Friday, November 20, 2009

Just can’t contain myself

I am a big fan of The Container Store. I admit that I didn’t know much about the Coppell, Texas-based, 50-store specialty chain until I moved to Denver for a couple of years, and was faced with organizing a new home in short order.

I had spied a Container Store atop a hilly padsite overlooking Park Meadows Mall in south Denver, and decided to give its advertised storage solutions a whirl.

Two hours and hundreds of dollars later, I wheeled my brimming shopping cart to my parked SUV, and transferred the piles of pantry shelves, cleaning tools and bathroom storage racks from cart to car.

That was the first of many visits to The Container Store, as it became my go-to place to tame home and office chaos.

Now that I’m back in Lincoln, Neb., I miss the store -- but am always interested to read about the latest corporate happenings. This week I received a press release promoting some new services and promotions, including “click and pickup” (order online and pick up in-store, a la Best Buy and Wal-Mart), call-ahead curbside pickup (again, think Best Buy), and free shipping for online customers.

For my friends in Chain Store Age’s Manhattan office, they are enjoying a “scan and deliver” service whereby customers of the chain’s two Manhattan stores use a hand-held scanning device to scan bar codes on items selected for purchase, pay, then head home and wait for the items to be delivered home.

The Container Store calls the package of perks its “GoShop Suite of Services.” Because I have some pretty in-depth background on the chain, having interviewed its founders Garrett Boone and Kip Tindell extensively, I know the perks are more than customer-service benefits -- they are smart thinking by a smart retailer that is poised to grow sales even in an economic downturn.

-- Katherine Field

3 comments:

denise lee yohn said...

these are great examples of retail service innovation -- are you listening, department stores?

Jeanne Bliss said...

Katherine,
Share your passion and admiration for The Container Store. They grow and prosper where others are clinging to survival by knowing and understanding customers' lives. And by responding with service and support, not just price slashing. Anyone can price slash. Not many can innovate their way to a bigger piece of the pie- from their customers' point of view.

Jeanne

Steven Swain said...

The Container Store is one of my favorite places to shop. The level of innovation and customer service they bring to their customers is above and beyond what you'd expect and they're able to do this for roughly the same price as their competition.

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