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Stores attract the most-loyal customers of any channel, omni-channel operator tells RECon

May 21, 2019

For Foxtrot Delivery Market, an omni-channel delivery concept born online, stores are the best way to attract new customers.

The retailer launched as an e-commerce operation that curates a corner-market-style mix of food-and-beverage items such as wine, ice cream and snacks, and delivers the purchases in less than an hour through a custom app. After a year, CEO Mike LaVitola and the management team decided it was time to open a physical site, he told attendees at RECon.

Foxtrot Delivery Market opened its first store in Chicago. The chain currently operates six in that market and says it will open a new one in June 2019  in Dallas, with plans for 3 total locations in Dallas by the end of the year. About half its e-commerce customers live within a mile or two of one of the stores. 

The stores are the company’s main driver of new customer growth. “You can run ads online to acquire customers, but a big, beautiful store in a great neighborhood is better,” said LaVitola. Physically acquired customers have five times the lifespan of the digitally acquired ones, he observed. Half the retailer’s sales are currently done in person and half online, he said. “The ideal customer visits multiple times a day, with everything transacted through the app. This gives us a holistic view of the customer and allows us to serve them better.”

As the concept grows, some developers tend to have a negative reaction to a corner store at first, he said. “But when they see our existing locations and website, they see that having a Foxtrot on the corner can add traffic and frequency.”

By Brannon Boswell

Executive Editor, Commerce + Communities Today

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