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Eve’s Addiction revamps e-commerce site

BY Dan Berthiaume

Old Saybrook, Conn. — Eve’s Addiction has redesigned its e-commerce site. With more 6,000 items on the site, the Eve’s Addiction team studied Web data from the past year to figure out how to best present their product offerings for the optimal online store experience.

The team eliminated the left navigation from the old design and added a drop down menu that featured gifts by recipients, material, and category. The redesign also highlighted bestselling products and provided a more accessible internal site search. Eve’s Addiction says these changes and many others led to an immediate increase in engagement and satisfaction among shoppers. Future design enhancements are planned.

"Once we understood our customer segments, we planned a simple and comprehensive design that worked well for everyone," said director of site design & front end development Alison Yuhas. "There are self-purchasers, gift purchasers, and other ways to segment our audience. We wanted to deliver the best way for all types of shoppers to interact with our site."

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Safeway completes Blackhawk spinoff

BY Dan Berthiaume

Pleasanton, Calif. – Safeway Inc. has completed the distribution to its stockholders of 37.8 million shares of Class B common stock of Blackhawk Networks Holdings Inc. owned by Safeway. After the completion of the distribution, Safeway no longer owns any shares of Class B common stock of Blackhawk.

The distribution by Safeway was made in the form of a pro rata common stock dividend, of its Class B common stock equity interest in Blackhawk to all Safeway stockholders of record on April 3. Safeway stockholders will receive cash in lieu of any fraction of a share of Blackhawk Class B common stock that they otherwise would have received. Starting on April 15, the when-issued market for Safeway common stock on the New York Stock Exchange will no longer be available.

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Pep Boys “Road Ahead” involves omnichannel acceleration

BY CSA STAFF

Pep Boys is looking to accelerate a range of digital and physical offerings as part of a strategy called, “Road Ahead,” after the omnichannel efforts resulted in 152% growth.

Pep Boys operates 800 locations in 35 states with 7,500 service bays which differentiates the company from parts-only players such as AutoZone and Advance Auto Parts who perform basic services in their parking lots such as changing batteries or wiper blades.

“Our new Road Ahead strategy includes strong growth from our digital omnichannel initiatives,” said Pep Boys president and CEO Mike Odell. “Overall, sales from service appointments made online, tires purchased online and installed in our service bays, and products purchased online for store pick up or home delivery grew 152% in the fourth quarter.”

According to Odell, the company’s vision is to be the best alternative to the dealer and the Road Ahead strategy is all about leveraging the retail business to drive the service business.

“Our first completed Road Ahead market in Tampa continues to produce returns in line with our 15% hurdle rate,” Odell said. “Based on those results, we are moving forward to complete an additional 20 stores in three markets – San Francisco, Boston and Charlotte – during the first half of 2014 and initiating plans for an additional three markets to be completed in late 2014 or early 2015.”

Acceleration of the Road Ahead strategy comes as Pep Boy reported weak results for its fourth quarter ended February 1. Sales for the 13 week period declined 6.6% to $35.1 million, but excluding the extra week from the prior year fourth quarter Pep Boys mustered a 0.2% sales increase. A 2.4% same store sales decline was driven by a 3.4% decline in same store merchandise sales offset by a 1.4% increase in same store service sales. The company reported a loss of $3.3 million, or six cents a share, compared to a loss of $14.5 million, or 27 cents a share, the prior year.

“On a comparable store basis, customer count, maintenance and repair sales and tire units all grew quarter over quarter,” Odell said. “While retail tire pricing has recently stabilized, prices are still below last year’s level, which has and is expected to continue to negatively impact top line sales results through the second quarter of 2014. We are also growing our service footprint, adding 30 Service and Tire Centers during fiscal 2014. These new Service and Tire Centers showcase the welcoming exterior curb appeal and comfortable customer lounge of our new ‘Road Ahead’ format.”

Full year sales declined 1.2% to slightly more than $2 billion, but excluding the extra week from the prior year increased by 1.6%. A 1.3% same store sales decline consisted of a 1.6% service sales increase offset by a 2.1% merchandise sales decrease.

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