Will Hudson be more than just a newsstand with a new look?
Travel hub mainstay Hudson is the latest retail chain to rethink its look and feel to meet the needs of contemporary customers.
A revamped store layout being launched in key markets in 2020 will feature digital displays which show localized content controlled by the chain’s corporate team. Through the use of interchangeable modular walls, locations will be able to easily reorganize each store to highlight certain products or implement special seasonal displays.
Brian Quinn, EVP and COO, said in a statement, “Our refreshed design concept will grab customers at the door and draw them all the way into the back of the store — giving us the opportunity to customize each store to make it more enticing to travelers and profitable for our travel-hub partners.”
Hudson is also adding self-check-out stations for greater shopper convenience. In mid-2020, the chain will introduce a new app that will allow travelers to connect to a nearby Hudson store from their smartphone and gather insight on products and promotions.
Despite its major presence across major airports and transport terminals, Hudson is facing down a potential wave of disruption from retailers, cutting-edge tech players and even grocers. For instance, reports late last year indicated Amazon was looking at placing its cashier-free Amazon Go concept in airports, where time is often at a premium for travelers.
In Europe, Ahold Delhaize has been piloting a small, modular Amazon Go-like store location which it recently relocated to Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport, according to Supermarket News.
In fact, innovation at international hubs may be driving U.S. airports to improve their retail experiences. Studies show the quality of U.S. airport retail lags compared to competitive offerings abroad. London’s Heathrow Airport, for instance, boasts personal shopping lounges, over 400 luxury brands and even a Harry Potter store.
In the U.S., commuters in larger cities may soon begin expecting higher-end retail experiences in big train stations during their daily travel. In New York City, the MTA recently announced plans to revamp three Manhattan transit hubs, according to the Wall Street Journal. The planned improvements will bring them up to speed with retail-heavy hubs like Grand Central Terminal.
- Hudson Reveals Reimagined Store Design For 2020 – Hudson Group
- Where will Amazon go with its cashier-free concept? – RetailWire
- Why is the U.S. so bad at airport retailing? – RetailWire
- Ahold Delhaize tests new site for autonomous micro store – Supermarket News
- New York’s MTA Plans Retail Revamp of Highly Trafficked Subway Stations – Wall Street Journal
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Will Hudson succeed in bringing in more customers with its next-generation store? What are today’s travelers looking for in localized content, store layout and services from travel essentials shops such as Hudson?