NikeTown London is in the lead with its safe and inclusive in-store experience

Ed Heal
by Ed Heal

Global sportswear and fashion powerhouse, Nike, is setting the new standards for safety and inclusivity with the reopening of its Oxford Street NikeTown store in central London.

In a retail world where hand sanitizer, floor markings, Perspex glass and social distancing has taken centre-stage, it’s become somewhat of a challenge to provide an in-store customer experience that is both safe and welcoming.

But this is a challenge Nike has clearly accepted and achieved – the leading retailer reopened its four-storey flagship store in central London on June 15, and has done a superb job of incorporating two of the most important elements into the customer experience: safety and inclusivity. Admittedly, the brand experienced a slight hiccup on opening day when hundreds of customers ignored social distancing measures and shoved their way inside the store – however, the Nike team did a brilliant job at managing the less than ideal situation, and since then, the brand has excelled in its post-lockdown customer journey.

We recently popped down to the iconic store to see what’s changed after three months of lockdown:

Safe and seamless shopping experiences

Nike has a range of innovative initiatives in play in its NikeTown store designed to keep both its customers and store associates safe.

The NikeTown Express Shop service allows customers to tell a member of staff what product(s) they want and in what size, and the staff member will go and grab the product for them. This saves customers from having to search for items themselves and queue to make purchases, limiting their overall time in-store drastically.

NikeTown Express Shop allows customers to book appointments.

Nike is enabling customers to use this service by simply scanning the QR code at the counter, or by booking the service online using appointment scheduling software.

Customers can select an appointment time that suits them.

Nike customers also have a range of other safety-conscious services at their disposal, such as being able to reserve products through the app and pick them up in-store, order personalized products or use the click and collect check-in service.

And customers requiring a one-to-one shopping service have the option of doing so virtually – Nike offer a virtual video service through Zoom to customers wanting help with training equipment and fashion advice.

Nike offer customers 60 minute “Gear Up Virtually” personalized sessions.

Inclusivity is in-play and on display

Nike has mannequins of all different body types throughout the store.

As a brand, Nike has a long-standing stance on inclusivity. Its mission statement, which has been in place for several years now, is:

To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete* in the world. *If you have a body, you are an athlete.

This statement can be seen across everything the brand does, such as when it launched its Nike Pro Hajib line in 2017 (the first of its kind) for Muslim women. And just by looking at its range of mannequins alone, this statement is abundantly clear – its products are displayed on mannequins of all different body types.

Nike takes in-store safety and social distancing to the next level

The Nike store on Oxford Street has hand washing stations in-store.

Masks, gloves, hand sanitizer and floor markings have become the new expectation when you set foot inside a store, but Nike has taken this a step further.

The retailer has hand washing stations set up around the store to allow customers to stay safe while shopping – a brilliant initiative as it allows customers to feel safe handling products while saving their hand sanitizer for when they need it most.

Great job Nike for creating an engaging and safe customer experience post lockdown – keep up the good work!

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