In retail today, Affirm is partnering with Poshmark on a flexible payment program for shoppers. Additionally, digital rewards increase brand loyalty, and Rent the Runway is poised to meet an increase in weddings, special events, and return to work.
Rite Aid posts a solid year despite the closure of unprofitable stores
Rite Aid announced a strong close to its fourth quarter and fiscal year 2022, while also considering prospects in 2023 that would lead to the closure of 145 stores that have so far proven unprofitable.
Amid struggles to compete with pharmacies Walgreens, CVS Health and Walmart, Rite Aid is looking to cut costs, which includes closing stores already announced to be closed in December. Rite Aid reported losses that have only increased in recent months, totaling a loss of $7.18 per share for the period ending February 26, 2022.
Last month, Rite Aid chairman and chief executive Heyward Donigan said the company plans to streamline operations by eliminating the chief operating officer position and consolidating its pharmacy leadership. Pharmacy reimbursement pressures and competitive threats such as online retailer Amazon’s push into the pharmacy are forcing drugstore chains to seek new ways to reinvent their physical pharmacies.
Food remains Walmart’s only advantage over Amazon
Last year, Amazon captured nearly five times Walmart’s share of US household spending on electronics, appliances, sporting goods, hobbies, music and books. But Walmart still has an advantage in one category: food.
The average American household still spends about 10 times more on food and beverages at Walmart than at Amazon. Walmart has always had a comfortable lead over Amazon in this category, making a total of $264 billion in sales in 2021, compared to Amazon’s $27 billion.
Amazon has never taken more than 2.1% of total consumer spending on food and beverages and shows no signs of increasing that percentage any time soon. Since acquiring Whole Foods in 2018, Amazon’s share of food and beverage spend has grown from 1.7% to 2.1%, a headroom of just 0.4 percentage points.
Amazon’s Andy Jassy suggests other top-notch perks along the way
In his first letter to shareholders since taking the helm from Jeff Bezos in July, Amazon Chairman and CEO Andy Jassy gave a history lesson with some vision.
The Thursday, April 14 letter provided insight into how Jassy’s influence continues to shape what has become the world’s largest retailer in 2021, eventually bypassing arch-rival Walmart.
Saying that Amazon’s consumer business “achieved the equivalent of three years of projected growth in about 15 months,” he pointed to the logistical challenges that Amazon’s storied retail network has faced as the demand was growing, and how success poses its own challenges.
Smartphones and pop-up rewards ease the shock of inflation stickers and close the deal
In the latest ‘Expanding Payments Choice Playbook’, PYMNTS, in collaboration with Onbe, found that coupons for free products make customers 98% more likely to buy, with sweepstakes increasing the likelihood by 39%, and contests by 42.5%.
In a separate PYMNTS report, “The 2022 Global Digital Shopping Playbook”, PYMNTS found that 24% more physical shoppers in the United States used their smartphones to shop in stores in 2021 than in 2020, using them primarily to earn rewards.
As economies reopen and stores begin to bring foot traffic back to the aisles, consumers are bringing technology with devices as they return to physical outlets. The mobile device becomes the key place to present these same consumers with the contextual reward that can drive them to complete transactions.
General merchandise and appliances offset eComm weakness as March retail sales rise 0.5%
U.S. consumers continued to shop last month, pushing overall retail sales up 0.5% in March on the strength of general merchandise stores, such as Walmart and Target, and appliance retailers and electronics, including Best Buy.
Meanwhile, e-commerce, or so-called non-store retailers, saw the largest decline of the 16 major categories tracked in the government report, down 6.4% for the month, compared to strong comparisons from the previous year fueled by persistent COVID lockdowns and store closures.
According to the latest report from the US Commerce Department, the 0.5% increase in retail sales in March marks the smallest month-over-month increase since February 2021 and follows a revised February tally to the rise that improved February sales to 0.8% from a stall of 0.3%. originally reported.
Affirm Teams with Poshmark to Offer Shoppers Flexible Payments
Payments network Affirm is expanding its partnership with social marketplace Poshmark to provide increased payment flexibility for shoppers, according to a press release.
Poshmark was among the first companies to use Affirm’s Adaptive Checkout. Of Poshmark’s 80 million users, eligible shoppers can now tap Affirm and choose between monthly payments or four interest-free payments every two weeks for merchandise over $50.
This expanded partnership follows Affirm’s consumer spending report which showed that more than 50% of consumers want to use a remittance service to pay for their purchases this year. Approved Poshmark customers who select Affirm at checkout can split the total cost of their purchase into bi-weekly or monthly payments, for as low as 0% APR.
Lands’ End gets QVC showcase
Apparel and home decor retailer Lands’ End will feature women’s swimwear in its on-air debut on home shopping channel QVC at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, April 15, as part of an expansion of the the companies’ e-commerce relationship that began late last year, according to a Thursday, April 14, press release.
The women’s swimwear collection will include sizes 2 to 32 and range from small to large. It will also be featured on QVC’s digital platforms, according to the release. This decision is part of Lands’ End’s desire to find new platforms and collaborations to increase its audience.
Praise the runway preparations for an increase in weddings, events and back-to-work blazers
After doubling its revenue and subscribers last quarter, the country’s leading designer clothing rental platform aims to do it again, saying soaring inflation, combined with a surge in upcoming special events , will encourage not to buy new outfits.
Rent the Runway CEO Jennifer Hyman told investors and analysts during the 12-year-old company’s fourth quarter earnings report that she’s been waiting for an environment like this for a long time.
For the three months ending Jan. 31, the Brooklyn-based site said its revenue grew 91% while its active subscribers grew 110% to end the quarter and fiscal year at 115,000.
PYMNTS Intelligence: How Payment Orchestration Can Help Merchants Adapt to Changing Regulatory Requirements
U.S. e-commerce sales grew 14% year-over-year to reach $871 billion in 2021. Additionally, an increase in adoption of online and mobile payments in the Asia region – Pacific and Europe is expected to help drive 18% annual growth in cashless transactions globally. until 2025.
Lawmakers have moved to craft regulations to protect digital payments from fraudsters, money launderers, and other malicious actors. Businesses looking to accept a growing variety of digital payment methods must keep pace with these rules, including PCI DDS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) and 3D Secure requirements for credit and debit data, as well as the Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) standard. is taking shape in the European Union and the United Kingdom.
Report: Digital Incentives Boost Customer Loyalty
Incentives are an essential part of retail advertising, consisting of discounts, loyalty programs and other rewards for making purchases that encourage shoppers to buy more. Coupons for free products make customers 98% more likely to buy, sweepstakes increasing the likelihood by 39% and contests by 42.5%. Discounts, one of the most popular sales incentives, make customers over 75% more likely to make a purchase.
Onbe’s Future of Payments Research 2022 survey found that 74% of consumers prefer to make payments using digital methods. Another recent study found that over 70% of customers prefer dealing with businesses digitally rather than on paper, meaning the more online a business can be, the more customers it can gather.
PYMNTS’ latest Expanding Payments Choice Playbook® examines how businesses incentivize customers through discounts and other promotions, the factors that drive customers into digital payments, and how implementing digital incentives can help businesses maintain a competitive advantage in a crowded environment.