John Lewis rethinks department stores for omnichannel age

John Lewis rethinks department stores for omnichannel age

The modern day department store is a place to shop, do and learn under one roof, according to Paula Nickolds, Managing Director at John Lewis.

Nickolds was speaking ahead of the retailer opening its 50th shop tomorrow, at White City, Westfield London. This includes the first fully immersive Apple Smart Home experience in a retail space in Europe. Using the Apple Home app and Siri as their home assistant, visitors will be able to control smart devices from lighting to thermostats, windows to home monitoring and security in three areas - entrance, bedroom and lounge.

Meanwhile, the shop's 500 Partners have been sent to theatre training run by the National Theatre to help them, “really engage customers and provide outstanding customer service.” And personal stylists have been trained at the London College of Style and by stylist and former Vogue Fashion Director, Lucinda Chambers.

“Retail is changing but today's department shop is as relevant as it ever has been in responding to the needs of our customers,” says Nickolds. “This shop demonstrates our latest thinking on how the department store can be a place in which you can shop, do and learn in a way you haven't been able to before. We're bringing to West London a new level of personalised, curated shopping which until now has been the preserve of boutique shops.”

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