J.C. Penney Gets ‘Maniacal’ About Digital Commerce
J.C. Penney has seen the future and it’s digital. The department
store chain is looking to grow its online business by $1 billion within
five years, according to a Dow Jones Newswire report, as it "restructures
itself into a digital marketplace."
As the same article points out, Penney
isn’t about to close its stores, but it will put more emphasis on using kiosks,
mobile device apps and other tactics to meld the physical and virtual worlds.
Currently, online sales represent about 10 percent of the chain’s total.
"We see JCP.com now as our flagship experience, our largest store," Mike
Boylson, chief marketing officer at J.C. Penney told an audience at Goldman
Sachs’ e-commerce conference. "This is the growth engine in the company
and it plays a key role in our merchandise initiatives."
vice president and chief information officer Thomas Nealon described the company’s
online emphasis as being "on the verge of maniacal."
Mr. Nealon predicted
a huge jump in mobile commerce in the years to come. He described estimates
that the U.S. market will grow from a current annual rate of between $2.5 billion
and $5 billion to as much as $15 billion a year over the next five years as
Andrew Lipsman, a senior analyst with ComScore, told the News
Quench website, "The
entire retail industry, in one way or another, is becoming driven by digital,
and the days of just going to the store and shopping are really declining."
Discussion Questions: Is the future of J.C. Penney and other department stores
for that matter online? What traditional retailers do you think are doing the
best job of melding their physical store and digital operations?
- J.C. Penney Sees Digital Imperative To Future – Dow Jones Newswires/The
Wall Street Journal
- Traditional retailers expanding into online sales – News Quench