Vitamin Shoppe set to launch a new e-commerce platform

February 25, 2015 01:26 PM

The Vitamin Shoppe Inc. has launched a redesigned web platform in hopes of continuing five straight years of double-digit, year-over-year e-commerce growth. In 2014 that growth was 12%.

The new platform, launched Friday, is aimed at better reaching shoppers on whatever device they’re using and at making the site more user-friendly with an emphasis on multimedia, CEO Tony Truesdale told analysts on the retailer’s Q4 2014 earnings call. In its 10-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the retailer reported it is expecting sales to grow faster online than in bricks-and-mortar retail locations. The Vitamin Shoppe ranks No. 207 in the Internet Retailer 2014 Top 500 Guide.

“Key features include improved speed and performance on mobile, tablet and desktop,” Truesdale said, according to a transcript of the call obtained from Seeking Alpha. “We have new image hosting, allowing for more videos and zooming features, a quicker checkout, new inventory rules and numerous other customer facing enhancements.”

Truesdale also cited the redesigned platform’s focus on personalization as key to continuing online sales growth.

“This is an upgraded, totally new platform that the web site sits on,” he said. “Long term, we’ve positioned the company very, very well and it will probably be less investment going forward in the web platform than we’ve made in the past.”

Truesdale will be retiring June 27. The retailer has not yet named a successor.

While fiscal 2014 marks the Vitamin Shoppe’s fifth straight year of double-digit e-commerce growth, according to its SEC filing, the 12% year-over-year growth for 2014 was lower than it was for 2013 when the company reported 19.4% year-over-year e-commerce growth. Truesdale didn’t give a reason for why online sales growth slowed in 2014.

For the fourth quarter ending Dec. 27, Vitamin Shoppe, which does not break out web sales, reported:

  • Net sales of $290.08 million, up 13.1% from $256.43 million during the same period in fiscal 2013.
  • Gross profit of $94.6 million, up 10.4% from $85.7 million during the same period last year.
  • E-commerce sales growth of 5.6% year-over-year for the quarter, though the retailer did not specify a dollar figure.

For fiscal 2014, Vitamin Shoppe reported:

  • Net sales of $1.213 billion, up 11.6% from $1.087 billion in fiscal 2013.
  • Gross profit of $404.26 million, up 7% from $377.65 million in fiscal 2013.
  • Net income of $61.24 million, down 8% from $66.55 million in fiscal 2013.





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