Macy’s Finds Ray of Hope in Double-Digit Digital Sales Growth

There’s one thing that’s for certain: Macy’s is a retail warrior and survivor. Despite a challenging 2016 that saw the retailer appoint a new CMO, announce that long-time CEO Terry Lundgren will step down in 2017, shudder stores, and – of course – roll out multiple technology investments Macy’s continues to soldier on. With a hectic and difficult 2016 nearly in the rearview Macy’s can hang its hat on the fact that as 2016 comes to a close it digital business reported another strong quarter, with double-digit gains at both and in Q3 2016.
“We continue to benefit from both the restructuring that we completed at year-end 2015, and also the store closures,” commented Macy’s CFO Karen Hoguet on a recent call with investors.

“But these benefits are being more than offset by other increases including selling, where we are investing in our key locations as well as in the strategic families of business. This staffing is supporting our growth strategies and incorporates the omnichannel activities that we now ask our store associates to perform. This investment is resulting in improved customer service scores, and we expect higher sales, albeit on a lag basis.”
The retailer will continue to invest in its digital growth as well as its Bluemercury and Backstage initiatives. Despite is digital success Macy’s has struggled mightily in 2016 as sales have slumped alongside decreased mall traffic. The iconic retailer is looking to springboard into 2017 with a strong holiday season. Macy’s is betting on its ability to leverage its assortments, marketing strategies and momentum on positive trends to drive holiday sales.
“We have a lot of distinctive product and newness in our stores for holiday and we feel great that our customer proposition is compelling,” noted Hoguet. “This includes our new Brookstone shops, our investment in the tech watch business with brand such as Apple and Michael Kors, and our new Holiday Arcade, full of wonderful gift ideas.
“We love this time of year. Macy's is the destination for great holiday gift-giving, and we are uniquely equipped to deliver the complete experience: great product; best-in-class omnichannel capability; and the store animation and holiday traditions that are so cherished by customers across the country.”
Since the great recession and the widespread acceptance of omnichannel retailing shopper behavior and spending patterns have radically changed. Consumers are an essential driver of the U.S. economy and their behavior is driven by a variety of factors, including income, access to credit, and expectations for future economic conditions. Terry J. Lundgren, chairman and CEO of Macy’s Inc. will join William Dudley, CEO of Federal Reserve Bank of New York at the NRF Big Show 2017 for a keynote session on Tuesday, January 17 at 8:45 am. Attend Evolving Consumer Behavior: A View from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to learn how consumer behavior has changed over the last 10 years, and where it’s headed.