Interview: How Luxury Shoe Brand M.Gemi Uses A Hudson Yards Store To Build Lifetime Customer Relationships
Following the recent opening of a brand new permanent retail space in New York's Hudson Yards development, M.Gemi co-founder Cheryl Kaplan tells PSFK how to build a better customer experience
Direct-to-consumer retail is becoming increasingly mainstream, as more digitally native brands move from online to off with brick-and-mortar flagships, popups and showrooms. Since its arrival in 2014, footwear startup M.Gemi has become one of the most notable DTC brands on the scene. As footwear presents its set of unique challenges related to fit—with many online retailers fielding untold returns—the category impels physical retail experiences.
M.Gemi has pioneered the showroom model, in which a store avoids issues of inventory management by offering in-store try-on with ship-to-home service. This offers high-touch retail experiences in an environment that allows customers to test and get to know the brand, making them more likely to become ecommerce customers in the future. In its first permanent New York City space, M.Gemi is among the DTC retailers setting up camp at Hudson Yards' “Floor of Discovery,” a level of the new lifestyle and retail complex dedicated to brands born online.