Is a Third Nordstrom Too Much of a Good Thing?
By George Anderson
Nordstrom has done very well catering to upscale shoppers with its two stores in the Atlanta market, but at least one industry veteran thinks the chain is making a mistake opening a third location.
Bill Clarke, who recently ran Ernst & Young’s national retail consulting practice, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that the retailer’s newest location in Phipps may be one store too many. “I don’t think Atlanta can handle that many Nordstrom stores,” he said. “I think that if they had come into Atlanta and put one store in Phipps, that would be a good thing. But too much of a good thing is not a good thing.”
The newest store is located less than seven miles from one existing unit and 30 miles from the other. It is in a location that formerly housed a Lord & Taylor. The 135,000-square-foot unit is the smallest of the three Atlanta-area Nordstrom stores.
Nordstrom spokesperson Jennifer Willey said the chain adopted a more “boutique-y” look for the Phipps store but that the relatively small size of the store shouldn’t be an issue for the chain’s customers.
Vicki Price, manager of the Phipps locations, thinks there are enough things different about her store to make it successful. The store will be the exclusive seller of women’s shoes designed by Michael Kors and Vera Wang as well as clothing lines by Escada and Burberry Prorsum.
Moderator’s Comment: What do you see as the challenges and opportunities for Nordstrom as it continues expanding in Georgia and elsewhere?
Vicki Price is confident her store will be successful because the store employees will listen to customers and share their feedback with the company’s regional
buying group. –
George Anderson – Moderator