Search Twitter Facebook Digital HFBusiness Magazine Pinterest Google

Get the latest industry scoop


Daily News

From Home Furnishing Business

Big Lots Will Appeal to Customers with Even More Reasons to Shop

In a shift in their long-term strategy, Big Lots, Inc. is promising more bargains and treasures for shoppers. CEO Bruce Thorn, on a call with stock analysts, said shoppers are spending less, so Big Lots needs to give them more reasons to come to the store.

The Columbus-based retailer said it plans to bring “more excitement to the store” by increasing the amount of surprising closeout products it gets to its shelves — the “treasure hunt” appeal of shopping its stores.

“Our customer is being pinched. In particular low-income customers who we serve have felt the most pain,” Thorn said. Big Lots hopes that by increasing the number of bargains and treasures — current items like Mattel toys, comforter sets and Black & Decker tools — it can earn those sales back from cash-strapped shoppers.

Net sales fell 9.8% to $1.20 billion in the third quarter, while comparable store sales dropped 11.7% The company also reported a loss of $103 million, or $3.56 a share, in the quarter.

The number of bargains and treasures in stores is up 90% versus third quarter 2021. Those items are taking more prominent space in stores as well, with 90% of endcap displays in stores showing them off compared with 40% of endcaps in July.

The endcaps are part of a bigger marketing push to tout Big Lots’ deals. The company also last month brought in a new chief marketing officer.

“We need to do a better job at communicating unmistakable value,” Thorn said. “We don’t want our customers to wonder if they’re getting a better deal than they would somewhere else.”

Thorn also said Big Lots continues to see opportunity to gain trade-down business, with its private-owned brands across several categories as being key to that strategy. Those brands accounted for 30% of Big Lots sales in the quarter, up from the mid-20s in third quarter 2021.

Other initiatives include eliminating unproductive and redundant products. It also continues to see promise with rural and small-town stores which face less competition and have lower costs to operate and thus are more profitable.  

Big Lots expects its fourth-quarter comparable store sales to be down in the low double-digit range.

Comments are closed.
HFB Designer Weekly
HFB Designer Weekly
HFB Pinterest