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    October 8, 2020
    5 minute read

    5 Legacy Brands Embracing the D2C Model

    by: Lauren McMenemy

    The COVID-19 pandemic has shifted more buying online. Legacy brands that relied solely on department stores and other third-party retailers to reach customers have faced months of uncertainty about order fulfillment and demand.

    Many brands have discovered that a direct-to-consumer (D2C) website helps to better engage customers, boost speed to market, and have direct access to new patterns of consumer demand.

    D2C Provides Brands Flexibility and Better Customer Relationships

    Brands are seeing 30% or more growth in D2C traffic. Adopting a D2C model in addition to the traditional retail and distributor relationships you already have in place, provides more flexibility and insight that can impact better merchandising and sales across the digital shelf.

    Here’s how five legacy brands are using the D2C model today.

    Levi’s Combines Personalization and DIY Culture

    Levis D2C Example

    Levi's has stitched together its digital shelf and the in-store experience - all in support of helping customers to create those one-of-a-kind looks and products that are infinitely Instagrammable.

    Online at Levi's Tailor Shop, shoppers can personalize everything including tees, totes, trucker jackets and, of course, jeans. There is plenty of additional content and inspiration to be found on Levi’s digital guide to DIY style, including ways to repurpose the old denim.

    In store, Levi’s offers a more exclusive experience — working with a Levi’s master tailor directly. Either way, it’s about expressing yourself through fashion and craft.

    Gillette Adopts a Subscription Model

    Gillette D2C Example

    Gillette launched a D2C subscription, following the success of its competitors Harry’s Razors and Dollar Shave Club. Each “starter kit” includes a blade, handle and travel case. Shipping is free and loyalty is rewarded, every fourth order is free.

    Shoppers can customize their kits and delivery schedule. The site hosts a library of content that hits the right notes for generations of “manscaping” and style enthusiasts.

    Marucci Sports’ Custom Bats Are a Hit

    Marucci Sports D2C Example

    Recently overtaking the Louisville Slugger brand as the top provider of baseball bats to Major League Baseball players, Marucci Sports is giving consumers the all-star treatment.

    Shoppers can customize baseball bats, down to the color of the handles and phrases inscribed into the wood, on the D2C site. Every level of athlete and sports enthusiast can get fielding and batting tips as well as a completely unique product.

    Frito-Lay Delivers to Stay-at-Home Snackers

    Frito Lays D2C Example

    Frito-Lay responded to an increase in at-home snacking with a pick-n-mix site that lets shoppers create a personal “snack pack” for home delivery. It’s a long way from the traditional multipacks and empowers customers to just choose their favorites.

    Colorful product images, customer accounts for saved orders, and free shipping all reinforce Frito-Lay’s fun and flavorful brand.

    King Arthur Flour Rises to Meet Pandemic Sales Demand

    King Arthur Flour D2C Example

    The country’s oldest flour brand King Arthur Flour saw a 260% increase in site traffic and a 200% increase in ecommerce sales from mid-March to May many turned to at-home baking during the pandemic.

    King Arthur upgraded its website to host dynamic, personalized content. The result is an easy to browse, engaging ecommerce site that can be filtered according to need, with recipes and baking tutorials.

    How to Future-Proof Business With D2C

    There’s more urgency than ever before to provide shoppers with digital and direct experiences. Many brands are diversifying their go-to-market strategy to include D2C and expanding their digital shelf reach.

    Logistics firm Bringg found that 48% of brand manufacturers are racing to build D2C channels, and most are using the strength of their brand content and providing shoppers unique or custom experiences they can control.

    Learn more about developing an impactful D2C strategy with our on-demand webinar, "Your D2C Value Prop: Launch a D2C That Lasts."


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