Retail is the point of decision in consumer marketing. When a person stands before a product in the store, it’s decision time. The same holds true for people placing products in an online Shopping Cart. Will the shopper abandon or will she purchase?
These are fundamental questions for the country’s greatest retailers to address on a daily basis. In Seattle, where REI, Nordstrom, COSTCO, and Starbucks are headquartered, you have the traditionalists in one corner and Amazon.com—the great retail destroyer, in the other. You might call this built-in conflict.
For Nordstrom’s part, the department store has been a rare bright spot in the retail industry. Nordstrom reported that both revenue and same-store sales were up during the most recent quarter, as more people shopped online and in its stores.
Meanwhile, Macy’s, Kohl’s, Sears and J.C. Penney report declining sales and profits and are busy closing hundreds of stores.
While others close down, Nordstrom is opening a new concept store in West Hollywood next month. The 3,000-square foot Nordstrom Local showroom will have no clothes for sale, only clothes for shoppers to try on and order.
“We know there are more and more demands on a customer’s time and we wanted to offer our best services in a convenient location to meet their shopping needs,” Shea Jensen, Nordstrom’s senior vice president of customer experience, said.
According to NPR, customers will enter the store and find personal stylists in a central meeting space, where they can chat, get fashion advice and have a glass of beer or wine, cold-pressed juice or espresso.
That area is surrounded by eight dressing rooms where they can try on merchandise. The store will have on-site tailoring and alterations and provide for same-day pickup from online orders or same-day delivery.