A new Kohl’s 35,000-square-foot concept store — less than half the square footage of the department store retailer’s average footprint — opened on Nov. 4, 2022 in Tacoma, Wash. The retailer is seeking to reach new customers through modern design, more technology and updated, diverse product offerings designed to provide localized experiences.
Throughout the fall, Kohl’s will open additional small-format locations in San Angelo, Texas, Morgantown W.Va. and Lenox, Mass. The Tacoma launch follows the company’s March 2022 announcement of its plans to open 100 small-format stores in new markets and to pilot more than 20 smaller locations. Kohl’s standard stores currently average 80,000 square feet.
The Tacoma location was designed to accommodate consumer demand for a shopping experience that aligns brick-and-mortar models with a technology-centric omnichannel approach that includes:
- Increased use of data to shape its localized experiences;
- QR codes placed alongside product vignettes that allow consumers to shop in-store from their phones; and
- Amazon returns and self-pickup services located in the back of the store.
Kohl’s focused its Tacoma store design on storytelling to encourage product discovery with complementary categories, such as women’s casual apparel and activewear, being merchandised within the same area. Displays and shelving featuring branding placed at eye level are now arranged in a flexible format, allowing associates to easily redesign the layout according to seasonal or customer demands.
The retailer has increased the number of mannequins used throughout the store to inspire customers via storytelling that reflects diverse sizing and skin tones. The Tacoma store also serves as a testing ground for adaptive kid’s mannequins.
Despite its smaller size, the Tacoma concept store also includes a Sephora at Kohl’s shop, as this partnership continues to grow with 400 locations opened in 2022. There are currently 600 Sephora at Kohl’s stores and the retailer plans to unveil another 250 locations in 2023, with the concept eventually rolling out to all Kohl’s stores throughout the U.S.
The Tacoma location includes Discover @ Kohl’s, which features brands new to Kohl’s from emerging, established and diversely owned companies. Discover @ Kohl’s is now featured within 600 locations and highlighted on Kohls.com.