kohls facade
AP Photo/Terry Gilliam
  • Kohl’s partnership with Amazon is drawing in younger shoppers, the company said. 
  • Amazon customers can return items to Kohl’s stores through the partnership.
  • The program was launched in 2019 and has led to increased foot traffic in stores.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Kohl’s partnership with Amazon has helped it bring in over 2 million new customers into its stores in 2020.

During the company’s fourth quarter earnings call Tuesday, CEO Michelle Gass said Amazon has helped Kohl’s appeal to younger shoppers. Of the new customers drawn in by the Amazon partnership, millennials accounted for about one third.

“It continues to be a key contributor to driving traffic and introducing new customers to Kohl’s,” Gass said of the partnership. “We get really excited that a third of them are millennial customers. … I think we’re really strongly positioned to capture the market in the years ahead.”

The Amazon partnership was launched in 2019 when Kohl’s started accepting Amazon returns at its stores. In the three weeks following its launch, foot traffic increased nearly 24%.

Gass said the company has seen a further increase in demand for the program during the pandemic.

"I think the factors that have heightened during the pandemic, like convenience, play to our strengths," Gass said. She emphasized initiatives catered toward convenience that Kohl's had initiated years before the pandemic started - including the Amazon partnership and Kohl's online store.

Overall, it was a profitable fourth quarter for the retailer. In its fourth quarter, Kohl's beat analysts' estimates, in part due to consumer interest in athletic and casual wear, as well as a rebound in sales for the women's department, according to Kohl's Chief Financial Officer Jill Timm.

"The trend toward casualization and living actively has been underway for some time, but has accelerated with the pandemic," Gass said. "Our vision is to be the most trusted retailer of choice in the active and casual lifestyle."

While fourth-quarter revenue fell 10% from the previous year, profits came in at $343 million - 29% above the same period in 2019. 

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