Sport Chek Looks to Gain Consumer Market Share as it Launches Same-Day Delivery with DoorDash [Interview]

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A recent partnership with Sport Chek and delivery service DoorDash to provide same-day delivery from its network of store locations across Canada is improving the retailer’s ecommerce ecosystem and could be rolled out to other brands under the Canadian Tire Corporation umbrella.

Mike Moussa, Associate Vice President, ECommerce Fulfillment Network Experience for Canadian Tire Corporation, said the arrangement is currently in more than 170 of its 212 Sport Chek stores.

Mike Moussa

“Obviously over the months and years of the pandemic, we started to see a shift in customer desire for same-day delivery, really fast delivery, urgent kind of stuff. So much so that free shipping was great but customers would still get upset about how long free shipping took,” said Moussa. “And so we started to look at less conventional ways of getting our product to customers when they order online.

“These food delivery services were all the rage. So we started talking to them. DoorDash had the best coverage for our needs and a really easy to work with team in terms of the technical set up. We were able to put together a proof of concept December of 2021 in five stores, offering same-day delivery over Christmas. So we launched just a little over a week before Christmas. We saw that there’s a market for this. There is a segment of customers that buy that sort of last-minute item and they want it and they’re willing to pay the extra surcharge for it.

Forward With Design at SportChek (Image: Canadian Tire)

“Since then, we’ve continued to add stores and at the beginning of April, about 90 per cent of the eligible Sport Cheks, meaning Sport Cheks that are in a market that DoorDash operates, have been turned on and DoorDash has been doing a handful of orders per store across the country ever since. And we’ve been experimenting with pricing, with promotions, and with key retail moments. Some really interesting key moments in the Spring were Mothers’ Day and Father’s Day where we would see our volume for same-day delivery double that day before . . . as well as the day after where the recipients of gifts had gift cards and they wanted that item like right away.”

The service will become important in the coming days as it gets closer to schools opening across the country.

Sport Chek currently has 212 stores. One new store opened this year in Niagara Falls. One relocation in Peterborough will also take place this year.

“More and more, Canadians are looking for faster and easier ways to get products from their favourite brands delivered to them on the same day,” said Shilpa Arora, General Manager, DoorDash Canada, in a statement. “We are proud to partner with Sport Chek to offer their range of apparel and sporting equipment to consumers in Canada for convenient same-day delivery to their doorstep.” 

Moussa said the rollout of DoorDash will likely come in the future to other brands under the Canadian Tire Corporation umbrella.

“Everything that we do now, especially with this proof of concept, we’re really operating in a way that considers the enterprise . . (If)  there’s a customer that wants a pair of running shoes or backpack the same day, we have to assume that there’s probably a use case at Canadian Tire for anything in their assortments, anything in the Mark’s assortment especially when we consider workwear and sometimes the urgency around that,” he said. 

Sport Chek at West Edmonton Mall
Sport Chek at West Edmonton Mall. Photo by Matthew at Best Edmonton Mall

“We want to make sure when we test this and we build it, we build it so we’re only building it once and we’re able to extend that capability across our family of companies.”

Moussa said the trend firmly established during the pandemic of more consumers wanting their purchases delivered will continue.

“I think so. Maybe not necessarily at the same level that we saw when stores were closed as a percentage of the whole. But what we’re seeing a lot of is that customers have dipped their toes into different options and we’re starting to see an increased segmentation on what works for me under what context,” he said.

Mario Toneguzzi
Mario Toneguzzi
Mario Toneguzzi, based in Calgary, has more than 40 years experience as a daily newspaper writer, columnist, and editor. He worked for 35 years at the Calgary Herald covering sports, crime, politics, health, faith, city and breaking news, and business. He is the Senior News Editor with Retail Insider in addition to working as a freelance writer and consultant in communications and media relations/training. Mario was named as a RETHINK Retail Top Retail Expert in 2024.

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