What Does Bed Bath & Beyond’s Foot Traffic Look Like After Filing for Bankruptcy?
June 15, 2023
The once-popular category killer Bed Bath & Beyond likely boasted high levels of foot traffic during its prime in the 2000s. Bed Bath & Beyond was a go-to location for its variety of home goods at low prices that kept shoppers coming back up until about 2015, when the company’s volatile period began, which included years of dismal sales and several failed attempts to reinvigorate the business. Now, following the pandemic and the retail challenges that came along with it, Bed Bath & Beyond has filed for bankruptcy and begun widespread store closing sales.
How has consumer foot traffic to Bed Bath & Beyond stores changed following the company’s bankruptcy? To find out, we analyzed consumer foot traffic data to Bed Bath & Beyond stores across the country before and after the company filed for bankruptcy.
Bed Bath & Beyond Foot Traffic Levels
Bed Bath & Beyond officially filed for bankruptcy on April 23, 2023, so we analyzed consumer foot traffic to its locations from March 20 to May 27 of 2023. In the month prior to the bankruptcy announcement, foot traffic fell past -60% at the lowest points. However, since the company’s bankruptcy announcement, Bed Bath & Beyond’s foot traffic has surged by an impressive 34%. This suggests that their consumer interest was fading quickly up until it filed for bankruptcy, perhaps attracting deal hunters and shoppers looking to take advantage of store closing sales.
Notable Bed Bath & Beyond competitors Target, Lowe’s Home Improvement, and Kohl’s also boasted increases in foot traffic for the time period analyzed, but to a lesser degree. Target’s foot traffic increased 10% during this time period, and Lowe’s and Kohl’s saw increases of 8% and 29%, respectively. Bed Bath & Beyond’s substantial increase in foot traffic compared to competitors suggests that store closing deals attracted more visitors than usual. So, could this resurgence of Bed Bath & Beyond foot traffic linger throughout 2023?
Bed Bath & Beyond’s Wind Down
After Bed Bath & Beyond filed for bankruptcy, the company began the process of closing up shop, which included announcing the last day for customers to redeem the brand’s famous blue 20% off coupons—a mere few days following the bankruptcy declaration. These coupons originally functioned as a key factor in the chain’s popularity and were a strong extension of the brand. Now that the coupons are no longer being accepted, customers are relying on store closing sales for their deals, which is contributing to the recent criticism the company has faced.
Many shoppers who have recently visited Bed Bath & Beyond locations have complained about the lack of price reductions and low percentage-off sales. Many of the company’s deals are hovering at 10% off, with some items up to 50% off. Deal hunters have been expecting more from the sales, and they’re sharing their viral negative reviews on social media. With these video reviews quickly gaining visibility, could disgruntled customers affect Bed Bath & Beyond’s foot traffic in the coming months?
Foot Traffic to Bed Bath & Beyond in 2023
Since many recent Bed Bath & Beyond customers have been disappointed by the company’s liquidation sales, foot traffic could be affected as social media buzz surrounding the sales increases. Social media plays a critical role in consumerism today with 41% of purchases being influenced by social media. Consumers tend to trust social media reviews more than advertisements, so the negative reviews of Bed Bath & Beyond’s liquidation sales have the potential to disrupt the company’s rapidly rising foot traffic. Could the negative buzz really impact Bed Bath & Beyond’s foot traffic? It will be interesting to see how and if opposing consumer reviews affect the business.
At the end of the day, Bed Bath & Beyond is seeing foot traffic increase rapidly, so despite critics on social media, it’s safe to say that its store closing sales are having a positive impact on foot traffic. The company’s liquidation strategy has resonated with key segments of its audience, and that has resulted in significant foot traffic growth and buzz around the brand. So, as stores continue to prepare to close, and more consumers look for deals, Bed Bath & Beyond’s foot traffic could continue to grow.
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