Inside Nordstrom's product strategy for its first men's store
To figure out what to sell — and what not to sell — in Nordstrom’s first standalone men’s store and first New York store, EVP of merchandising Paige Thomas looked at the data.
“New York is our biggest online market, and so that was the customer data we were working with. We used that data when we thought about brands we weren’t going to carry or absolutely needed to,” said Thomas. “We said, ‘Okay, here are the top 10 brands that are already in demand by customers we have a relationship with in the market; here are the brands that are on the cusp of really taking off; here’s what doesn’t perform.’ And that drove our decision making.”
At the new Nordstrom Men’s store, which opens Thursday in Manhattan, customers will find an assortment that focuses heavily on streetwear, featuring an exclusive partnership with sneaker reseller Stadium Goods, fashion-forward international brands like Gosha Rubchinskiy and made-to-order suits. The emphasis is on brands that have limited distribution in the U.S. For a widely available brand like Hugo Boss, which is one of the site’s top 10 menswear brands, the company worked with the brand’s designers to develop exclusive product that would align well with the New York men’s customer. (Brands without a big global footprint, like Tommy Bahama, aren’t included in the New York store.)
“The challenge was: How do we show up differently?” said Thomas. “We’ve worked closely with these brands to make sure what we were offering was something that couldn’t really be found anywhere else.”
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