Welcome to The Week in Direct-to-Consumer Marketing, a weekly roundup for marketers from Quad Insights that sums up the latest news in the DTC space.
U.S. ecommerce sales to top $1.1 trillion this year
After exceeding the monumental $1 trillion mark for the first time in 2022, retail ecommerce sales in the U.S. are predicted to rise even further this year, surging to at least $1.14 trillion in what would amount to a 10% year-over-year increase, per the 2023 U.S. Online Retail Report published this week by FTI Consulting. (Click here to check out the full report.) This uptick is anchored by “increased purchases across several product categories, including food, pet supplies, baby products, clothing and accessories” in what will likely prove to be a boon for many direct-to-consumer brands rooted in those industries, Retail Bum reports, with that momentum also getting a boost from 2022 holiday spending, which included a record $211 billion in online purchases, according to data from Adobe.
Brands continue to overhaul their DTC strategies
The past few years — underscored by the Covid-19 pandemic — marked a transformational era for direct-to-consumer marketing, in which DTC-native brands as well as traditionally retail-centric companies rethought and recalibrated their relationships with consumers. Some of the country’s largest brands, such as Nike, retreated from store shelves as they sought to recenter their direct-sales capabilities. However, “as the landscape continues to shift, brands are embracing wholesale opportunities to connect with a wider range of consumers and meet them where they prefer to shop,” according to new analysis from Pymnts, which reckons that the embrace of (or return to) wholesale by companies including athletic apparel titan Lululemon to lingerie maker Adore Me are signaling DTC’s next era: one in which companies are figuring out a “best of both worlds” strategy.
The Laundress relaunches with ‘bio-based’ formulations
DTC laundry-care brand The Laundress took to social media on Wednesday, July 12th to announce a new product line based on a “new formula made with bio-based ingredients,” Retail Dive’s Dani James reports. The move comes several months after voluntary product recalls due to bacteria contamination. “We are humbled and grateful for your support as we work to ensure our new fabric care formulas meet the highest safety and quality standards, in the same fresh scents you know and love,” The Laundress said in an Instagram post, with CEO Clemens Herrmann saying in an additional statement that the company has retooled its testing and safety protocols to exceed industry standards. “Our team worked around the clock to make this relaunch a reality,” he said.
DTC business moves this week:
Foundry has acquired DTC grooming brand Blu Atlas
Online business accelerator Foundry has acquired Blu Atlas, a DTC men’s skincare, haircare and fragrance brand, Beauty Packaging reported Thursday. The deal for an undisclosed amount marks Foundry’s third acquisition of a men’s personal care company, with its portfolio already including premium razor brand Supply and men’s cosmetics label Stryx. “Blu Atlas has successfully cracked the code by offering high-quality products crafted from natural ingredients, accompanied by great fragrances and appealing packaging,” Foundry’s Co-founder and CFO Matt Rhodes said in a press release. “This acquisition perfectly aligns with our mission of enriching people’s lives.”
Thank you for reading this week’s edition of The Week in Direct-to-Consumer Marketing. We’ll be back next Friday with more news on all things DTC.