December 18, 2003, 12:00 AM

Bombay’s December online sales are up 60%, ahead of both last year and plan

An expanded database that grew from 150,00 to more than 450,000 over the year, aggressive e-mail marketing including couponing and a new store on Amazon help build holiday sales.

Kurt Peters

Executive Editor

 

The Bombay Company’s online sales are up and well ahead of plan for the holidays, vice president of e-commerce and marketing Matt Corey tells Internet Retailer. December month-to-date online sales are up about 60% over last December, following year-to-date sales that are up over 100%, Corey says.

Bombay doesn`t break out numbers for online sales, instead reporting them in combination with its catalog and B2B businesses, which were about 9% to 10% of sales that totaled some $500 million last year across the company. However, “Online sales are the biggest piece of that,” says Corey. “Online sales are blowing away catalog sales.”

Corey attributes the holiday lift across all channels to factors including aggressive e-mail marketing. In the past year, Bombay grew its customer e-mail database from about 150,000 to more than 450,000, spurred in part by the offer of a monthly coupon, generally for about 10% off on any purchase of $100 or more. The coupon is e-mailed as part of the newspaper free-standing inserts that Bombay started putting online this year. The FSIs are in only about 20 markets. With e-mail, customers who either don’t receive the newspaper or aren’t in one of the markets the newspapers serve can still get the coupon for shopping online or any other channel, Corey says.

Corey also attributes increased sales online and across Bombay’s other channels to the store it launched on Amazon.com in September, which encompasses Bombay, Bombay Kids, and Bombay Outlet. “It’s expanded our reach and been great acquisition vehicle for us,” says Corey.

 

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