Nike recently announced plans to grow from $30 billion today to $50 billion by the year 2020. While it is more than likely Nike will reach that goal given their very aggressive growth plans, one feature of this new directive is of particular interest – localizing store experiences.
Their store near the University of Alabama has “Roll, Tide, Roll” in large letters across the top of a large wall, a key focal point in the store and a motto by which all Alabama football fans live by. Another store in Los Angeles displays banners from every highschool within a radius of a few miles.
The goal is to not only provide merchandise that fits the demographics and geography of each location, but to tap into the local nostalgia and culture to instill a sense in the shopper that this store was created just for them.
According to a recent Washington Post article:
“Retailers have been working for years to figure the best way to leverage one of their most important assets — their brick-and-mortar stores — in the digital era. Many stores have a cookie-cutter design and sell the same merchandise across the country. But a growing number of retailers are now experimenting with what’s known in the industry as localization, or giving the outpost some of the originality and charm of a homegrown shop. Chains hope it will help them ring up greater sales and attract new shoppers — particularly millennials.”
Cloud-based visual merchandising applications are making it easier than ever for retailers to create localized assortments for each location and Nike is certainly not the only one looking to technology to help them provide a superior customer experience. In fact, many retailers from consumer electronics and foot/athletic wear to telecommunications and big box retailers are looking to new technologies to help them better understand their customers for that ever-increasingly valuable share of wallet.