March 25, 2019

Nike's New Flagship and the Future of Retail

“Shopping in a physical store is soul-sucking: You have to fight through the crowd to find the stuff you want, if it’s even there. Then there’s a line at the fitting room, and another line to check out. By the time you leave, you’re disgruntled–and wondering why you didn’t just go online.

Nike’s new flagship store in New York City aims to change all that by making shopping in a physical store as convenient as shopping online. The six-floor, 68,000-square-foot store, which opens its doors today, will surely attract tons of tourists and Nike fans who want to experience the building’s two customization studios, one-on-one shoe consultation, and the sneaker center, which has displays showing how shoes are designed, prototyped, and built. But the store was also designed for those of us who prize convenience above all else.

Let’s say you need to pick up a new pair of running shoes, but you want to try on several styles before you buy, so shopping online doesn’t make a lot of sense. At the flagship store’s “Speed Shop,” you can reserve whichever shoes you want to try online, and then when you arrive at the store you can head straight to a set of lockers. One of them will have your name on it, and you can unlock it using your phone. The shoes you want to try will be inside. After you’ve decided which pair is right, you can use your phone to check out without ever having to stand in a line. You can be in and out of the store in minutes.”

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