Digital distribution poses a threat to the traditional retail business model, but GameStop has found a way to turn the trend in its favor. Speaking with VentureBeat, GameStop director of retail digital distribution Brad Schliesser said that customers have been buying DLC codes with their games more than any other offering in the store.
"DLC for us attaches better to a physical game than any other accessory or add-on that we have in our company--whether it's a headset, a controller, or strategy guide--because it's so easy for the consumer to understand what it is they're getting," Schliesser said.
To date, the best example of that was From Ashes, the $10 day-one DLC for Mass Effect 3. Schliesser said that 50 percent of GameStop customers who picked up the regular edition of Mass Effect 3 purchased From Ashes from the store in the same transaction. He added that the keys to driving those sales are employees who understand what's being offered in the content and can properly pitch it to consumers, something that online storefronts don't have.
Digital sales are becoming an increasingly important part of the retailer's business. Last quarter, GameStop's $127 million in digital sales accounted for more than 7 percent of its $1.77 billion in revenues. In the same quarter of 2011, digital sales made up roughly 5 percent of the company's overall take.