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Online Holiday Sales Grow Over 45% in 2020, Ulta Loyalty Members Drive 95% of Sales and Nike’s Apps Played Crucial Role in Driving Engagement, 2020 Digital Sales Growth

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Online Holiday Sales Grow Over 45% in 2020

For retailers, the stakes were high this holiday season as they faced unprecedented ecommerce demand from consumers who were anxious about visiting stores for their gift buying due to COVID-19. However, expectations largely were met and the November-December period further extended massive gains made in digital retail throughout 2020. U.S. shoppers spent $201.32 billion online during the season, up 45.2% from $138.65 billion in 2019, Digital Commerce 360 estimates. That’s more than triple the year-over-year growth rate during the holidays for the year prior, when web sales grew at a sluggish 13.6%.

What stood out to us? Nothing to see here.


Ulta Loyalty Members Drive 95% of Sales

While Ulta Beauty faced operational challenges in 2020, there was one thing that stuck out to the retailer: the loyalty of its Ultimate Rewards members. The cosmetics retailer now has close to 32 million members in its free rewards program, and those members make up more than 95% of its sales, both online and in store. With the 32 million members, 45% of that 95% is made up of its diamond and platinum members, which are consumers that shop the most frequently and spend the most with Ulta. Platinum members spend at least $500 with Ulta per year and Diamond members spend at least $1,200. “Loyalty is at the heart of our work,” said Kelly Mahoney, vice president, customer marketing at Ulta during a session at the National Retail Federation’s 2021 digital conference. “Our members are engaged with our brand and love us back with their loyal shopping year after year,” she said.

What stood out to us? Rumor has it that Gene Simmons is approaching Diamond status.

Nike Store

Nike’s Apps Played Crucial Role in Driving Engagement, 2020 Digital Sales Growth

Nike's mobile apps have helped fuel sales growth during the pandemic as part of the sportswear giant's effort to boost direct-to-consumer sales. Those apps urge people to participate in a range of activities with a gamification strategy designed to maintain loyalty, reinforce brand messaging and drive sales. On the strength of its websites and mobile apps, the company's digital revenue jumped 84% in the quarter ended November 30, according to its earnings report last month. Nike reported a 9% gain in total revenue to $11.2 billion. Digital sales will make up about half of total revenue in the near future, the company forecasts. "Digital is the 'new normal' in consumer behavior, and we believe the trends that we're seeing are here to stay," John Donahoe, president and CEO of Nike, said in a December earnings call. "Consumers want to get what they want, when they want it, how they want it."

What stood out to us? Just do it digitally.

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