Thanks for Visiting!

Register for free to get the full story.

Sign Up
Already have a account? Log In

Placer Bytes: Bed Bath & Beyond, Walgreens

Ethan Chernofsky
January 5, 2021
Placer Bytes: Bed Bath & Beyond, Walgreens

In this Placer Bytes, we dive into the Q4 performances of Bed Bath & Beyond and Walgreens to see how they ended their 2020 campaigns.

Bed Bath & Beyond’s Rocky End

Last year, we marked Bed Bath & Beyond as one of the brands we expected to emerge as a winner in 2020. And it certainly appeared to be on that path, posting same-store sales gain for the first time since 2016. But what about Q4?

Bed Bath & Beyond had 2019 visit levels in its sights by October, with visits down just 6.2% year over year. Yet, the combination of a resurgence of COVID cases and the high bar set by the 2019 holiday season caused the visit gap to increase to 17.8% and 15.0% in November and December respectively. But, even with this step back the quarter still marked the best for the brand in 2020 with visits down a monthly average of 13.0% year over year. This was better than the Q3 mark of 19.7%, and only slightly off the pace of pre-pandemic January and February when monthly visits were down an average of 12.3%

And there are also signs that the magnitude of visits may have offset the loss of visits. Even though the average monthly visit gap was 13.0% year over year in October, November and December, the average visit duration was up 9.8% during that same period, indicating a high potential for larger basket sizes and a likelihood of high conversion rates. A final positive note was that visits the week beginning December 21st were down just 7.4% year over year, the best weekly visit gap since October. All signs that point to a holiday season that may have performed far better than expected, and strong momentum heading into 2021.

Can Walgreens Close the Gap with CVS?

Beyond the obvious challenges levied by a year defined by COVID, Walgreens also happened to be operating against CVS, another 2020 winner. And while Walgreens actually began the year with an edge , January and February visits were up 5.4% on average, while CVS visits were up just 4.5% those months, the pandemic flipped that situation. 

In Q3 and Q4, Walgreens saw average monthly visits down 6.3% and 9.1% respectively, while CVS saw visits down 3.8% and 4.0% those same months. And while the slight edge for CVS is a challenge, both brands far outpaced Rite Aid, which saw average monthly visits gaps of 28.7% and 26.9% in Q3 and Q4 respectively. Critically, regional distribution matters a lot here with suburban focused chains seeing less of a hit than those oriented towards cities.

But, visits for Walgreens and Rite Aid were trending up into the end of 2020. Walgreens saw visits down just 3.7% the week of December 21st, the best mark since August, while Rite Aid’s weekly visit gap of 21.3% was its best since March. Yet, here too, CVS set the standard with visits up 0.1% the week of December 21st. And, with both Walgreens and CVS likely benefitting from the ability to provide vaccines and an increased focus on health and wellness, the battle between the two could be one of the most interesting to watch in 2021.

Will Bed Bath & Beyond continue its late 2020 surge into the new year? Who will lead the battle of US pharmacy giants in 2021? Visit to find out.

Get 3 brand & industry
breakdowns every week

Subscribe to the newsletter

Great! Prepare your inbox for data-driven insights...
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Get a Demo

Please enter your first name
Please enter your last name
Please provide a valid email
Please enter your email
Please enter company name

Thanks for reaching out!

One of our experts will be in touch soon

Try Free
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
How Will Primark’s US Expansion Impact Target?
All Eyes on Eyewear
Northwestern U.S. Grocery Dive
Return of the Lunch: Salad Chains Are Thriving
Retail Media Networks – Off the Beaten Track
Bet Your Bottom Dollar: Discount and Dollar Stores Drive Foot Traffic
Ulta & Lululemon: Discretionary Spending On The Up
The Score After Q1: Sporting Goods Chains
Who Uses NYC Airports: Biting Into The Big Apple’s Main Transport Hubs
Off Price: Strength in The Face of Retail Challenges
Visits Improve for Home Improvement
Walmart, Target & Wholesalers in Q1 2023 – The Return of Mission-Driven Shopping?
Department Store Roundup: Q1 2023 Office Index: April 2023 Recap Mall Index, April 2023 – A Rebound on the Horizon?
How Will Bed Bath & Beyond’s Bankruptcy Impact the Retail Space?
Buffet Restaurants: Filling Up on Foot Traffic
Thrift Stores: Vintage Visits Drive New Age in Apparel
The Windy City: A Hub of Post-Pandemic Opportunity
Diving into Dining Traffic - Q1 2023
Bring On The Joe
A Dollar (or more) For Your Thoughts: Five Below and pOpshelf
Dining Out With The Cheesecake Factory
Retail Foot Traffic Recap – March 2023
Digging Into 2023: McDonald’s and Chipotle Update Office Index: March 2023 Recap
How Did Key Retail Categories Perform in Q1 2023?
Northeastern USA Grocery Dive
Movie Theaters Storylines for 2023
Ollie's Bargain Outlet: Discounters are Evolving
Leveraging Brick-and-Mortar Retail in 2023
America’s Evolving Work Patterns: A Deep-Dive into New York and Chicago Mall Index March 2023
Tuning Into Record Stores
Five Franchises To Watch in 2023
What’s Next For Domestic Tourism?
It’s Showtime! Movie Theaters in the Spotlight
5 Limited Time Offers (LTOs) Driving Restaurant Traffic
Department Store Deep-Dive: Belk
Regional Grocery Chains Staying Ahead of the Competition
Five Chains that Rightsized for Success
Unlocking the Potential of Offline Retail Media Networks
Dining Out With Darden
What’s in Store for Self-Storage?
Nike & lululemon Update: Strong Performance Amid Expansion Plans
Many Ways to Win: Midwest Grocery Deep Dive
Retail, Reinvented: The Rise of the Pop-Up Shop
Navigating a New Normal in Business Travel & Commutes Office Index: February 2023 Recap
Retail Categories Staying Strong in Volatile Environment
Ulta Beauty: Poised for Success into 2023 Mall Index February 2023: Reasons for Continued Optimism
Catching Up With DICK’s & Hibbett
The Miami-Dade Arena: An Advertising Slam Dunk
Car Washes Revving Up Visits
Tuesday Morning and Sunrises in Home Furnishing
Dining & Valentine’s Day Recap
2023: The Year of the Discount Store
Aldi’s Success Highlights Growing Demand for Value Groceries
5 Retail & Service Categories Holding onto Pandemic Gains in 2023
Visitor Insights from Super Bowl 2023
2023 First Look: Home Improvement Update
How Are Target, Walmart, and Wholesale Clubs Faring in 2023?
Department Store Deep-Dive: Nordstrom
Off-Price: Taking Off in Uncertain Times
Checking in On Middle-Class Hubs
Who Attends the Super Bowl? Office Index: January 2023 Recap
Focusing On Fitness: Q4 and January Recap Mall Index: January 2023 – Returning Mall Normalcy?
Location Intelligence Insights Into Concert Attendance
Winning Dining Strategies for 2023
In-N-Out Burger: What to Expect as the Brand Moves East
Location Intelligence Breakdown: Coffee Caps-Off 2022
Digitally Native Brands Lean Into Brick & Mortar
Washington, D.C. Population Changes & Migration Trends
A Location Intelligence Perspective on Macy’s Rightsizing
Amazon-Powered Shopping: The Future of Brick-and-Mortar Grocery?
Cold Weather, Hot Visits: Diving into Winter Resorts
Wawa and 7-Eleven: Leaning Into the “Slurpee Effect”
2022 and Beyond: Catching Up With McDonald’s & Chipotle
Let’s Have Some Fun! Going Out Is In’s Q4 2022 Quarterly Index Adds Industry Executives to Leadership Team To Drive Company's Next Phase of Growth
5 Emerging Retail Formats: 2023’s Brick-and-Mortar Evolution
Grocery Update: Zooming in on the Lone Star State
2022 Office Recap: The Year of the TGIF Work Week
What Lies Ahead for Brick-and-Mortar Luxury in 2023 Mall Indexes: December 2022 Recap
Looking Back on 2022’s Holiday Shopping Season
Post-Pandemic Migration Trends in New York
Top Retailers for 2023
The Live Sports Advertising Opportunity
Domestic Migration to the Mountain States: Small Shifts with Big Implications
New Year, New Food: 5 Dining Trends For 2023
This is Why Shop-in-Shops Are Everywhere
Super Saturday 2022 Recap
The San Francisco Shift
Grocery Year-End Update: Publix in the Spotlight