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Kohl’s Boosted New Customers By 9% Thanks To Amazon Returns: eMarketer

More retailers expected to follow suit with Amazon Returns

Kohl’s bet that partnering with Amazon to enable in-store returns would pay off in increased foot traffic was confirmed as a success by recent research from Earnest Research, eMarketer reported.

The pilot program, which Kohl’s first launched in the Los Angeles and Chicago markets in 2017, resulted in a 9 percent increase in new customers visiting and purchasing at participating Kohl’s stores in 2017 and 2018, a significant jump from the national average of 1 percent over the past two years.

This growth was accompanied by an 8 percent rise in overall revenue in the participating store locations, according to Earnest, vs. the 2 percent national average.

Backed by the results of the pilot, Kohl’s is expanding the program to all of its U.S. stores beginning July 1.

“They [Amazon] want to make sure their customers can use Amazon on all platforms,” retail analyst Hitha Herzog said on a recent Fox Business interview. “This is one way they can get that customer to go in and be able to obtain their packages … It’s another layer to Amazon making it easier for that customer, and we’re going to see Amazon partner with a lot more stores.”

In addition to enabling returns, Kohl’s, like may consumer retailers, also sells Amazon’s proprietary voice-control devices. According to RetailMeNot’s 2019 Retail Marketing survey, 96 percent of major retailers are investing in voice ordering technology to allow consumers to shop for their brand on smart home speakers.

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