Wired’s Kahney: Apple’s retail stores are genius

“Apple Computer is firing on all cylinders these days, but of all the things contributing to its success, hardly anyone mentions its chain of retail stores. The stores are as important to Apple as the iPod or OS X when it comes to driving the public’s extraordinary interest in the resurgent company — though it’s hard to say which is more important, because they’re interrelated,” Leander Kahney writes for Wired News. “Switching to the Mac is not a decision to be taken lightly, and the Apple store is where this mental transition takes place. Lately, there are lots of people making the switch. Sales of Mac computers are up — despite the ongoing Intel transition — and more than 50 percent of customers at its stores are ‘new to Mac,’ Apple chief Steve Jobs said at Macworld.”

“Consider this: Apple says its stores are now making more than $1 billion in sales per quarter. Just two years ago, the stores were making $1 billion a year — and at that time they were the fastest-growing retail operation in history, beating the previous record holder The Gap to $1 billion annual sales in just three years, according to Ron Johnson, the executive in charge of Apple’s retail operations. The company’s 136 stores now account for about 17 percent of its total revenue… Apple says the stores are attracting up to 10,000 visitors per week each, or 18.1 million visitors a year in total.” Kahney writes. “These are extraordinary figures.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Note: Want a laugh? Check out Channel Marketing Corp’s David Goldstein’s May 2001 Apple Retail Stores prediction, “I give them two years before they’re turning out the lights on a very painful and expensive mistake.” [Thanks to Kahney for reminding us about it in his full article.]

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  1. Don’t go into a Apple Store and you won’t be tempted by expensive toys that don’t have a lot of practical use for most people.

    Surf for porn at your work PC, it’s much cheaper. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  2. And, you can get one of these at any Apple store: starting with the new Intel Power Mac G5 (whatever they call it) and with the introduction of Leopard, Apple has installed some code that is not user accessible that will, after your machine has been on for 24 hours, automatically back up your files, do a full wipe, shut down, restart, and then reinstall virus free versions of the OS (Vista and Leopard or whatever) thus keeping Apple’s record of no virus, no spyware, no invasions of any kind intact. Only problem is the process takes just under 4 hours and you can’t interrupt it. Welcome to the world of Windows, all you guys!

  3. MDN:

    Again, you have failed to appreciate the profound intellect and uncanny prophetic abilities of David Goldstein. Because Apple only received slightly more than 1 billion dollars in profit per quarter, instead of 10 billion dollars, they have failed miserably. Who is generating FUD now?

  4. This just in:

    … has just checked out. While you may fictionalize about the worst possible events to befall Apple (no matter how far fetched), you still have to live in the real world disaster of Windows.

  5. “don’t have a lot of practical use for most people.”

    iLife is exactly what most people are doing, and it’s far better than the cr@pware available for PC. Al Jazzoo, you sound like a real c*ck holster. Why do you come to a Mac enthusiast site to spew such bile. Go do what you do best.

    magic word- boys

    yeah, go fondle boys

  6. bd,

    Read the article again. Edwards quotes Goldstein. Goldstein says of Apple’s retail efforts, “I give them two years before they’re turning out the lights on a very painful and expensive mistake,” not Edwards.

  7. From their inception, the Apple Stores have routinuely been selling to 50 % new to mac users. This is probably why the market share in the US has increased to 4.5 % over the last few years.

    I hope the trend continues. 10-20 % market share will really lower the overhead costs for macs and allow Apple to reduce the price of their macs and give Dell etc a really scare.

    Just look at the iPod. In the past year, Apple have been able to really compete on price because they could get lower costs for parts and manufacturing as a result of higher production runs.

    It sends shivers down my spine what impact this will have on Apple’s share price and profit.

  8. Apple should team up with Starbucks. Then we’d have an Apple Store everywhere!

    Guy: Can I help you?
    Bart: I’d like to get my ears pierced!
    Guy: Better make it quick, kiddo, in five minutes this place is becoming a Starbucks.

    If everyone had a Mac would they still be cool?

  9. This Kahney guy is right. Allowing someone to physically try out something first will make them much more likely to buy it. Apple would not be doing nearly as well if they only had their online store.

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