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Why Macy’s may be missing out: Report

Althea Chang

Women's apparel pricing at Macy's is such a turnoff to customers that they'd rather shop for clothes at lower-priced department stores, recent data suggest.

Nearly 40 percent of Macy's shoppers who go to the department store and buy home goods, for example, tend to make an extra trip to Kohl's to buy women's clothes, according to a recent report from Prosper Insights & Analytics, which surveyed 5,815 shoppers nationwide.

"Macy's has a lot of women's clothing shoppers. It's our number three women's clothing store, but we do see this cross shopping, what we call lost opportunity," said Pam Goodfellow, an analyst at Prosper.

Among shoppers who tend to leave Macy's for Kohl's when they're shopping for women's clothes, about 84 percent say they shop at the discount retailer for its prices. And those shoppers spend about $52 per month on women's clothes on average at Kohl's. Shoppers who mostly buy women's clothes at Macy's spend just over $76 per month in that category.

"When we look at the reasons consumers shop Kohl's we see that nearly half of them go to Kohl's for their special coupons and sales," Goodfellow said. "So Kohl's is very much a value-priced retailer giving consumers an opportunity to save a lot of money and has really engendered this loyalty for Kohl's."

But while Macy's may be losing customers to Kohl's as well as J.C. Penney for cheaper prices, loyal Macy's shoppers stay at the more expensive department store for women's clothes because of its quality and selection, according to Prosper's data.

Macy's didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

By Althea Chang

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