Bed Bath and Beyond is decluttering.
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The home retailer reopens its 92,000-square-foot flagship store Thursday in New York City’s Chelsea neighborhood after being closed for remodeling since December 2020 – and its maze of piled-high racks of merchandise is becoming more shoppable.
The company is leveraging digital tools to bridge the in-store and online experience that will serve as a model of more modernized stores to come across the country.
"A key component of our plan is modernizing our stores to significantly elevate in-store shopping experiences while optimizing their role in our digital-first, omni-always approach to help customers unlock the magic in every room of their homes," Bed Bath & Beyond CEO Mark Tritton said.
For starters, shoppers can use the Bed Bath and Beyond app via its "in-store shopping mode" that will let them view product information, create registry lists and scan QR codes placed throughout the store so customers can shop for additional products, sizes and colors beyond what they see on the shelves.
The redesign will also replace its sky-high shelves with lower ones and have wider aisles for more visibility, highlighting categories like home organization, décor and bathroom. And, in the age of the post-pandemic, there’s also a "scan and buy" feature letting shoppers make purchases on demand and skip the check outline. The flagship will also be a hub for customers to pick up online orders.
Other added amenities to lure customers back in stores are flashy partnerships with brands like bedding company Casper for users to try in stores, and immersive in-store offerings, like a SodaStream Bubble Bar with on-site mixologists demonstrating how to use the machine. The company will also enlist in-store demos from brands like Dyson and Google Nest promoting "try before you buy" offerings.
And, in an effort to get shoppers to keep shopping in stores, there's a café for an on-site coffee break.
More than a year after the pandemic set Americans home-bound, sparking the need for storage items, organization and home items with more people working remotely, retailers had to pivot fast to changing consumer demand. Bed Bath and Beyond announced last July it would close down 200 of its stores as a part of its restructuring during COVID-19, helping the retailer save up to $350 million annually, FOX Business previously reported.
"Now, the real challenge is to bring that singular authentic experience to each location. The flagship renovation is emblematic of our $250 million three-year project to remodel 450 stores as we continue executing against our overall transformation strategy," a spokesperson for Bed Bath and Beyond told FOX Business Tuesday.
Home retailers are leaning into home improvement categories and starry partnerships spurred by content streaming on Netflix. Bed Bath and Beyond competitor The Container Store, the storage and organization company, saw record sales last September following its collaboration with the Netflix show "Get Organized with The Home Edit."
And it teamed up with tidying-up guru Marie Kondo soon after.