Retail

Retailers See An eCommerce Boom

A number of retailers have recently seen a surge in eCommerce sales.

Lululemon revealed this week that online sales this past quarter increased 35 percent, while Target’s online sales rose 42 percent and Walmart reported 37 percent growth. In addition, online sales at Dick’s Sporting Goods got a 15 percent boost and Best Buy saw a 14.5 percent increase.

As a result, Walmart and Lululemon shares both saw a 52-week high on Thursday (June 13). Walmart’s stock has gained 16 percent this year and Lululemon’s stock is up more than 42 percent.

“Now, it’s easier in some ways to be a late mover,” in retailing online, Sucharita Kodali, a retail analyst at Forrester Research, said in an interview, according to CNBC.

She added that retailers like Lululemon and Walmart were at an advantage because they didn’t have to “reinvent the wheel” online, and could use “best practices” from more seasoned online companies. In fact, brick-and-mortar stores have learned how to utilize certain services, such as curbside pickup and buy online pick up in-store, to boost their sales.

Lululemon, for example, offers buy online pick up in-store options at around 150 of its 440 stores, and plans to expand the service to all of its locations by the end of the third quarter.

And during the first quarter of fiscal 2019, Target said its same-day delivery service, curbside and in-store pickup accounted for more than half of its 42 percent eCommerce sales growth, as well as 25 percent of same-store sales growth.

“Even today, on any given day, upwards of 50 percent of our orders are delivered next-day and it’s using our stores and their proximity as that advantage in our overall strategy,” Target CEO Brian Cornell told analysts last month. “We’re leveraging the fact that we’re so, so close to the guest … and convenience is a big part of our strategy.”

According to a study by Internet Retailer, the best “omnichannel” retailers in the country are currently Walmart, Target, Home Depot, Best Buy, Macy’s, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Kohl’s, Nordstrom, Lowe’s and J.C. Penney.

“Retailers that aren’t making omnichannel a priority do so at their peril, as shoppers are demanding these services,” the report said.

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