Earlier this month Best Buy opened a new store in Aurora, Colo., specifically for women. No this isn't catering to specific religious zealots, rather the electronics superstore thinks that since women make the majority of purchasing decisions they should have a place that's designed specifically for them.
Forty local female customers and the company's Women's Leadership Forum helped design the new store, which dumped the chain's typical warehouse-style blue interiors and metal shelving, and replaced it by wood paneling, earth tone carpets, and skylights for natural lighting. The new store features electronics working together in homelike settings, "home theater" has been renamed "family room," family-friendly restrooms were installed, and race car-shaped shopping carts were added (sounds like McDonald's consulted on this as well).
We've looked at how electronics companies are trying to target women in the past, and we think this is just another misstep, what do you think?
More ranting after the jump...
Why do companies insist on looking at women as creatures from Venus? We're not that different from men in terms of what we expect during a shopping experience. For example, one of the changes Best Buy for its femme store is, "a new emphasis on making eye contact with customers...[via Springwise]" Um, we're pretty sure anyone, lady or dude, would appreciate being treated like a human being and looked in the eye. Wood paneling and earth tone carpets sounds like a pretty universal as well. Sure, we're glad they didn't cover the place with Pepto pink paint and glitter, but we just don't understand the desire to create spaces catered to the sexes. Why not just design a store that's enjoyable by all? Do men really enjoy the cold warehouse feel of current Best Buys?