Aug 09, 2022
Abercrombie & Fitch (A&F) has launched a new store design – The Getaway – that seeks to make “every day feel as exceptional as the start of a long weekend” for the chain’s young Millennial and Gen Z customers.
The clothing retailer calls the new store design on display at Del Amo Fashion Center in Los Angeles and another outside of Milan, Italy, “a stylish nod to a chic hotel lobby.” The store is focused on elevating the omnichannel shopping experience.
“Abercrombie’s young Millennial and Zillennial customers continue to utilize our stores for a variety of needs—whether it’s discovering new products and trends, picking up online orders, connecting with friends virtually or IRL, figuring out their best fit, or simply enjoying the brand experience ,” said Carey Krug, SVP & head of marketing for Abercrombie brands, in a statement. “Everything from the flow and design elements to the functionality of the spaces was architected to reflect our customer’s ideal experience, whether they’re visiting for a transformative, curated shopping experience or utilizing the store’s omni-hub capabilities.”
The store, according to A&F, is intended to ooze “refinement and relaxation.” The retailer seeks to pull this off with elevated fixtures, wood accent walls and spaces dedicated to A&F’s most popular merchandise categories.
“We translated our customer’s mindset into a real-world immersive experience,” said Joanna Ewing, GVP & head of creative for Abercrombie brands. “Their love for our denim manifested in a dedicated denim studio. The fitting rooms have been optimized with customizable lighting and chic design elements. Their affinity for travel is captured in the store’s hotel lobby-like vibe, complete with a check-in desk. The entire design of these new stores is the unique getaway mindset of our customers brought to life in a way that communicates elevated ease”
A&F went into 2022 expecting big things after reporting in March that its fourth-quarter operating margin reached its highest level in more than a decade.
The retailer’s first-quarter sales growth slowed to a four percent year-over-year increase as rising food and fuel prices made consumers reconsider spending on apparel and other discretionary categories. A&F lowered its earnings forecast for the year as it expects that higher costs will act as a headwind.
CEO Fran Horowitz, in a press release, pledged to “manage expenses tightly” and protect “strategic investments in marketing, technology and our customer experience, which should drive sustained long-term sales growth.”
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Will Abercrombie & Fitch’s new getaway store design resonate with young Millennial and Gen Z consumers? Do you think A&F is in a stronger or weaker position to deal with current market challenges than its rivals?
“Retailers must continuously innovate to get customers off the sofa and into stores. Kudos to A&F for making this effort.”