The Home Depot’s investments in enhancing its interconnected customer experience are yielding “solid returns,” including a 23% spike in online sales from its first quarter of 2018. Additionally, more than half (54%) of the retailer’s online U.S. orders were picked up in stores during its Q1 2019, a testament to its interconnected strategy, according to CEO Craig Menear.
“During the first quarter, we had record quarterly online business that helped drive 23% growth in our online business,” noted EVP of Merchandising Ted Decker. “As we continue to invest in the online experience and reduce friction, we see higher traffic and improved conversion rates.”
In addition to enhanced site functionality, The Home Depot is also expanding online assortments and working on providing next-day delivery for 50% of the U.S. by the end of its current quarter. The retailer also plans to onboard over 1 million customers to its new B2B website.
During Q1, Home Depot invested in stores to improve the front-end checkout experience, rolled out automated lockers, streamlined customer service desks and simplified tools for its associates. The company also hired 80,000 new associates for spring and said its new in-aisle mobile training solution, PocketGuide, provides them with “product knowledge at their fingertips to help them get up to speed quickly.”
“This has translated to reduced wait times and increased customer satisfaction as our customer service scores and checkout time satisfaction have increased over 500 basis points versus last year,” noted Menear. “Not only do these front-end investments have customer service and productivity benefits, they are also helping us to optimize store layouts to maximize merchandising space productivity and high traffic event in lay-down areas.”