Saturday, October 15, 2011

I Took a Gamble & Nordstrom Won

Today, at the Flagship store of Nordstrom in Seattle, Washington, footwear designer Vince Camuto debuted his new shoe designs and launched his apparel line. People gathered to welcome & honor the luxe designer with a small party detailed to the nines. Models, music, swag and savory treats were all on the agenda and I received Insider information that the designers new line was an absolute hit with it’s slightly affordable price point and fun was had by all today. Reserve sales were taken weeks far in advance for specialty pieces in the Vince Camuto line including these fabulous leather Brendan boots seen here below.

Now truth be told, Nordstrom has not been the shopping experience that I had heard it would be. I’ve visited several other Nordstrom locations but they could all take a lesson from the Seattle Flagship. On previous shopping trips to other locations, I've encountered the elusive sales person & standoffish behavior that I just don’t stand for when shopping anywhere. Neither should you. There are too many other places to go. A good brand name can be completely ruined by awful customer service.

Something of note here: Isn’t it interesting how fast purchases are debited yet returns can take days? Same swiping action and triple the reaction time. I don’t get it.


I was there yesterday in one of those mad dash panic shopping trips where the only thing that rivaled how fast I was moving was how quickly the amounts were swiped from my account . I was in very desperate need of a pair of simple black boots for an event that night. Thankfully, the shoe department at this location worked like one of the most sophisticated and enticing casinos I’ve ever been too. The neat and clean shoe displays invite me to join in on the shopping without getting too lost. This is a sweet sales operation where the customer is taken care of with the utmost sophistication from introduction to the final sale.

We are all the players in the shopping game searching for fashion fortunes.

There was an overseer of the entire production who seemlessly paired eager shopper, me, with savvy salesperson in my case, an Allstar from the Nordstrom team. Interestingly enough Johan Nordstrom had humble beginnings and began the store as a shoe retailer. I’ve sold shoes before and let me assure you that it’s a marginally tough sale and I was, unfortunately, never referred to as an Allstar. (I wish I had been called that because I am one.) But seriously, this sales strata is a great motivating tactic used by Nordstrom, widely recognized in the retail industry and he lived up to every bit of his status.

The Nordstrom Allstar sales wiz Roger Russaw very graciously assisted by not only allowing me to veto pairs before he could even get the horrid things out of the box, but this lovely pair was exactly what I needed so I purchased my pair. These beauties were available for pre-sale only but I walked out the door with them the day before everyone else even could. This is not being bragadocious. This is old school treatment and I love it. There are some great mini perks to writing and if I am going to shell out my hard earned time & money, I better get some first class service to go with it. We all should. The highly professional staff at Nordstrom are aware of this. They know the brands they are selling and are fully aware of who their customers are and seriously aim to please them. They identified with my shopping dilemma, saw my styling urgency & delivered me the designer product that I needed. I am a Nordstrom customer forever after this.

It is extremely difficult to get service like this anymore anywhere these days. All of the other Nordstrom stores, and every store, for that matter could learn a lesson here in top notch customer service. While my son patiently played on his iPhone, I tried on 3 pair, vetoed 2, and had my purchases ready within 10 minutes. And look at this packaging. Sometimes it’s just all about presentation but in this case, they are so comfortable too! As Roger Russaw said it, “This is the type of simple, classic boot that can pair with anything.” Could he have said it any better? This is why he is a Nordstrom Allstar, they win & I am now a Nordstrom fan. Happy Shopping!

I did do some Inside work and found out that the entire staff is highly trained in all things Nordstrom and works incredibly hard to create the amazing shopping experience that I had yesterday. Think in depth brand knowledge, a real passion for style & amazing people skills when you imagine a Nordstrom salesperson. They pride themselves on the first class experience they provide which I feel may only be rivaled by my beloved Saks Fifth Avenue.