Chico’s launches updated mobile apps for all its brands

Diving brief:

  • As it focuses on improving its digital operations, Chico’s FAS unveiled new mobile apps for Chico’s, White House Black Market and Soma, the company announced Tuesday.
  • The apps integrate with brand loyalty programs and include a store locator, “App Stories” content carousels and barcode scanning. The company enlisted Poq, a mobile shopping app developer, to build the apps.
  • So far, the apps have been downloaded over 75,000 times and have a 4.9 star rating in the iOS app store. The company said an Android version of the apps will launch this week.

Overview of the dive:

The redesign of the company’s mobile apps follows various leadership changes at Chico’s as it pursues a turnaround and aims to expand its digital capabilities.

Last March, the company appointed Jay Topper as Chief Digital Officer and wheresee its technology, security and supply chain. The company also has brought Macy veteran Nancy Johnson last year as senior vice president and general merchandise manager of merchandising and design for the Chico’s brand and hired former Lululemon executive Patrick Guido as new CFO.

The company has also improved its delivery capabilities to attract consumers. Chico’s teams up with Roadie in December 2020 to offer same-day delivery for White House Black Market, Soma and Chico’s stores. A year later, the company started using Walmart GoLocal to deliver goods for all three brands as the big-box retailer’s first fashion customer.

“The launch of these new mobile apps is another step in our work to leverage cutting-edge digital capabilities to drive loyalty and sales conversion,” Stacey Blicker, vice president of digital commerce, said in a statement. . “These apps create an additional sales channel for customers to fall in love with our brands by providing a unique brand experience, another way to enjoy social commerce, and a more personalized browsing and shopping experience.”

As Chico’s adds new digital features, the company evaluates its physical footprint. In 2021, the company planned to close 30 to 40 stores due to underperformance, but those closings slowed in the third quarter on the back of improved profitability in some locations. CEO Molly Langenstein said the company’s third-quarter 2021 earnings were the best third-quarter earnings performance for the company since 2016. The following quarter, the company saw a 28.5% increase in sales over last yearand its net sales for the year increased by 36.7%.

Lance B. Holton