Nike expands its local store concept
Nike is taking its data-driven, small-store format to the next level.
The athletic goods giant has expanded its Nike Live store format to two additional locations: Long Beach, Calif., and Tokyo. Nike piloted the concept, which is focused on localization, personal service, digital integration and convenience, last July, on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles. The format uses data science and consumer insights to meet the needs of local shoppers, specifically the members of Nike’s NikePlus loyalty club.
“Nike Live is the result of a singular vision: to design the most locally-relevant experience out there leveraging digital with personal service,” said Cathy Sparks, VP, general manager, of Global Nike Direct Stores & Service.
The two new Nike Live storefronts integrated key learnings gleaned from more than 80 tests delivered through last year’s launch, the company said. The digitally-enabled spaces are designed and curated to provide the ultimate localized physical shopping experience for members.
“These stores will be able to cater even more to their local communities, fueled by constant analysis of the online buying patterns, app usage and engagement of members in the local neighborhoods,” Nike said.
Long Beach: More than Nike on Melrose, the Long Beach location is designed to serve as a community hub and gathering spot for events and activities, with an emphasis on the human connection. It offers more Nike activities, including group workouts, in-store pop-up events and networking opportunities, which are only available to members.
Nike Long Beach also reflects the company’s increased focus on its women’s business. It boasts a broad selection of women’s apparel and footwear, along with personalized coaching and other related programming for women.
The façade has a custom mural designed to represent the diverse community of Long Beach and its sport connections. The interior is open and inviting, with plenty of seating. Handwritten notes from store associates (“store athletes” in Nike-speak) are displayed throughout the space, highlighting a new product or a personal favorite item. The bios of associates (75% who hail from Long Beach) and favorite upcoming events are spotlighted on a community board.
A focal point of Nike Live is the sneaker bar, which has been upgraded in Long Beach to serve as a true shopping destination. It features more than 100 pairs of lifestyle and performance shoes, with in-store customization options. Visitors can consult one-on-one with a store associate at the bar and pick up product that has been reserved or purchased online.
The NikePlus Unlock Box, which debuted in Nike’s Melrose Avenue location, is also featured in Long Beach (and Tokyo). It’s stocked with Nike accessories that members can redeem — free of charge — using their Nike App member pass. Shoppers can unlock new items every 14 days.
The store is tied into the Nike app. NikePlus members can scan barcodes on item tags for more in-depth product information. They can also use the app to check out in-store or order online.
On a sustainability front, the Long Beach outpost is in line with Nike’s Move to Zero campaign, which the company launched in September to inform consumers of its commitment to sustainability. The building is LEED certified and reusable materials are used throughout the space, including the first mannequins made with “Nike Grind,” the scraps made from ground-up sneakers. The store’s display hangers, floors and some of its walls and tables are also made of the same material. The curtains in the fitting rooms are made from recycled fabric scraps.
Tokyo: Located near a highly trafficked commuter station in the city’s Shibuya district, Nike Tokyo has a design inspired by busy commuters. Subway tiles line the floor and walls. Digital screens/tickers surround the space, providing news on the latest product offerings and highlighting local sports moments.
Similar to Long Beach, the Tokyo location of the new Nike format has a strong community pull.
The Tokyo outpost offers a new tech tool that allows NikePlus members to chat directly with store employees via the LINE mobile messaging app. (LINE is the most popular app of its kind in Thailand, Indonesia, Taiwan and Japan.) With the tap of a link, through checking out the store page or by friending the store through LINE, consumers can connect quickly the store team to ask a question or to learn about what current store exclusive product is in stock.