Bauer Highlights Move Toward Experiential Shopping

Shoppertainment has long been a staple of large malls. Many malls offer roller coasters or ice rinks. The idea of experiential shopping, though, could provide a better approach to build foot traffic. The idea is not new. For example, Bass Pro Shops includes a fishing pond to tryout fishing equipment. Jeep dealers offer an off-road testing ground. Bauer's new footprint feels different though.

The retailer will open eight to 10 stores that will feature a regulation ice rink. Shoppers can take a few shots, crash some boards, and spray ice before buying the equipment. The effort marks Bauer's attempt to get more people interested in ice hockey.

Bauer CEO Kevin Davis supplies the money quote:

We are not opening outlets and selling discounted things, we are opening a apace for consumers to really experience (the brand) and give then a really premium experience, which would be good for all retailers. When kids leave that store more enamored with the Bauer brand, they may buy it at that location or they may go back to their local retailer and search out the brand.

Perhaps more retailers will consider how to incorporate experiential shopping into the store environment to build foot traffic.

A pond for hockey would make a Bauer's store wicked fun.