Blunt Report On How Mid-Market Retailers Can (or Cannot) Grow in the Age of Amazon

The Hard Truth: Mid-Market Retailers Can’t Beat Amazon

Radial’s findings explore how mid-market brands and retailers must balance two pain points: an infrastructure that’s capable of delighting customers and adaptable enough to handle surges of peak season, combined with the right systems and initiatives in place to lift the entire value chain and generate a profit. The paper analyzes the challenges of the mid-market, and presents the viable opportunities that can grow out of them.

For example, Radial points to Shoe Carnival, one of the nation’s largest family footwear retailers, who was faced with the need to grow and profit in an eCommerce environment. Since working with Radial for all post-click capabilities, Shoe Carnival has leveraged its strong store network and turned its stores into mini-distribution centers, making them a primary fulfillment source for eCommerce business growth. As a result, Shoe Carnival’s eCommerce orders skyrocketed 62 percent year-over-year since 2015, plus the retailer experienced a 61 percent increase in order volume year-over-year, and a 49 percent lift in sales revenue.

Through its partnership with Radial, Shoe Carnival’s network of stores has become an increasingly valuable eCommerce asset, leading to expanded product assortment, increased availability across channels, faster shipping, and an overall improved customer experience.

The Silver Lining: Mid-Market Retailers Can Make a Profit

The paper concludes with some innovative strategies mid-market businesses are implementing for a competitive advantage and to differentiate in a way that results in return customers. While retailers shouldn’t try to beat Amazon at its own game, there are ways to profitably survive, such as:

  • Offer same-day buy online, pick-up in store: This is one of the few ways to beat Amazon Prime’s two-day guarantee.
  • Match pricing: It’s now necessary for retailers to match prices, plus it’s likely to incentivize repeat visits.
  • Partner with other companies: With the right partners, retailers can deliver a better synchronized customer experience at scale, while generating increases in the bottom line.

For Radial’s in-depth analysis, download “Beyond Survival: Growing in the Age of Amazon – A Manifesto for Mid-Market Brands and Retailers.”