November 12, 2012, 4:37 PM

Kohl’s Q3 web sales shoot up by 50%

E-commerce sales account for 6.6% of total sales in the third quarter.

Lead Photo

Q3 web sales at Kohl's shot up to $295 million.

Kohl’s Corp. is paying more attention to e-commerce and it’s paying off in sales growth, especially in the just-completed third quarter

For the third quarter ended Oct. 27, Kohl’s, No. 28 in the 2012 Internet Retailer Top 500 guide, reported:

  • Online sales of $295 million, up by 50% from about $197 million in Q3 2011.
  • Total sales were $4.49 billion, an increase of 2.7% from about $4.37 billion in the prior year.
  • Comparable-store sales increased 1.1%.
  • Net income was $215 million, down by 1.9% from $211 million in the same quarter a year ago.

Web sales accounted for 6.6% of total sales compared with 4.5% in the third quarter of 2011.

E-commerce growth was fueled by an improved conversion rate and higher web traffic, Wesley McDonald, chief financial officer, told analysts on the company’s earnings call last week. “We’ve invested a lot of money in digital marketing this year to drive traffic to the site,” he said. “We just installed guided navigation recently, and we expect that to be a benefit for the holiday season. And we’ve also increased the number of SKUs we have available online.”

McDonald did not disclose the e-commerce investment figure or the number of SKUs added online.

Kohl’s also is testing shipping online orders from stores on a very limited basis, McDonald said. The service could be in place for the 2013 holiday season, he said.

For the first nine months:

  • Web sales were $782 million, up by 41% from $555 million in the first nine months of 2011.
  • Total sales were $12.93 billion, an increase of 1.2% from $12.78 billion.
  • Comparable-store sales decreased 0.5%.
  • Net income was $609 million, a 14.3% decline from $711 million a year ago.

Web sales accounted for 6.0% of total sales compared with 4.3% in the first nine months of 2011.

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