Fitness Takes the Lead: Dick’s Sporting Goods Emerges as Priority in Consumer Budgets 

Shoppers are exercising increased prudence in terms of nonessential expenditures. This trend is a hot topic within the retail sector, from everyday grocery shopping to high-end luxury purchases. However, if the nonessential product you offer aligns with consumer priorities, you’re in a favorable position. This is the fortunate situation that Dick’s Sporting Goods has been experiencing, not just during the current quarter but consistently over a significant period. 

“It is really clear and important to note that our consumer is doing very well. And I think what we used to consider as a discretionary category has become something that’s very important to them and something they’re voting with their wallet, that they want to maintain a healthy active lifestyle team sports running, walking all of these things,” said Dick’s Sporting Goods President Lauren Hobart on Tuesday (Aug. 22), during the company’s Q2 2023 earnings call. 

According to the company’s second-quarter earnings report, the retailer Dick’s House of Sports has generated “powerful results.” During the quarter, Dick’s opened seven new locations, and in early August, two additional locations were opened.  

Dick’s House of Sport stores are experiencing strong performance, with significant double-digit comp growth in July compared to previous periods for locations of similar size. The company currently operates 12 sports stores, with plans to open 10 more in 2024. The goal is to have 75 to 100 stores nationwide by 2027. 

“I’ve had the opportunity to visit many of these stores in recent months, and I left each visit proud of our team and inspired by the athlete experience they’re providing,” said Hobart. 

Apart from House of Sport, the company is set to progressively introduce its new-generation Dick’s store concept, which fundamentally transforms the standard 50,000-square-foot layout. The store draws inspiration from the House of Sport concept, showcasing an elevated range of products, service approach, enhanced visual displays, and premium offerings. Following the favorable response to the initial launch, two more locations have been unveiled, resulting in notably robust overall sales performance. 

Crediting the success of these store experiences is Dick’s product assortment. The company noted that in terms of category performance, footwear and team sports performed well. In apparel, Dick’s continues to gain share and saw strength across key brands, including Nike and the flagship vertical brands. 

Apart from communicating an engaging customer experience, Dick’s Sporting Goods also highlighted concerns regarding retail theft. The company emphasized that this issue is detrimental to its operations, potentially resulting in reduced annual profits. 

The company attributed its earnings performance to “shrink,” an industry term encompassing theft and inventory damage. Other retailers to note retail theft during Q2 2023 earnings calls were Home Depot, Target and Walmart. 

“Shrink has been a consistent pressure over the last several quarters and even the last few years. It’s something we’re tackling every day,” Home Depot CFO Richard McPhail said on the company’s earnings call.  

Based on data gathered in 2021, as evident in the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) National Retail Security Survey, the issue of retail shrinkage incurred an approximate cost of nearly $100 billion for the industry. This amount is twice the $45.2 billion reported in 2015. The concerns are not confined to simple shoplifting; they also include organized retail crime and employee theft. 

Read more: Retail Theft Costs US Merchants Like Walmart and Target $100 Billion a Year 

Dick’s Sporting Goods By the Numbers

Dick’s Sporting Goods disclosed a net income of $244 million for the quarter concluding on July 29, marking a decline from the previous year’s $318.5 million. Conversely, sales increased to $3.22 billion, up from $3.11 billion during the same period in the prior year.