GameStop’s stock exploded, but traffic to its stores is still down

DIVE BRIEF:

  • GameStop’s stock has famously exploded over the past two weeks or so. At the video game retailer’s stores, however, the company’s challenges continue. 
  • In December, visits to GameStop were down 24.1% year over year, according to foot traffic analytics firm Placer.ai. For the entire year of 2020, average monthly traffic was down 27.8%. 
  • For the first three weeks of January, year-over-year visits to GameStop stores were down by more than 12%, and down as much as 20.3% on the week of Jan. 18, according to emailed data from Placer.ai. 

DIVE INSIGHTS:

GameStop’s name has become a byword for many things over the past two weeks, though none of those things have much, if anything, to do with the retailing of video games. The boom in stock prices (which has largely fallen from its most recent peak on Friday) has been pegged to day-to-day trading realities and social media, not directly to any changes at the company or its circumstances.

But before the stock explosion, GameStop entered a period of transition with some momentum. Chewy founder and former CEO Ryan Cohen bought more than 10% of the retailer’s stock through his investment firm with an activist plan to transform GameStop into a “technology company” and away from brick-and-mortar retailing. 

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