“The new adidas LDN store is more than a retail experience of the brand, it’s going to be a beacon for us in the city,” Chris Walsh, VP Brand, adidas North Europe.
There would be no denying the continuously growing success of adidas over the years, but 2019 unveiled the most technologically advanced store for the athletic apparel brand. And whilst the Oxford Street flagship features a huge range of men’s, women’s and children’s styles, the product range is not the most impressive element of the store; it is the way these collections have been curated as part of digital, customisable and localised experience.
Appropriately called adidas LDN, this flagship store has been designed to act as a hyper-local hub for consumers; transforming the normal retail experience into a platform for events, artist collabs, activations and customised experiences. Whilst we’ve seen the phrase ‘experiential’ infiltrate design strategies and witnessed many brands failing to achieve this, adidas LDN highlights a desire to regularly update the dynamic in-store experience to reduce any sense of retail fatigue. Even since our visit to the store, the space has been refreshed, meaning that the photographs witnessed here will become obsolete with time.
At the heart of the concept for this store is the balance between digital design installations and technological implementations which have a functional purpose for the consumer. Acknowledging that the phrase ‘digital’ has often led brands towards a store design dotted with digital screens, adidas have chosen to only implement digital solutions which are seen ‘through the lens of the consumer’ and elevate the overall experience. We discuss our some of the impressive digital touchpoints in-store:
BRING IT TO ME
Not only is the store itself designed to be a hyper-local hub for London, it also promotes in-store geolocation tracking for a sleek transition between browse and purchase. Using the adidas app, shoppers can scan products, check if it is in stock and then request that their size is brought to them wherever they may be in-store; a complete eradication of the traditional till experience.
Using the same app, shoppers can scan the QR codes on the ‘hype wall’ to learn more about the latest releases, limited edition drops and adidas events. Most importantly, this information is downloaded directly to your calendar.
Personalisation has been a key trend in retail for some time, with a strong consumer desire to feel part of the creative process. The Base is a huge, interactive floor whereby shoppers can create their own desire feature or get involved with fun interactive challenges. This implementation is a way of ‘gamifying’ the retail experience; another mark of how the adidas LDN store prioritises engagement over mass product sales.
RFID CHANGING ROOMS
Fitting rooms have never been deemed a positive experience, often causing fear in individuals as they head into the awfully lit cramped spaces to try on clothing they want to feel good in. However, adidas LDN strives to create a fitting room experience which exceeds expectations. Ample spaces with interactive changing room mirrors use RFID technology to recognise the product, reveal crucial information and provide the opportunity for shoppers to request different sizes or colours. And even if the regimented sizes are not quite working, an on-site seamstress is available to tweak the product to be entirely personalised to the shopper. As we recognise the negativity associated with fitting rooms, adidas heighten the experience with the use of digital innovation.
It’s not the first time we have witnessed adidas, among other brands, implement a running lab for testing out products; from running leggings to the latest ultraboost trainers. The success of these personalised experiences has seen adidas include this in their LDN hub, with the offering of a 1:1 appointment to discover what products work best for you.
Each of these digital touchpoints are 100% powered by green energy and most of the in-store elements have been created using recycled materials. Since inception, sustainability has been at the heart of adidas and this store is a further representation of how the athletic apparel brand strives to promote a sustainable future. Read more about the sustainability movement and some of the adidas initiatives in our post here.
The adidas LDN store has been designed as a hub of creativity and expresses the brands relationship with the capital. Bespoke LDN product is exclusively sold in-store and the artwork features commissions from London artists, heightening the partnership between a global brand and a localised area.
It would be incorrect not to consider the products as being highly important in-store, but this hub highlights how the apparel creates a narrative across multiple floors; with digital touchpoints along the way to heighten the engagement.
We were impressed by this dedication to hyper-local experiences, transforming the traditional retail experience into something which feels entirely personal to the visitor.