Overstaffed and overstocked is the mantra of shoe retailers in the Bay Area as they set high expectations for store traffic ahead of Super Bowl 50 on Sunday at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif.
“We have everyone on our staff working this weekend,” Jamael Savage, store manager at contemporary footwear and-apparel retailer Undefeated in San Francisco, told Footwear News. “We have a Nike pop-up in the store with the whole Super Bowl collection in black and gold, [including the] Nike letterman Super Bowl jacket, which was just released today. We’re expecting a lot of customers, since we’re one of only a few retailers in San Francisco to have it.”
In January, Nike announced that it would celebrate the NFL Super Bowl’s 50th anniversary by launching two new collections — the Super Bowl 50 Nike Gold Collection and the Super Bowl 50 Nike Speed Destroyed Collection.
Savage said the brand promised to blast social promotions for the collections Thursday, which he expects to activate Bay Area shoppers.
Although his store does not carry fan gear, Sean Larson, assistant footwear manager at specialty running shop Fleet Feet, said he has already seen an uptick in traffic during the past week and plans to maximize the spike.
“We don’t have any fan gear specifically, but we’ve been highlighting any merchandise that is Carolina blue or Denver orange from some of the vendors we carry, like Nike, Under Armour and Patagonia,” Larson said. “We’ve definitely had fans who are going to the game come in looking for those colors.”
Larson said Fleet Feet, which has two locations in the Bay Area, has also organized a special run to engage locals and tourists seeking to participate in Super Bowl mania.
“On Saturday morning, we’re leading a ‘Show Your Team’s Color’ five-mile run from our new location on 4th and Mission Street downtown,” Larson said. “We’re encouraging people to wear their favorite team’s colors as we take them on a run to some of the Super Bowl structures set up around the city. When the runners come back, we’ll have cupcakes and coffee.”
Logan Murphy, manager at hipster-inspired footwear store Shoe Biz in San Francisco, said he hasn’t seen store traffic accelerate just yet, but he has pulled out all the stops, calling in extra staff and stocking up on new product in anticipation of a mega jolt in the next day or two.
“I haven’t seen the extra traffic yet, but I’m ready for it,” Murphy said. “We’re not doing any special promotions for the Super Bowl, but we’re hoping to sell our seasonal items and boots to whoever comes in this weekend.”
Similarly, Melanie Dias, store manager at Footwear Etc., about five miles from Levi’s Stadium, said she’s bracing for an influx of customers.
“We’re in sale mode right now, so we’re hoping we can [take advantage] of the extra customers this weekend,” Dias said. “We have specialty Super Bowl socks for the event — hopefully we’ll sell a bunch of those. We haven’t had too many people come in asking for [Super Bowl gear] yet, but we’re definitely hoping for more traffic on Friday and Saturday.”