By Nathaniel Meyersohn, NCS Business
For years, purchasing at Bed Bath & Beyond has meant dealing with chaos. You may lose hours sifting by means of a hodgepodge of things on cluttered cabinets and stroll out with nothing.
Now, the chain is making an effort to get organized, Marie Kondo-style.
At its flagship location in New York City, the chain has eradicated 44% of merchandise and organized what stays by class, worth and model, versus its earlier technique of carrying dozens of various tub mats and may openers. The chain additionally lowered cabinets, widened aisles and decreased the house on the gross sales ground by round 15% to make it easier for purchasers to search out merchandise they’re trying to find.
It’s all a part of Bed Bath & Beyond’s plan to “modernize” its stores. The chain is making a $250 million funding to declutter and renovate 450 places — greater than half its complete — over the subsequent three years. Bed Bath & Beyond has confronted falling gross sales and declining foot visitors in recent times as customers defect to stores like Target and store on Amazon, which carry a lot of the identical fundamentals that Bed Bath & Beyond sells.
CEO Mark Tritton defined among the modifications at an occasion with reporters Tuesday. “We just didn’t need to stack [products] to the ceilings,” he mentioned, noting that customers have been beforehand overwhelmed by their decisions.
Tritton joined Bed Bath & Beyond from Target two years in the past and has led the corporate by means of a turnaround over the previous 12 months with housebound customers growing their spending on kitchen and residential necessities. The firm can also be closing 200 underperforming stores.
Fixing ‘outdated’ stores
The flagship retailer is about to reopen Thursday after seven months of renovations.
It options new mini-shops for manufacturers comparable to Casper, SodaStream, Nespresso and Dyson the place customers can check out merchandise and a restaurant for customers to seize La Colombe espresso or a sandwich mid-shop. Bed Bath & Beyond’s purpose with these additions is to compel customers to spend extra time within the retailer. The flagship is the one reworked retailer that can have a restaurant, nevertheless.
Bed Bath & Beyond has additionally tried to enchantment to clients who need a faster go to to the shop. It has added a devoted pickup space for purchasers buying merchandise on-line, a function to its cellular app the place clients can scan and purchase merchandise on the app as they store and bypass the checkout line, and self-checkout stations.
Cristina Fernandez, a retail analyst at Telsey Advisory Group, mentioned Bed Bath & Beyond’s stores “looked outdated” and “hadn’t been invested in for many years.”
Modernizing stores will likely be essential to serving to Bed Bath & Beyond compete with Target, HomeItems, At Home and Amazon, she mentioned. “Their stores weren’t really a good shopping experience and that needed to change.”
One different change on the flagship: Joe Hartsig, the corporate’s chief merchandising officer, mentioned Bed Bath & Beyond had beforehand “not been addressing more value-conscious consumers.” So it’s showcasing new private brands comparable to Simply Essential — a house, kitchen and tub product line with ladles and serving spoons for $1, tub towels for $4, and pillows for $5 — across the retailer with huge blue indicators promoting their low costs. The firm plans to extend its personal label model gross sales to 30% of complete gross sales, up from round 10% final 12 months.
Bed Bath & Beyond executives additionally emphasised on the Tuesday occasion that the reworked retailer had higher lighting and upgraded ground paneling than the outdated one. Stacey Shively, a senior vice chairman, mentioned that the bedding and tub part within the basement of the shop was “dark and gloomy and a little depressing.”
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