As from Wednesday, Kohl will officially be hosting Amazon kiosks in 10 of their stores spread across the Los Angeles and Chicago markets. According to Michelle Gass, Kohl’s chief merchandising and customer officer, talks have been underway from spring that have led to the current partnership between Amazon and Kohl. This move will see the stores sell Amazon smart home products and accept returns from unsatisfied customers.
In a period where retail stores are facing a crisis with most of them opting to close down, Kohls seems to be handling the crisis quite well. Though its stock value has depreciated by 12% from the beginning of the year, it seems to be outperforming others like Macy’s who have seen a close to 44% di in their stock within the same time frame.
The move by Kohl to partner with Amazon is a clear indication of their continued efforts to stay afloat by driving more consumer traffic into their stores. Other examples of such efforts include their partnership with Under Armour; a sports apparel company; that saw Kohl stocking their merchandise and reaping the benefits. This is all part of the retail chain of stores to cut down on excess inventory, manage their space and remain profitable while maintaining a competitive edge over its peers.
For its efforts to be as effective as the management hopes they will be, Kohl desperately needs to work on their brand image. Customers tend to identify and remain loyal to a brand. If your brand is not easily relatable then no amount of cost-cutting and inventory management will keep you in business for much longer.
Kohl is rumored to have an additional 72 stores joining in on the Amazon partnership. Its management is, however, remaining tight-lipped about the exact details of the launch. We, therefore, have no way of knowing whether this will take place before the holidays or not.