American Eagle Outfitters plans to focus on improving its website performance and online personalization, and it will close an unspecified number of stores.

Online sales grew by nearly 20% in 2016 for American Eagle Outfitters Inc. in fiscal 2016.

That growth helped push online’s share of total sales to 22% in fiscal 2016 compared with 19% in fiscal 2015, a spokesman for the apparel retail chain tells Internet Retailer. Online sales for the fiscal year ended Jan. 28 were $794.2 million, up 18.7% from $669.2 million in the year-ago period.

In the fiscal fourth quarter, online sales of $296.3 million accounted for 27% of sales up 16.5% from $254.3 million last year when they accounted for 23%, according to American Eagle, No. 63 in the Internet Retailer 2016 Top 500 Guide.

The retailer plans to close some stores to improve the overall business, but Madore and others didn’t specify how many stores will close or when.

“We are seeking opportunities to further consolidate markets where it makes sense,” Madore said. “Additionally, we are taking a deep dive, market by market, to ensure that we have [the] best brand presence and that we are maximizing our commercial opportunity across stores and digital. We have great analytics and data available to us to show digital penetration versus brick-and-mortar, and based on our learnings of closing stores and historical recapture rates, we will more aggressively look to close stores going forward.” American Eagle operates 1,050 stores worldwide.


For the fiscal fourth quarter ended Jan. 28, American Eagle also reported:

  • Net revenue of $1.097 billion, down 0.8% from $1.106 billion in fiscal Q4 2015.
  • Net income of $54.6 million, down 33.2% from $81.7 million.

For fiscal 2016, American Eagle reported:

  • Net revenue of $3.610 billion, up 2.5% from $3.522 billion in fiscal 2015.
  • Net income of $212.4 million, down 2.6% from $218.1 million.