New Dick’s Sporting Goods stores are a game-changer

Dick’s Sporting Goods (DSG

DKS
) presented its new concept “House of Sports” on two sites. It focuses on multi-sport experiences and high customer service. It is likely to be the model for newer stores and an influence on older stores.

The two new stores are both 100,000 square feet in size. One is a one-story store in the Eastville Mall in Victor, NY and the second is a two-story flagship store in Knoxville, Tenn. The stores were scheduled to start in 2018. Toni Roeller, senior vice president of the store environment for Dick’s Sporting Goods, said in an interview, “We started to think about the fact that there is no better time to assess how your brand appears than when you already know that your brand is loved and is an integral part of the customer’s life ”.

WD Partners of Dublin, Ohio helped develop a new strategy for DSG and its athletes. Most importantly, he focused on improving customer engagement in four key areas: experience, service, community, and product.

Management began to think about what it would mean if “we reinvented our physical experience and what we needed to do to meet the expectations of our customers both in-store and online. This was all the more important as many customers do their product research online before entering a store. The store was to provide in-store experiential elements that would provide a product trial and a memorable experience.

The first new addition was a 17,000 square foot turf lot in Victor and a 24,000 square foot turf lot in Knoxville. Each field is surrounded by an Olympic level track. The land can also be used as an ice rink in winter, open to individuals as well as to local teams. In other words, the store can host a number of events.

There are activities to appeal to sports enthusiasts of all kinds. Baseball and softball players can now find batting cages with automatic pitchers to test new bats or hone their swing. There is a 32ft high climbing wall where you can test your climbing ability and assess your strength and balance. There are sports classes and group exercise classes. Naturally, the golf pro shop has a putting green to help golfers improve their skills. It is powered by a TrackMan virtual simulator.

There’s even a full-service repair service that can be seen from the sales area. The repair shop repairs everything – from stringing lacrosse sticks to repairing bikes – and also offers product customization.

According to management, the strategy is to figure out what resonates with customers so that popular features can be integrated into existing DSG stores. It is a learning experience for management. Roeller is quoted: “To me that’s the definition of community, when you move someone from a deal to a relationship.”

VMSD magazine, in its July / August issue, said: Dick’s Sporting Goods is bringing it out of the park with House of Sports. It is a new experiential concept that redefines the notion of service. I couldn’t have said it better.


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