Basketball retailer Spalding’s online sales increased 200% in 2019 compared with 2018. The retailer credits the increase to its new ecommerce platform with Salesforce’s Commerce Cloud and other products from the vendor.

Basketball and sporting goods retailer Spalding wanted an ecommerce platform that would connect every area of its business—from ecommerce to operations and customer service to marketing and consumer engagement.

“We needed something comprehensive that would talk to each other,” says Matt Day, digital marketing and ecommerce manager at Spalding. “We needed a company that would give us the best customer experience. That would give us the biggest impact of our brand.” The retailer declined to reveal which ecommerce platform it was on initially.

Spalding first integrated Salesforce’s Sales Cloud and Service Cloud in 2017, as well as Community Cloud for its business-to-business channel. And once the retailer ramped up its direct-to-consumer business in late 2018, it added the Commerce Cloud and Marketing Cloud. Additionally, right before Black Friday 2018, it added a mobile-first ecommerce platform. A mobile-first design approach is when a retailer starts by designing for a smartphone and then scales up to a desktop design.

“Out of all my professional experiences, the No. 1 thing I learned is not to replatform or launch something during the holidays,” Day says. “We went all against that.”

It also added a customization feature built on Commerce Cloud to during that same time period before Black Friday. Shoppers can customize their own basketball with a player name, team logo, player number or any other message. Consumers can use the customization feature on both its desktop and mobile site.


“We had some cool growth on the customization part,” Day says. “And we saw our ecommerce really take off from all the platforms coming together. It gave us a successful foundation for a record-breaking 2019.”

Spalding’s online sales increased 200% in 2019, compared with 2018. And in 2018, the retailer’s web sales grew 270% compared with 2017. Plus, it posted 300% year-over-year growth in online sales for the holidays in 2019 from Nov. 1 to mid-December, Day says, even with six fewer shopping days. The retailer declined to reveal specific sales information.

Mobile really came into play during the holidays for Spalding, thanks to the retailer’s earlier mobile-first design approach, Day says. 70% of all holiday sales stemmed from mobile. Loyal Spalding fans were especially mobile oriented, as 68% of those mobile purchases were from Spalding MVP members, the retailer’s loyalty program.

“With the [mobile-first design], we immediately saw a lift in conversion and a little bit of decrease on time on site coupled with conversion,” Day says. “People were able to find what they needed faster, rather than spending their time searching for products. We’re doing our job conveying the info they need.”

In the coming year, the retailer also wants to better engage consumers across various channels, such as on social media. “How can we help them no matter where they are?” Day says. “How can we use our Salesforce platform and all the data we have to better service them?”


That’s something Day plans to conquer in 2020. To do this, Spalding needs to stay on top of ever-changing ecommerce technology, he says.

Read more about Salesforce’s Commerce Cloud, other ecommerce platforms and more retailer case studies in the just-released 2020 Ecommerce Platforms Report.