Starting the middle of next year, Walt Disney will be rolling out a new version of its mall store format that is intended to suck in your child like a fairy princess crack pipe. “The goal is to make children clamor to visit the stores and stay longer,” writes Brooks Barnes in the New York Times, by using things like embedded chips in the packaging to trigger responses from the store’s furnishings, a rotating library of scents that fill the store, and karaoke.
Joystiq reported last night that Game Crazy “plans to close 200 of its approximately 680 locations at the end of October.” There’s no official list of which stores are closing yet, so feel free to ask your local Game Crazy employees and see if you can scare them.
BJ received the coupon at left, offering $9.99 off at Heartland America on September 9 (9/9/09, get it?) Which would be great if they had mailed it to him before 10 AM on September 10th. “Looks like if I want to use the coupon I will need to build a time machine,” he wrote.
Yesterday we posted a photo a reader sent in of a toy aisle in his local Walmart that was packed with junk food. We all got commenty on what exactly Walmart was doing—was it a one-off paid promo by Pepsi? A marketing experiment? A power-mad store manager driven crazy by shelving issues? Nah, it’s actually an intentional choice mandated by corporate.
A teenager is suing Abercrombie & Fitch and one of its former employees after she caught someone filming her in one of the store’s dressing rooms.
Brand specialist Bertrand Pellegrin has published a new book for retailers that says if they want to capture the typical guy’s dollar, they need to create more inviting spaces to shop in. The author “points to electronics stores, strip clubs, sports bars and gyms as spots where men feel comfortable socializing and spending money.” That may all be (kind of) true, but that’s gonna make one hell of a noisy, sleazy, sweaty, drunken place to shop for clothes.
Jonathan’s wife ordered some clothes from Banana Republic, and was confused when another, similarly-sized box arrived on their doorstep from Banana Republic a week later. This box was clearly not destined for her, since she had not ordered the exciting new “Open Your Own Banana Republic” playset.
“Names, like fashion trends, often don’t age well,” notes Chadwick Matlin over at Slate’s The Big Money. In this week’s “Broadband” video segment, he looks at Radio Shack’s weird rebranding effort to get people to call it “The Shack,” even though it’s not changing its name, and even though “The Shack” isn’t any better. “Radio Shack has hedged its bets,” Matlin writes, “Splitting its identity in two and not choosing either. What’s worse, neither is especially impressive, or especially modern.”
Jay Goltz, a small business owner in Chicago, thinks there are three reasons why customer service is so terrible at so many companies.
This is old news to some of our readers, but not all: Microsoft is planning to open their own retail stores. What would such a wondrous place look like? Gizmodo has a concept Powerpoint presentation (what else?) that shows what the stores could look like.
Jim spotted this confusing sign at a Fry’s store in Campbell, Calif. On a display of compact fluorescent light bulbs, the store helpfully notes that some assembly is required. “Is it safe to assemble your own fluorescent light bulbs?” he wrote. “I mean with the dangerous mercury vapor and all?”
Village Lighting in Bellingham, Washington refused to let a 29-year-old man use their bathroom, and the man retaliated by going completely batshit insane on them.
REI’s Director of Corporate Communications contacted us with an official statement about the recent showdown between two Loomis security guards and a customer with an iPhone at one of their Seattle stores. She says despite the document Shane says he was forced to sign at the police station, he is not banned from their stores. Below is REI’s official statement.
While Shane was standing in the customer service line at a Seattle REI, he watched two Loomis employees open and change out the cash in an ATM machine. Shane took a photo of them with his iPhone. This apparently freaked out the Loomis guards, the REI security staff, and then the Seattle police, who put handcuffs on Shane, drove him to the police station, and then made him sign a statement that he wouldn’t return to a REI store for a year. You might have noticed in that summary that they didn’t actually bring any charges against him, which should make it clear to anyone who wants to side with the faux Po-Po that what Shane did wasn’t illegal, that the rent-a-cops should be fired, and that REI and Loomis owe Shane a big apology.
The Circuit City death watch is long over, but now there’s a way to preserve those memories forever—maybe even to outfit an entire troupe of Circuit City re-enactors. Reader chainofcommand02 was shopping in a grocery outlet store when he discovered several cases of Circuit City polo shirts. Yours, for only $1.00.