s not Amazon’s existence or cut-throat competitive strategies that have sealed the fate of other retailers that are losing market share, like JCPenney, Bed Bath & Beyond and Sears. Instead, it was a series of executional and strategic missteps over a critical window of time during which today’s better-equipped competitors were taking action in areas like e-commerce and logistics as well as experiences and services.
In the past, Foot Locker had to figure out how to market products from companies like Adidas and Nike after it had already been created. Now, CMO Jed Berger and Foot Locker are working more closely with vendors to develop product exclusively for their stores, using customer data and insight from Berger’s marketing team that its vendor partners don’t have access to.
Fashion resellers do not have access to the same tools and strategies that brands and retailers can employ, like collaborating on a new product or dropping a hyped collection. Instead, they have to turn to other strategies to draw attention and bring in new customers. Celebrity closet sales are one way that resellers are making that happen.
Store fulfillment for online orders is something Target has been investing in heavily. Through a combination of ship-from-store, same day delivery powered by Shipt and in-store order pick-up and drive-up options, Target stores now fulfill 80% of online orders. As CEO Brian Cornell told investors during the company’s first-quarter results for 2019, it’s an operation that’s profitable for Target.
At the Modern Retail Summit, retail marketers will discuss everything from the Amazon effect to new infrastructure to the shift in the direct-to-consumer world.Book Passes