Nordstrom is preparing to open more smaller stores with no inventory. The company said Monday, ahead of its investor meeting in West Hollywood, California, that it will open at least two more Nordstrom Local shops in Los Angeles, and is eyeing New York for expansion. In last year's fourth quarter, Nordstrom opened its first Nordstrom Local in Los Angeles. The store, roughly 3,000 square feet, has a nail salon, a bar stocked with beer and wine, a seamstress and ample fitting rooms. But you can’t buy any clothes there. You can have online orders shipped to the store for pickup, but the goal is for the smaller space to be experiential and service-oriented. Nordstrom said the new locations in Los Angeles — one in Brentwood and one downtown — would be tailored specifically to those neighborhoods.
Total Retail's Take: Give Nordstrom credit for being innovative and not just succumbing to the challenges of brick-and-mortar retail, particularly a brand with as many mall-based locations as Nordstrom has. The upscale department store chain has been proactive in evolving its business to account for the digital nature of today's consumers, and is testing ways to bridge the gap between online and offline shopping. Nordstrom Local stores are a prime example of that. The rest of the industry should take note of what Nordstrom is doing, and see how the concept could be applied to their own businesses. Are there services/offerings that you could make available at your stores to drive foot traffic and engagement with your brand?