Online marketplace Jet.com says it was much better prepared entering its second holiday shopping season.
“We really tried to focus on categories that we know resonate and are high interest with our target consumers in areas like electronics, toys, home goods and apparel,” chief customer officer Liza Landsman tells Internet Retailer. “We really did not try to take an approach of being all things to all people. We wanted to have great value in those categories that mattered most.”
Just before the holidays, Jet was acquired by retail giant Wal-Mart Stores Inc., No. 4 in the Internet Retailer 2016 Top 500 Guide. The companies maintained separate holiday strategies, given that those were in place long before the $3.3 billion cash acquisition was finalized in September, but Landsman says Jet is taking advantage of Wal-Mart’s supply chain knowledge.
“Learning some lessons from our colleagues at Wal-Mart on the timing and speed of replenishment has allowed us to maintain incredible in-stock rates on the products we ship ourselves,” she says.
Outside of the holiday season, Jet.com typically ships about 30% of its orders from its own warehouses, with the remaining 70% handled by retailers and brands that sell through its marketplace. During the holiday season, volume shipped from its warehouses drops to the 20-25% range, Landsman says.
“We just shift into categories that are more likely to be things that are coming from our retailer and brand partners,” she says. “We do stock some electronics, but mostly our TVs are coming from third parties. We tend to stock replenishables in apparel so [we have] more everyday kind of apparel. Our third-party partners are going to be suppliers of designer apparel.”
Compared with the 2015 holiday season (Jet.com’s first), Landsman says shoppers are buying more goods while in Jet.com’s mobile app, which is available for iOS and Android devices. Orders placed through its app now account for 6.1% of orders, compared with 4.2% during the previous holiday shopping season.