Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. is investing $2.9 billion in China’s largest “hyper-market” or superstore company, Sun Art Retail Group, in a move there against Walmart and its partnership with Alibaba rival JD.com. This is yet another chapter in the growing “clicks-to-bricks” trend, including Amazon’s Whole Foods acquisition.
Right on the heels of Walmart’s September announcement of an in-home grocery delivery service being tested in New York City, Amazon has come out with its own offering allowing drivers to enter homes and drop off items under the watchful eye of a new Amazon smart connected camera – all tied to Alexa.
While things look dire in physical retail, investments in omnichannel are paying off for some traditional retailers. There are similarities in the playbook across a diverse group of companies, including aligning physical stores with the ecommerce channel, investing in private brands, and aggressively expanding product assortment. See how some of the leaders are staying ahead of the curve.