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floors in shoe stores

What considerations does a shoe store consider when picking what type of floor they will have?



By Matt Maldre on Jan 15, 04 | 8:25 am  |   [2144] Hits  |   permalink | archives

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Having worked in specialty stores that sold shoes, I have to say that the type of shoe and the type of floor were not related. The type of floor spoke to the overall design of the store, not to the types of shoes.

However, I do recognize that Foot Locker has basketball court floors, so there probably is something in the point you're trying to make ;^]

Posted by: Tom on Jan 15, 04 | 9:08 am


Like, how does a store decide to go with hard tile or carpet? Is there a psychological distinction when purchasing shoes? i.e. Aldo has hard tiles. Perhaps that speaks to the hard cool hip nature of their designs. While another store that is more down-to-earth would have carpeting... I believe this deems some research...

Posted by: spudart on Jan 15, 04 | 9:15 am


Again, I believe that the type of floor speaks to the overall design of the store, so if the store is trendy, everything about the store is trendy, including the design and, of course, the items sold. If it is a sporting goods store, the overall design of the store is probably sporty, and they sell "sporty" merchandise.

Timberland is about the 4 elements. The Michigan Ave store has concrete floors. The Woodfield store has wood floors. Both floors work for the overall design of the store, and they both sell the same products.

I think you're giving the specific store too much credit in how it is designed. The architects and desigers create a vision before employees are hired and the first shoe hits the sales floor.

Posted by: Tom on Jan 15, 04 | 9:29 am


But maybe people are more likely to buy a shoe if they are on carpet vs. a hard tiled floor. (or vice versa). Maybe the carpet makes the shoe feel softer.

Posted by: spudart on Jan 15, 04 | 10:21 am


side note: If you took your weighing scale and measured yourself on a carpet vs. the hard floor, you'd weight more on the carpet.

Posted by: spudart on Jan 15, 04 | 10:24 am


That's why I only weigh myself on hard surfaces ;^]

You could be right about carpeted stores. I wonder if people feel better trying on shoes in carpeted stores vs. non-carpeted. Though it could be strictly psychological. In my experience people want a shoe that fits properly and feels good.

I believe consumers can tell what is right. The type of floor, while it will let you know how the shoe will perform in that store, doesn't play in the purchasing decision because people think outside the confines of the store and how and where they are going to use the shoes.

If you're buying basketball shoes or another type of speciality shoe [golf, baseball, football, etc], you'd probably want to try them on in a store that has surfaces that are more like the surfaces you would be playing on.

When I bought running shoes, the salesperson had me try them out on the treadmill, running. I thought that made a lot of sense, even though I wasn't going to be running on a treadmill, but you get the idea.

Posted by: Tom on Jan 15, 04 | 12:47 pm


Shoes feel more comfortable on carpet, so it's strange that an awful lot of shoe stores have hard floors. Maybe they're easier to take care of.

Posted by: Angie on Jan 21, 04 | 2:50 pm


I think you have a point there, Angie.

On a tangentially related note, elephants are meant to roam in grasslands, not on concrete, so treading on the concrete flooring at zoos is harmful to their feet. I wonder if the use of concrete flooring at zoos has to do with maintenance (esp. cleanup), for that matter . . . *ponder*

Posted by: crissy on Jan 21, 04 | 3:27 pm


Yeah, grass is harder to maintain than concrete, that's for sure.

Posted by: Angie on Jan 21, 04 | 3:46 pm


I bet elephants would like to live with rubber floors.

Posted by: spudart on Jan 22, 04 | 10:37 am


I bet elephants would prefer to stay in their natural habitat. If there are rubber floors there, then so be it.

Posted by: Tom on Jan 22, 04 | 10:52 am


Actually, elephants like to stay over at unlikelymoose's house. He's got big chairs and toilets.

Posted by: spudart on Jan 22, 04 | 11:14 am


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Hi. I'm Matt Maldre. Every single weekday my blog on spudart.org has a new post with an original idea or discovery. Be sure to stop by daily to see what's happening.



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