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Adidas achieves equilibrium with a 50/50 balance between in-store and e-commerce sales

Published: 26th Jan 2024
Author: By Tinashe Mandirahwe; Retail analyst at

The Samba OG Shoes by Adidas, like much of its other merchandise, is available in-store and online. Image: Adidas

Adidas, a dominating force in the sportswear and footwear sector, has successfully achieved a perfect equilibrium, with an equal split between traditional brick-and-mortar and cutting-edge e-commerce sales, as outlined in a recent report by Retail Brew. The intriguing question arises: what factors could have propelled this surge in online sales for this footwear and sportswear giant?

The Power of Visual Allure and Compelling Product Narratives

One pivotal catalyst steering the upswing in e-commerce transactions is the profound impact of visually captivating images and compelling product descriptions. In the highly competitive realm of footwear and sportswear, where aesthetics wields significant influence, the allure of visually appealing imagery and engaging product narratives significantly shapes consumer preferences.

Overcoming the Shoe Fitting Challenge:

Traditionally, the apprehension surrounding online shoe purchases stemmed from uncertainties about the fit. However, this challenge is now diminishing, with Adidas and other industry players streamlining returns and refunds, making the online shopping experience more convenient. The ease of returning products for the right size or a refund has instilled greater confidence in consumers when purchasing shoes online.

Other Factors Propelling E-Commerce Ascendancy:

In addition to these pivotal factors, several other dynamics contribute to the extraordinary surge in e-commerce dominance. The allure of 24/7 shopping convenience, personalized recommendations based on browsing history, and the ease of comparing prices across various platforms are additional enticements propelling consumers toward online purchases.

The Future

Shoemakers are likely to adopt the wise approach of learning from Adidas and seizing the opportunities afforded by the digital age. Investing in robust online infrastructure and prioritizing customer satisfaction are key strategies to navigate the continually evolving retail landscape. The intriguing question that looms is — ‘when will we enter an era where the majority of shoe purchases occur online rather than in brick-and-mortar stores?’ It appears that the current trend will persist, making such a shift inevitable. While this might not happen soon in other countries, in the USA, it will likely occur sooner than we all think. 

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