Home Depot and Walmart top L2’s Digital IQ Index in big box retail

Digital expertise retail ranking

Digital expertise retail ranking

Home Depot and Walmart have been ranked first and second respectively in L2’s Digital IQ Index: Big Box 2014, which analyses and benchmarks the digital competence of 64 big box brands in the US market.

The retailers’ early investments in digital are paying off, according to L2; which aims to provide a robust tool to diagnose digital strengths and weaknesses, helping managers achieve greater return on incremental investments.

Until recently, most big box retailers have treated digital as a non-strategic priority, said L2. As Amazon encroaches on the industry, big box retailers are leveraging their store footprint to fight back. Ironically, the biggest cost centre for big box retail (ie property) could be their salvation, researchers claim. By shipping online orders to local stores, retailers can benefit from lower freight costs, commercial shipping fees and faster delivery.

L2’s Digital IQ Index: Big Box 2014 also found 61% of brands offer click-and-collect but only a third go the extra step to offer sophisticated fulfillment, such as ship-from-store or same-day delivery.

Over 70% of big box retailers let customers buy items online and return them in store but, while 97% of big box retailers have mobile optimised sites, only 73% of those are m-commerce enabled.

Further, although 69% of big box brands have apps only 59% are e-commerce enabled.

Macy’s, Best Buy, Walmart and Walgreens all ranked within the top 10, and offer the greatest investment opportunity from a valuation standpoint, especially as the heart of the heart of holiday season nears, L2 said.