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Brief Published: 17 Aug 2012

Macy’s Unveils World’s Largest Shoe Floor


US department store Macy’s newly expanded shoe floor in its Herald Square location, New York, has overtaken Selfridges in London to become the world’s biggest retail space dedicated to footwear. Boasting a 50% increase to 39,000 sq ft, it will now hold around 280,000 styles.

High-profile US designers such as Stuart Weitzman and Michael Kors have their own dedicated areas, alongside a section for fashion-forward “impulse labels”, including Dolce Vita and Vince Camuto. There is also a sports shoe zone featuring Nike, Adidas, Converse and Keds. The store reportedly plans to expand the offering even further in the near future.

Macy’s sales associates will be equipped with iPads to facilitate non-cash transactions without returning to a till point and also to communicate directly with the stockroom. See our report Super Service in the Retail Sector for more on how technology is being used to orchestrate smoother in-store service.

When Macy’s chief executive Terry Lundgren announced the $400m facelift back in November 2011, he said that the shoe department was key to customer loyalty, stating: "The most direct route to a woman's heart is often through shoes." A stereotype, perhaps, but Macy’s isn’t the only US department store to make footwear a key retail focus.

Last month, Barney’s debuted a new fifth-floor shoe salon at its Madison Avenue flagship, increasing the square footage devoted to women’s shoes by 58% (22,000 sq ft). Meanwhile, Saks Fifth Avenue also hit the headlines earlier this year with a footwear department so big (32,150 sq ft) that the space accrued its own postcode – aptly named 10022-SHOE.

For more on department store luxury footwear retailing, see our report: The Selfridges Effect.