ECommerce Coronavirus Success Stories: 11 Best Performing Sites During COVID-19 Crisis

Coronavirus boosts eCommerce revenues, increasing digitalized brands’ resilience
As the global economy contracts under the weight of the crisis, eCommerce revenues show resilience amid Coronavirus pandemic

As the global economy contracts under the weight of the crisis, eCommerce revenues show resilience amid Coronavirus pandemic

As consumers look to shop more online due to social distancing and self-isolation, there have been increases in traffic and sales for the best performing eCommerce sites.

These high-performing companies have maneuvered the challenges of the COVID-19 crisis to grow their eCommerce revenue.

The top examples of eCommerce sites that have performed well during the COVID-19 crisis paint a picture of the current eCommerce Coronavirus market.

These cases showcase some exemplary steps that can serve as guidance for other businesses facing the Coronavirus eCommerce impact and coping with new challenges or looking to expand.

From implementing improved web design to creative, digital business strategies, these eCommerce sites have been able to succeed.

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The best performing eCommerce sites are:

1. eCommerce Coronavirus Impact Stimulates Ikea’s Online Sales

Ikea’s online sales have reached double what they were a year ago during the COVID-19 crisis.

In some countries, including Denmark, the eCommerce sales are close to 10 times the volume they had before the pandemic.

Interestingly, Ikea just launched an advanced virtual showroom with mobile and deep learning. The timing turned out well since this project was initiated long before the current crisis. The new tool allows people to test-run what their homes may look like with various furniture options.

2. eCommerce Allows Papa Johns To Expand And Run Smooth Operations During COVID-19

It’s no surprise that pizza deliveries have gone up while people are home more and Papa Johns is appearing to be the big winner, beating out Dominos and others.

Although they moved to no contact delivery, their customers not only felt safe about their food being delivered at home but the demand for their products also increased.

In fact, the company’s North America same-store sales rose by 27% in April.

They recently announced the addition of 20,000 new workers to meet the order volume.

The website operates a smooth ordering process and features a ‘Papa Track’ tool that allows users to keep tabs on their orders.

3. Nike Promotes Ecommerce Offering During COVID-19 By Sharing Free Content To Engage Consumers

Nike took action by waiving online fees for NTC Premium, their subscription program behind services including the Nike+ app, and providing free access to fitness classes and other resources.

The growth in membership is a positive association for the brand, encourages activewear purchases for at-home workouts and gets users hooked on the platform before it becomes paid again.

By making its premium content free, Nike also manages to showcase its content and increase the number of new potential customers who can later turn into long-term paying subscribers.

Nike storefront – the brand sees growth in digital sales during COVID-19 crisi
Nike’s eCommerce strategy keeps the brand’s revenue in the green zone as the pandemic unfolds

4. William Sonoma’s Tech And Operational Investment Pays Off In Digital Sales

Extended periods of time at home has led to people making bread like never before and exploring new recipes that cause them to use their kitchens more than usual.

For example, Amazon’s best-selling bread maker model has been sold out after a producer for the Ellen DeGeneres’ producer, Andy Lassner, tweeted about the product.

As a leading retailer for kitchen tools and appliances, William Sonoma has had solid sales recently and their stock performance has been up.

The company has been dedicated to enhancing the consumer experience through operational improvement and tech innovation, which has helped their eCommerce performance.

They have already experienced a large portion of digital sales in 2019 and they expect strong revenues online due to the current crisis.

5. Coronavirus Ecommerce Impact Leads To Vitamin World’s Web Traffic Spike With Increased Consumer Demand

Growth in the demand for health and wellness items has brought an increase in the consumption of vitamins. Vitamin sales are up 93% year on year according to Nielsen research.

Vitamin retailers as a whole are experiencing growth in consumers, and Vitamin World specifically has had a significant uptick in web traffic, with double the website visitors in March 2020 as compared to October 2019.

6. Gaming Platform Steam Becomes One Of The Best Performing Ecommerce Sites Thanks To Fast Growing User Base

More time at home means more time spent gaming for consumers who partake in PC games. Steam is a platform that sells games and enables developers to make money from their games.

The difference in users has been notable since social distancing and self-isolation have been introduced.

The peak in online active users in April 2019 was 17,125,670 and this April it has already shot up to a new peak of 24,535,923.

7. ECommerce COVID-19 Boost Helps Adam & Eve Increase Online Sales Revenue

There has been a lot of attention to the increase in popularity of PornHub and adult product provider Adam & Eve has followed the same trend.

According to Forbes, the company’s sales have spiked over 30% compared to this time last year. With many retailers who sell their products closed, sales have been more concentrated to digital platforms and particularly Adam & Eve’s web shop.

8. Chewy’s Digital Sales Benefit From Growing Number Of Home Shoppers And Pet Adopters

According to analysts, online pet supply retailer, Chewy is benefiting as customers do their shopping from home. Similar to online grocery shopping, this is a purchase people make regularly, but they have switched online due to the circumstances.

The crisis has not only made some people panic about toilet paper and hand sanitizers but they also stock up pet food to make sure their pets are fed during the pandemic.

CivicScience has recently run a survey to find out how pet owners deal with the crisis. The company discovered that 17% of Americans are now ordering more food for their pets online than ever before.

Additionally, there has been an increase in pet adoption which could be seen as an influence on increased demand for pet food and supplies.

9. Credo Employs A Strong Digital Strategy To Keep Sales Strong

Losses can be offset, at least in part, for brands with strong digital strategies. Dawn Dobras, the CEO of clean beauty company Credo, said that while in-store sales had decreased right before its closure, digital sales had increased as more people relied on online shopping.

The brand has adapted to the current situation in their digital strategy, for example by posting a handwashing guide and selling hand soap simultaneously.

10. Lululemon Leverages Tech To Maintain Momentum In Ecommerce Amid Coronavirus Crisis

While supply chain and delivery have been issues for many companies at this time, a decision that has paid off for Lululemon is their investment in RFID (radio-frequency identification) tech.

The tech enables real time knowledge of where every product is, be it in-store or at a distribution facility, to support online sales processes.

The company has also bolstered its digital strategy by hosting virtual pilates, yoga, dance and other classes.

When other apparel brands are experiencing sales declines, Lululemon’s North America eCommerce business has had an accelerated growth rate since the stores shut down on March 16.

The athletic company has reported fourth-quarter net income of $298.0 million up from $218.5 million last year. Its same-store sales also soared 20%, including 41% boost in the direct-to-consumer channel.

11. Drizly Digital Platform Faces Surge In Sales In Already-Growing Market

Drizly, a digital marketplace for alcohol that works with local retailers, has been experiencing dramatic growth in sales.

The week of March 30, Drizly sales were up 461% over their baseline of eight weeks prior. Approximately 40% of recent orders have been from new customers.

This market is experiencing accelerated growth for what was already a promising market. Alcohol eCommerce sales hit about $3 billion in North America in 2019, according to IWSR, and that figure is forecasted to reach $13.4 billion by 2024.

How To Improve Ecommerce Site Performance During Coronavirus Downtime

With shoppers turning to digital channels for their shopping during this health crisis, companies can increase sales and customer retention by using this time to engage online visitors.

The first step is to listen to customers’ needs when establishing or improving a website and digital strategy.

Working with a digital agency can help with building an effective strategy.

Sites that perform well during this period of COVID-19 will see continued success after the crisis.

Some practical steps to building a high performing eCommerce website, including:

  • Simple website design
  • Multichannel shopping experience
  • User reviews
  • “Save to wish list” option
  • Simplified checkout
  • Related items
  • Optimized store search engine
  • Secure features
  • Advanced payment options
  • Personalized user experience
  • Detailed shipping information

These tips offer guidance to companies looking to build their eCommerce functionality and success during this time.

The examples of best performing eCommerce sites illustrate that strong performance is possible with a solid digital strategy and catering towards the new consumer market in the time of this crisis.

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