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Here’s a Crucial Way for Traditional Retailers to Compete With E-Commerce

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Online sales are growing rapidly.

A large percentage of pet product sales growth is online, and 40 percent of pet owners now buy pet products online, up from 37 percent a year ago, according to Packaged Facts’ 2017 National Pet Owner Survey. 

But brick-and-mortar retailers are still finding ways to compete.

Traditional retailers and manufacturers “are scrambling to regroup to avoid losing ground,” said David Sprinkle, research director for Packaged Facts.

“Retailers are adapting to compete with the internet’s — specifically Amazon’s — ballooning strength in pet product sales,” he said. “Brand manufacturers are adapting because their entrenched lock on shelf space is increasingly irrelevant for shelf-stable online purchasable products such as dry and canned pet food or cat litter.”

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Packaged Facts states that for specialty pet retailers — superstores such as PetSmart and Petco are mentioned specifically — one way to compete is by “capitalizing on their established relationships with customers who know what to expect from the in-store experience and from the services offered there.”

A “critical differentiator” for such stores is the area of non-medical pet services such as grooming, boarding and training.

“Looking at trends more broadly, brick-and-mortar retailers have decided that this is the best way to compete with the low costs and convenience of e-commerce – by offering services and experiences you really only can get in-person,” Sprinkle said.

The company details its findings in the new report “U.S. Pet Market Outlook, 2017-2018.”

Read more at Packaged Facts

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