Glossier will return to brick-and-mortar with three permanent locations scheduled to open this year. The first will launch in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood on Aug. 20, followed by a new Los Angeles store in the fall and a London location in the winter.
The retailer made the decision to close all its stores in March 2020 due to the pandemic, including flagships in New York and Los Angeles and a number of pop-ups in cities including Seattle, Boston and London.
While the company is an ecommerce-led retailer (80% of pre-pandemic sales came through digital channels), brick-and-mortar is still an important part of Glossier’s ecosystem. The retailer’s physical locations drew more than 1 million visitors in 2019 with an average conversion rate of 50%. Pop-ups in particular excelled, with an average conversion rate of 60%, with Glossier Seattle reaching more than 70%.
The new Seattle flagship will build on Glosser’s ecommerce expertise with an enhanced “Online Pickup” feature that lets customers shop online and pick up their orders in-store through a separate entrance. The retailer also will scale its fulfillment strategy and have more product in physical stores available for shipment, “ultimately meaning faster and more efficient ways for consumers to receive their product, whether they are located in a nearby city or prefer to test in-person and purchase at home,” said Emily Lewis, Head of Retail Operations at Glossier in an interview with Retail TouchPoints.
“Our goal is always to create incredible experiences — physical, product, offline, and digital — for our customers,” Lewis. “As a digital-first company, we take an omnichannel approach to how those touch points live together, including brick-and-mortar stores, as a way for us to scale our connection with our community locally and globally.”
The permanent location will be just four blocks away from the retailer’s original 2019 Seattle pop-up, but at 6,200 square feet it will have 4X the space, making it one of Glossier’s biggest physical experiences to date. Like all Glossier stores, the Seattle flagship is designed with the local area in mind, celebrating the city’s natural landscapes and technology with “futuristic, yet industrial elements.” The space features rolling moss hills, massive boulders and floral and mushroom details throughout the terrarium-like space.