Customers have been flocking back to warehouse clubs in recent months at levels even surpassing pre-pandemic levels, and Costco is dominating when it comes to market share according to a new report.
Foot traffic analytics firm Placer.ai ran the data, which shows Costco leads the way with 55.5% of wholesale customers walking through its doors in August compared to Walmart-owned Sam’s Clubs at 36.2% and BJ’s Wholesale standing at 8.3%.
|COST||COSTCO WHOLESALE CORP.||467.75||+14.97||+3.31%|
|BJ||BJS WHSL CLUB HLDGS INC||58.37||+0.26||+0.45%|
"Costco visits have been growing consistently compared to 2019, with visits in June, July, and August up 9.8%, 13.8%, and 12.8% compared to the equivalent months two years prior," Placer.ai reported. "The incredible surge in visits is a strong sign that the brand not only succeeded in having relative strength during the pandemic, but turned that short-term strength into a foundation for long-term success. Considering the stickiness of its membership model and the sustained strength seen pre-pandemic, there is real reason to believe that Costco will be even stronger in the coming years."
But all three wholesale clubs are seeing surges beyond 2019. During August, visits were up 11.9% at Sam’s Club and 15.4% at BJ’s compared to two years prior. For July, those figures were 13.8% for Costco, 18.1% for Sam's Club, and 17.1% for BJ's.
Meanwhile, as COVID-19 persists and the delta variant continues to surge, Costco has reinstated purchase limits on some items such as paper products and water, and reversed its decision to lift senior shopping hours over concerns regarding the virus.