Case Study
Jan 8, 2024

Dicks Sporting Goods eCommerce case study and how to start a look-alike marketplace

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Dick's Sporting Goods is a popular retail chain offering a diverse array of products including athletic wear, outdoor gear, sports equipment, and fitness accessories. If you're aiming to launch a similar eCommerce venture in a marketplace model, Vendo simplifies the process, enabling you to begin selling a variety of top-notch products from numerous outstanding brands.

The Vendo platform allows you to effortlessly establish a look-alike marketplace swiftly, operational within days. With Vendo, concerns about inventory and shipping logistics are eliminated, freeing you to concentrate on the most crucial aspect - your customers.


Vendo is also a one-stop-shop for all your marketplace needs, providing you with a marketplace platform automating day-to-day operation, a catalog of brands to pick from or an ability to invite your own brands, merchandising and promotional tools, ability to sell through multiple channels (your existing website, emails & SMS, mobile app, social media), and ongoing daily support scaling your marketplace business.   

Dick's Sporting Goods eCommerce success story

Dick's Sporting Goods kicked off in 1948 with a determined 18-year-old named Dick Stack in Binghamton, New York. Working at an Army surplus store, Dick's vision for a fishing tackle business was dismissed, leading him to quit. 

With $300 from his grandmother's savings, Dick opened a small bait-and-tackle shop. His tenacity paid off, and by 1958, he broadened his inventory to resemble today's Dick's Sporting Goods. His son, Ed Stack, along with his siblings, transformed the two stores into a nationwide chain of over 500. Today, Dick's is known for top-notch products at great prices, coupled with unbeatable service. They're all about sports, just like their customers. As a comprehensive sporting goods retailer, Dick's offers everything from sports equipment to apparel and footwear. They also manage Golf Galaxy, a golf specialty retailer, and run robust e-commerce operations, ensuring sports enthusiasts have everything they need at their fingertips.

Diving into Dick's Sporting Goods success, their top-selling product categories are a good place to start:

  1. Athletic Apparel: Think jerseys, sweat-wicking tees, and leggings. Brands like Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour are big hits, offering both performance and style.
  2. Footwear: From running shoes to cleats, they've got it all. Big sellers often include the latest from Nike Air Max, Adidas Boost, and Asics Gel lines.
  3. Outdoor Gear: Camping enthusiasts love their selection of tents, sleeping bags, and backpacks. Brands like The North Face and Patagonia are often sought after for their durability and comfort.
  4. Fitness Equipment: Home gyms have spiked in popularity. Items like treadmills, dumbbells, and yoga mats from brands like Bowflex and Gaiam are consistent bestsellers.
  5. Team Sports Equipment: From soccer balls to basketball hoops and everything in between, Dick's provides a wide array for team enthusiasts.
  6. Golf Equipment: Through Golf Galaxy, they offer clubs, bags, and attire. Brands like Callaway and TaylorMade are particularly popular.

Now, let's break down their success factors:

  • Quality and Variety: They're not just selling products; they're offering a wide range of high-quality options. Whether you're a beginner or a pro, they have something for you.
  • Strong Brand Relationships: By stocking popular and reputable brands, they've become a trusted one-stop-shop.
  • Customer Experience: Their in-store and online shopping experiences are user-friendly, offering expert advice and easy navigation.
  • Community Engagement: They sponsor sports leagues and events, showing their support for the sports community and staying top of mind for consumers.
  • E-commerce Strategy: Their online platform is robust, with detailed product descriptions, reviews, and an easy checkout process. They've also mastered the art of online sales and promotions.
  • Adaptability: They've continuously evolved with trends and consumer needs, expanding into e-commerce, and diversifying their product range.

For anyone looking to replicate this success in their e-commerce venture, the key is to understand your market deeply, offer a wide range of quality products, create a seamless shopping experience, build strong brand partnerships, and always be ready to adapt to changing consumer preferences.

Get started with a look-alike marketplace like Dick's Sporting Goods on Vendo!


  • Book a demo call: We’ll set you up with a demo marketplace 
  • Customize your Storefront: We’ll help you craft an on-brand shopping UX 
  • Onboard Brands: Pick from the Vendo brand catalog. Or invite your own.
  • Select Products: Curate product collections manually or automate it.
  • Embed products: Make your editorial content and newsletters shoppable 
  • Get Paid: Get paid as soon as products are shipped by the brands. 
  • Get Repeat Sales: Keep your customer relationship, emails, order history


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