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How multichannel helped JD Sports to stand out from the crowd

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It’s hard not to contrast the fate of Jaeger, which has gone into administration, with that of JD Sports, which has posted profits growth of more than 190% over the last three years. Granted, JD Sports has benefited from the trend for athleisure in recent years, while it’s some time since Audrey Hepburn last wore Jaeger – though the Duchess of Cambridge has been spotted wearing its clothes lately. But what’s striking in today’s figures from JD Sports is just how much emphasis the retailer puts on multichannel as a reason for its success. Multichannel, it says, makes the point of difference that is important to both its consumers and its suppliers, while at the same time making its product ranges more attractive and desirable. That’s significant since JD Sports sells other people’s brands – and it succeeds when it makes those brands look better than its rivals do.

JD’s success is just one of the stories of how multichannel retail has boosted sales success that we have in today’s newsletter. We also report on how John Lewis adapted to Black Friday, and we single out 12 successful approaches to brand engagement.

Jaeger’s failure, by contrast, is hardly a surprise. It’s to be expected as retail sales slow both online and offline, according to BRC-KPMG figures out today. In today’s competitive retail environment, a time of added uncertainty thanks to Brexit, it’s hard for retailers to stand out. But, as JD Sports shows, a clear multichannel strategy is as much a part of standing out as the products that those retailers sell.

In today’s newsletter we also have guest analysis from Zalando’s Andreas Antrup, who considers the demands of the ‘liquid consumer’, while today’s guest comment comes from Tim Cameron-Kitchen of Exposure Ninja, who argues that chatbots do not mean the end of apps.


Upcoming InternetRetailing webinars are from Greenlight Commerce, on how BHS relaunched online in just seven weeks, to be held at 2pm on May 4, and from inRiver on how retailers can shape their product marketing for the micromoment, to be held at 2pm on May 8.

Find out more about them and register for free on the InternetRetailing webinar page. You can also catch up with past webinars on the page: recent sessions have come from IBM Watson on using AI to improve the customer experience, and from SmartFocus and The Entertainer on using social to reach digital customers.

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