Rack Room Shoes has unveiled a new store concept.
Located at the Mount Pleasant Towne Centre just outside of Charleston, S.C., the store was designed in collaboration with retail design group CallisonRTKL and integrates digital and service elements while reinforcing certain brand partnerships that are most relevant to the local community.
According to Rack Room, the reimagined store offers designated areas for key categories like the Athletic Shop and Kids Club, which the retailer has added to other stores in recent years. The Athletic Shop showcases an extensive selection of performance running sneakers, while the Kids Club offers a kid-centric experience, complete with a wide selection of products, brands and assortments, Rack Room said.
The retailer is also adding new service elements in the store including self-serve package lockers for in-store pickup and a state-of-the-art digital foot scanner for customer’s looking to find their shoe size.
Rack Room also noted that the store will offer unique colors and prints from Reef, Hey Dude and Asics that are only available at the new location.
Mark Lardie, president and CEO of Rack Room Shoes, said in a statement that he is “excited” to reintroduce customers to this reimagined shopping destination. “Our team invested a great deal of thought and effort into the redesign, and we were excited to share the store with our valued partners and the Mount Pleasant and Charleston communities,” Lardie said.
“We are confident that our innovative store design, combined with our exceptional vendor partnerships, position Rack Room Shoes for continued success in our ever-changing footwear industry,” Lardie added. “The concept is another milestone towards the Deichmann Group’s vision of becoming a global footwear powerhouse.”
To mark the opening, Rack Room Shoes hosted a Partner Day event that brought together brand partners and representatives from parent company, the Deichmann Group, along with the teams responsible for the new store design.
In September, Lardie first teased the new store concept in an interview with FN. “We’re very happy with the current design of our locations, but we know there is more we could be achieving, so we’re working to evolve our stores,” the CEO said at the time.
Lardie noted that Rack Room brought together leaders from multiple departments, including marketing, merchandising, operations and digital for the first time to participate in the development of the retailer’s next stage.
Brian Burnett, EVP and GMM of Rack Room, described the new look to FN in September as “halfway between a revolution and an evolution.” He explained, “It’s challenging — you want someone to walk in and feel like it’s still Rack Room, but you also don’t want them saying, ‘This is just a new coat of paint.’”
In the same interview, Lardie added that Rack Room remains very bullish on the future of brick-and-mortar shopping and aims to continue expanding its presence by adding 3 percent to 5 percent more units annually, with a concentration on the southern U.S. states.
Currently, the Charlotte, N.C.-based company operates more than 520 locations nationwide under the Rack Room Shoes and Off Broadway Shoe Warehouse brands.