26 Aug 2020
Posted in Business Fundamentals
US retailers’ sentiments recover due to stellar digital gains, says GlobalData
Sentiments rise seen for Walmart, The Home Depot, Target and Kohl’s on the back of digital sales boom, says GlobalData, a leading data, and analytics company.
Walmart shrugged off any COVID-19 concerns as the retailing giant’s US comparable sales growth drove a sentimental upswing of over 23%. Meanwhile, The Home Depot’s sentiments grew by over 35% due to a double-digit profit surge; Target Corp reported phenomenal quarterly earnings and saw sentiments grow by around 17% for Q2 2020; and Kohl’s Corp also witnessed a sentimental rebound as steady cash flow and digital performance helped to steady the ship.
Rinaldo Pereira, Senior Analyst at GlobalData, says: “Walmart’s digital growth, curbside pickups, food and merchandising sales boosted sentiments during the quarter. While Home Depot experienced a rise in home improvement spending as sales per square foot witnessed double-digit growth rates. The solid performances weighed heavily on sentiments for both companies, however, things would have been even better if Walmart and The Home Depot had provided an update to their respective financial outlooks, which they did not due to an uncertain business environment.
“Walmart’s e-commerce investments have paid off as customers continued online shopping, despite the opening up of the US economy. The discount retailer expects to further capitalize on gains by introducing a membership service, but is concerned about retaining new shoppers when the situation normalizes.”
Target’s electronics and home segments were revenue and sentiment catalysts during the quarter. Profits surged as the company’s digital sales tripled compared to Q2 2019, driven by Shipt, Target’s online delivery platform.
Pereira continued: “Target’s digital sales contributed to around 55% of the company’s comp sales in comparison to Walmart’s 66%, suggesting that Target is attracting more customers to its stores in contrast to its competitor.”
Kohl’s digital performance boosted sentiments, yet the growth was lesser than that of the competitors due to revenue and profit slumps. The company expects the impact of COVID-19 to remain as it continues to face rising costs due to the online shift.
Pereira concludes: “As shopping trends continue to pivot towards digital sales, it will be surprising if retailers can continue to keep up margins despite the uncertainty around a second wave of COVID-19.”