Casper striving to flip mattress industry into new retail realm

| by Judy Mottl
Casper striving to flip mattress industry into new retail realm

Casper Co-Founder and CEO Philip Krim is forging a new retail approach in the legacy business of selling mattresses, and he isn't about to lie down and surrender on his quest anytime soon.

Selling mattresses doesn't sound sexy or innovative, but Krim believes consumers want a better product and don't enjoy the current mattress-buying experience.

"Everyone hates the traditional mattress store experience," said Krim during a fireside chat session at the ShopTalk event earlier this month in Las Vegas. "We want a memorable experience for consumers to remember," he said.

That memorable experience features a 100-night trial for consumers and the option of one "perfect mattress," explained Krim. There's also the promise of one-day delivery in the N.Y. market and one to five days nationwide.

"The returns [regarding the trial period] are much lower than we expected them to be," he said, declining to provide a specific return percentage.

The omnichannel retailer has 160 employees and is the industry's first global sleep brand, claims Krim. The company, which began as a pure online retailer, is  going into brick-and-mortar environments through pop-ups in San Francisco and Washington, D.C., plans to expand to Germany and London. New York City consumers can check out the company's products at its showroom.

The company is not just about mattresses; it also sells all things sleep — such as pillows and sheets.  Krim said the U.S. mattress business is a $14 to $15 billion industry and expects it to be a $37 billion global business by 2020.

"We have a different view than the incumbents [in this space]," said Krim.

While consumer purchase is infrequent, as most consumers keep a mattress for at least a decade, the purchase is expensive. Krim is banking on customers coming back after a rewarding mattress experience.

"We control the product and that's the difference," he said. "We always knew that we wanted a long-term relationship with our shoppers."

Topics: Consumer Behavior, Customer Experience, Customer Service, eCommerce, Marketing, Merchandising, Omnichannel / Multichannel, Online Retailing

Companies: Casper

Judy Mottl

Judy Mottl is an experienced editor, reporter and blogger who has worked for top media including AOL, InformationWeek and InternetNews. She’s written everything from breaking news to in-depth trends. She loves a great pitch so email here, follow on Twitter and connect on LinkedIn.

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