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How do the apparel retailers measure up when it comes to e-commerce?
The Men’s Wearhouse formally declined a buyout offer from JoS A. Bank last month, and today JoS A. Bank said it was withdrawing its offer. However, it still left open the possibility of a future deal.
"We strongly believe that a transaction would be in the best interest of both companies, our respective shareholders, and the industry," JoS A. Bank said in a statement. "Should the Men's Wearhouse Board change its stance, we would immediately consider whether a new proposal to acquire Men's Wearhouse is warranted."
Given the possibility of a merger, Internet Retailer decided to take a look at how each of these store-based retailers is faring in selling men’s suits and other apparel.
JoS A. Bank Clothiers Inc. is half the size of The Men’s Wearhouse Inc. in terms of total sales. But Top500Guide.com data shows that it leads Men’s Wearhouse in a number of online metrics, suggesting JoS A. Bank is doing a better job in taking advantage of the shift to online shopping and away from physical stores.
First, JoS A. Bank’s online sales are more than double those of Men’s Wearhouse, and e-commerce represents a lot more of its total revenue. JoS A. Bank brought in $109.0 million in online sales in 2012, about 10.4% of its total sales of $1.05 billion. Men’s Wearhouse, on the other hand, sold an Internet Retailer-estimated $51.1 million online in 2012, only 2.1% of its total sales, which were $2.49 billion.
JoS A. Bank also leads in many of the key operating metrics that retailers use to measure their e-commerce businesses—monthly unique visitors, conversion rate and average ticket. JoS A. Bank brings in nearly 7% more site visitors each month than The Men’s Wearhouse, its conversion rate is 25% higher, and its average order value is 37% higher, Top500Guide.com data show.
Moreover, JoS A. Bank has an edge over its larger competitor in terms of site performance. JoSBank.com loads in 1.72 seconds, while TheMensWearhouse.com takes 2.13 seconds. Site performance monitor and Internet Retailer data partner Compuware Inc. rates the consistency of JoSBank.com as excellent, while TheMensWearhouse.com gets a rating of Fair.
Despite their differences, the two merchants appeal to a very similar demographic of online shopper, though The Men’s Wearhouse’s customer skews slightly younger and less affluent, Top500Guide.com shows.
JoS A. Bank gets 11% of its online orders from customers aged 24 or less, for example, while The Men’s Wearhouse gets 14%. About 20% of JoS A. Bank’s online customers make $30,000 per year or less, while 23% of The Men’s Wearhouse’s customers fit into that income bracket. Both retailers appeal predominantly to men.
Published reports suggest The Men’s Wearhouse is reconsidering JoS A. Bank’s $2.3 billion buyout offer because of pressure from shareholders, though Internet Retailer could not confirm these reports. The Men’s Wearhouse did not respond to a request for comment.