First Look: Nike’s new store concept uses digital-user data to curate merchandise
Nike is launching a format that breaks new ground in using technology to provide a shopping experience that caters to local tastes.
The new concept, called Nike Live, is inspired by — and built as a hub for — local members of the company’s NikePlus loyalty program. The first one, Nike by Melrose, will open on July 12, on trendy Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles. (Click here for a video tour). It has pop-up vibes and a streamlined interior, and will operate as an experimental digital-meets-physical retail pilot. The products and services in the store are based on a deep understanding of the neighborhood, according to Nike. More neighborhood-specific locations will open in cities around the globe, including Tokyo, next spring and beyond.
The store will offer a selection of nike.com best-sellers and essential running, training and sportswear product. It will also will offer city-specific products, with the inventory determined by Nike’s digital commerce data. The retailer will analyze buying patterns, app usage and engagement of its local NikePlus members to stock shelves, with a goal of serving local NikePlus members what they want when they want it. New apparel, footwear and accessories — all specific to LA’s needs regardless of Nike’s broader seasonal priorities — will fill the store on a bi-weekly basis (a Nike first) and sometimes even exclusively.
The store’s features include a “Sneaker Bar” that is designed to make trying on and buying footwear quick and easy. It also boasts a “Dynamic Fit Zone” that boasts a lounge where customers can relax and an area where customers can get styling tips from Nike associates. Customers can try out products on a treadmill in the “Trial Zone.”
And in another example of how the concept blends the online with the physical, NikePlus members can redeem product or rewards by using their member pass at the NikePlus “Unlock Box” (essentially a digital vending machine).
According to Nike, data provided its NikePlus members in Los Angeles shows that they are running and style obsessed. They love basketball and are on the competitive side. They’re sneakerheads and visionaries. Consequently, for its opening, Nike by Melrose will be stocked with plenty of Nike Cortez styles, a ton of running product, bright colorways and hip packs.
‘Emerald City’ Amazon Go in the works
With locations planned for Chicago and San Francisco, Amazon Go is also expanding in its own backyard.
Amazon plans to open a second location for its cashier-less store format, Amazon Go, in its hometown of Seattle, reported GeekWire.
Set to open in fall 2018, the new outpost will be located on the first floor of a 36-story high-rise building, according to the report. And at approximately 3,000 sq. ft., it will be about 70% larger than the original — and still the only — 1,800-sq.-ft. Amazon Go, which is located about one mile away in an Amazon office building, and opened to the public in January.
Click here to read more about Amazon Go.
Bluemercury rides beauty boom with store expansion
With sales of premium beauty products on the rise, Bluemercury shows no signs of losing its momentum.
The beauty retailer, which was acquired by Macy’s in 2015, plans to open about 25 stores this year, and another 30 in 2019, reported Bloomberg. The expansion will give Bluemercury a total of some 215 stores. (The retailer also is opening in-store locations at Macy’s.)
Bluemercury is using technology to give it an edge. It is expanding its within-an-hour delivery service from New York to Los Angeles, and also developing phone-recognition software to identify customers as they enter a store, the report said, with the intent of sending the customer product suggestions based on recent purchases.
Click here to read more.