The Amazon threat is creating spaces for innovation in brick-and-mortar retail and traditional retailers are stepping up to the challenge.
Cross-town rival, Nordstrom, is responding to Amazon’s Prime Apparel offer by flexing its experiential muscles. Nordstrom has just launched a new small format concept, Nordstrom Local, that eschews inventory to focus entirely on the in-person experience.
Prime Apparel replicates the in-store apparel buying experience by allowing customers to try on styles, keeping what they want and returning the rest. Nordstrom Local provides experiences such as manicures and tailoring while also helping customers choose styles with the help of personal stylists and dressing rooms, with looks available available through an app or sourced by nearby locations rather than in-store.
Our Magid Retail Pulse Survey has shown that 60% of Nordstrom shoppers are Amazon Prime members and a third of them purchase apparel online via Amazon. The Nordstrom Local concept provides an opportunity to keep customers in the franchise by creating a desirable exclusive, personalized experience while investing customers in the choices co-developed by knowledgeable associates.
By focusing on its key advantages, the Nordstrom Local concept will show whether or not the chain’s experiential advantages are enough to counteract the Amazon Effect. Nordstrom is giving itself a fighting chance by pursuing innovation that brings the fight to its home turf.