The new trend in several of the major department stores has been creating an off-price retailer under their name. Macy’s has recently taken the opportunity to hop on the bandwagon with the announcement of opening four off-price stores in the New York area in the fall. The new Macy’s chain will be called Macy’s Backstage and they feel as though they will succeed because they already have been operating the Bloomingdale’s outlet stores.
Macy’s said that turning to an off-price store would be inevitable because their in-store sales has been on a decline and their competitors are becoming Nordstrom Rack, Saks Off Fifth and even TJ Maxx. Macy’s believes that opening in the New York area is a good move for them because they already have a strong presence and know the demographic. A Business Professor at Columbia University comments that “Macy’s may have as many as a couple hundred stores that they ultimately have to close, that have increasingly lost their productivity. The C and D mall are increasingly problematic.” He also commented on the possibility of turning some of their struggling stores into off- price in the hopes that it will bring business back up.
The very first Macy’s Backstage stores are set to open in Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn, Queens Place in Queens and New Hyde Park and Huntington both located on Long Island. The average store size will be around 30,000 square feet, a size that will qualify Macy’s for many locations. These stores will sell women’s, men’s, children’s, shoes, accessories, houseware, home textiles, intimate apparel and jewelry. Other features of Macy’s Backstage will be free Wi-Fi and a café. Macy’s plans to sell merchandise that are clearance in regular Macy’s stores as well as have some special buys from certain brands and the merchandise well sell anywhere from a 20-80 percent discount. Macy’s believes that going off-price will significantly drive and improve sales.