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Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by klm9210, Feb 6, 2017.
Something about the standalones exude a certain elegance and uniqueness.
No, I really can't say that a mall store vs a stand alone store makes a difference.
I think a lot of it's location. Suburban vs urban and the expectations each brings.
And then there's the architectural standards needed to meet each audience's expectation. That and the fact that higher building quality/costs in an urban environment will be covered by higher revenue.
It's a retail store. I don't see any difference.
Regardless of location, they are always busier than all the other stores around them combined. I suspect the standalone stores have a more motivated clientele than the mall browsers. Standalones may sell more per visit than Mall stores as a result. But, the products and prices are the same in both.
It might be interesting to see if there is a correlation between technical competency by mall versus standalone store. In my state, it seems evenly matched based on what I have seen.
Whenever I've hit an Apple store, it always seems that there's more traffic with people trying to get their broken Apples fixed at the "Genius" Bar, than people buying new Apples.
I hope that Angela notices that, and lights a fire under the QA teams.
The one in the Stanford Mall doesn't have much to distinguish it from the one in Palo Alto. And yet one is "in a mall." Perhaps you can refine what you mean?
Both Palo Alto stores are "a lot of glass and a bunch of tables showing a small number of products".
You'll get no argument from me. I'm not particularly fond of either. But I can't really think of a commercial enterprise whose store architecture/design I think about in any way at all, including Apple.
Most of the repairs are either software, or device damage. Having worked there for a few years, the vast majority of the issues are not just hardware that has gone bad. I would also venture to say that Angela is not in charge of hardware/software QA teams. Apple has insane internal metrics that they don't share about device failures, etc.
A crude and inaccurate way to measure store visitor activity. Most Genius Bar repair activities take a while. Purchasing can be done extremely quickly.
Also, let us remember that Apple Stores generate the highest revenue per square foot for chain retail, even more than jewelry stores like Tiffany. Clearly, some people are walking out the door with retail purchases.
That means that despite whatever area is dedicated to Genius Bar activities (many of which are not revenue generating), Apple is compensating for it in the zone that would be considered the sales floor. If you walk into a Tiffany & Co. store, there is very little area reserved for repair work.
Plus, Apple has an almost unique situation with iPhone release day. There are people camped out for up to a week. They may only let a few people in at a time, but there's a line two blocks long. No other chain luxury retailer has kind of response. Yeah, sure, the big box stores do on Black Friday, but they don't make the same margins as Apple.
Walking into an Apple Retail Store on a random day and saying that it can't be making much money because more people are gathered around the Genius Bar is a near-sighted and bungled interpretation of Apple's bricks-and-mortar retail business.
As for the original inquiry, I probably judge Apple Stores more about their general neighborhood location than the actual type of storefront. Apple's Paris Louvre store is in a mall, but it's a pretty prestigious location compared to many other standalone stores. Ultimately, Apple needs to be where they will find a strong concentration of their target audience for that particular store.
Clearly, the Apple Louvre store is going to have more high-end tourists than some standalone Apple Store in a flyover state.
Sometimes the brokens are self inflicted.
Umm…. depends on the mall. Not all malls are ugly brick and mortar constructions. Many are, but not always.
And also you forget the value of "convenience". At my preferred Apple Store, located inside a "mall", there is a Starbucks right next door to the Store, and also a very nice food court above. These conveniences are merely a few feet away from the Apple Store.
Apple Stores don't need to look like an art deco work of art. It serves no purpose.
I'd also venture to guess that the reason you don't notice as many people buying things is because they make that process super easy and discrete. I usually order online and set for in store pickup, and you'd be pretty hard pressed to know I was buying something if you were watching me move about the store when I go to do so. I usually browse around, talk to an employee, browse around some more, discreetly grab my product, and head out.
I live in Los Angeles where there's about 10 Apple stores and most are in malls. I've been to standalones as well. Only difference is there's usually more space to move around in the standalones, but not always.
All we have here in Colorado are stores in malls or strip malls. I have never been to a stand alone store before so I can't compare the two.
Honestly here they really seem about the same. The layout, staff, etc all seem to hold the same level of quality.
Edit: Mine are attached to a mall or strip mall. So that's most likely why I've not noticed a difference. I'll have to travel and find a standalone someday to see.
I don't consider mall stores to be inferior. Quality of service, the services offered, the array of goods, etc. are going to be consistent from store to store. Companies strive to deliver consistent experiences to their customers, regardless of location. An architecturally distinctive store in a prime urban location will certainly attract additional attention, perhaps add an extra air of excitement or elegance to the overall experience. A larger store, with proportionally larger traffic, is likely to offer a wider array of special events, workshops, etc. This is especially true of the flagship locations, which are intended to also attract media attention. But in the end, there's business to be done, and it gets done equally well regardless of location, in my limited experience.
Mall stores are likely to be less distinctive architecturally, maybe their clientele seems less glamorous, the locale more mundane... but perhaps this is just one of those "glass half full/half empty" judgements. Does a person consider something that's less than "special" to be "inferior," or is there room for "average" as well? Generally, "superior" and "inferior" are at the extremes of a bell-shaped curve, with a whole lot of "average" in between. Chain stores, by their nature, will mostly be "average."
What Angela and Tim are overlooking is that it's not so much the room as it is the product/people/feeling. Why are some of our best memories from evenings spent in a random dive bar with good friends or a good friend? I could care less if the table is wood or glass as well as whether or not there were trees in the store. Apple is spending too much time polishing the wrooooong things since Steve passed.
On the other hand it seems that most of the more typical consumers seem to care about those types of things more on some level, and those kinds of things are basically done to attract and appeal to more of the typical consumers as there are many many more of those.
I'm not being a smart alec here but, you may be correct. The same type of consumer may accept the horrible (IMO) steps backward in UI that Jony Ive introduced after 2013 that I detest. To this day, I'm shocked there aren't nearly as many riots and pitchforks and torches raised now against the awful ios7 flat type of interface in iOS and OS as there were 4 years ago against Scott Forestall's heavy skeumorphic UI that was super intuitive and interesting to look at. Maybe style over substance is what consumers really want.
Plenty of that here in forums like this one, but as a whole that represents just a small part of the forum users, and forum users represent a tiny fraction of the overall consumer base (and typically a fairly different one from the typical consumer).
Yeah good point. But I remember the same being true about the numbers in the anti-woodgrain anti-skeumorphic crowd 5 years ago yet it was enough to wag the ship and even inspire Craig Federighi to joke about running out of green felt, in a very rare tip of the cap to consumers by today's Apple after Steve. I guess Jony and Craig were part of the minority then but just unfortunately powerful enough to enact all their "improvements!"
Well, I think that was more of giving something new and different to the masses to get their interest again.