Monday, November 5, 2007

Cabela's Experience Based Stores

I am totally having a jealous moment over Cabela's coming-soon Lacey, Washington store. For the uninitiated, Cabela's sells hunting and fishing gear, at excellent prices.

Shoppers come from far and wide to shop at Cabelas, many times driving well over 100 miles to visit a Cabela store. The most amazing statistic is that the typical Cabela's customer spends 3.5 hours in the store. Three and a half hours, shopping, in the same store! Even I don't do that at Nordstrom's (which is like a toy store for adult females).

The latest Cabela's store in Lacey Washington will include:
  • Hundreds of mounted animals displayed in dioramas
  • Conservation Mountain, a two story simulated mountain equipped with working waterfalls, a stream and a trout pond
  • A 16,700 gallon walk-through aquarium stocked with fish native to the Northwest
  • A restaurant serving venison bratwurst and smoked elk sandwiches.
This isn't a store. It's an experience.

No wonder people will drive for 100 miles and spent over three hours browsing. The latest store is expecting to have the same annual draw as a Costco or Wal-Mart and generate over $70 million in gross revenue for Cabelas. They will employ 350 full-time and part-time stores.

This Disneyland like store has gotten me thinking - what if Otion had scheduled times that they made soap, every day or once a week, so that you know that if you show up at Otion at X time, on X days someone will be doing something fun and interesting.

We have to test new products and formulations so why not make it an experience that becomes a cult-like phenomenon? It's something that deserves more thought and discussion.