Clothing subscription company Rent the Runway has added drop boxes to four Nordstrom locations in Los Angeles. The deal, which CNBC announced on Thursday, is Rent the Runway’s second plan to expand its reach after agreeing last fall to put drop boxes in certain WeWork locations. The drop boxes will be at three of Nordstrom’s small-format neighborhood locations, known as Nordstrom Local: on Melrose Avenue, in the city's Brentwood neighborhood, and downtown. There will also be a drop box added to Nordstrom’s full-line store at The Grove in Los Angeles. Rent the Runway also said it will likely be growing with Nordstrom beyond California after this initial rollout is complete.
Rent the Runway shoppers normally return items via a box in the mail, which slows the turnaround time for new orders under the company’s monthly subscription plans. In-store drop boxes would speed up the opportunity for customers to get their subscription-based orders more quickly.
Total Retail's Take: It's clear that adding drop boxes to well-trafficked physical stores like Nordstrom helps Rent the Runway achieve its goal of acquiring more subscribers and attracting new ones. After all, it makes the whole process of ordering clothes and returning them easier. In addition to being a positive development for Rent the Runway, the partnership also stands to benefit Nordstrom. The in-store drop boxes are an incentive to help draw shoppers — perhaps some that are new to Nordstrom — into the upscale retailer's stores. “We believe that Rent the Runway and Nordstrom customers share a lot of the same qualities,” Shea Jensen, senior vice president of customer experience, Nordstrom, told CNBC. “Customers have told us that convenience matters to them.”