Kohl’s to Accept In-Store Returns for Items Purchased on Amazon

Kohl’s Corporation (NYSE: KSS) announced that starting in July it will begin accepting returns for items purchased on Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) at all of its stores.

Kohl’s and Amazon first kicked off the return program in 2017, which is currently operating in just 100 stores. The service will soon expand to more than 1,150 locations across the U.S., the retailer said. Kohl’s will also begin carrying Amazon products in more than 200 stores.

While other department store chains like J.C. Penney (NYSE: JCP) and Macy’s (NYSE: M) struggle to compete with e-commerce giants, Kohl’s “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” strategy seems to be paying off.

Data reported by Earnest Research found that sales at Kohl’s stores in Chicago, a market where the retailer first began accepting Amazon returns, outpaced sales nationwide last year. Data also found that the percentage of new customers at Kohl’s increased 9% in the Chicago area in 2018, compared to a 1% increase nationwide

“This new service is another example of how Kohl’s is delivering innovation to drive traffic to our stores and bring more relevance to our customers” said Michelle Gass, Kohl’s chief executive officer. In addition to its collaboration with Amazon, Kohl’s has been banking on the smaller-store strategy. It’s been shrinking some locations nearly 60% to make space for tenants like Aldi, or Planet Fitness (NYSE: PLNT). The goal for Kohl’s is that a food-shopper or gym-goer might stop in to buy something.

Kohl’s stock has jumped about 22% over the past year, bringing the Company’s market cap to about USD 11.9 billion.