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Wayfair’s first large-format store to open next week

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Wayfair’s first large-format store will open its doors to the public next week.

The store, located in Wilmette, Illinois, not far from Chicago, will officially open up shop once the online home goods retailer holds a grand opening for it on the morning of May 23.

The opening will come roughly a month after Wayfair first announced its launch date. The company already has some physical locations for other brands it owns.

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The retailer said its first large-format Wayfair store will sprawl some 150,000 square feet.

The store’s grand opening is scheduled for May 23. (Wayfair)

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“Depending on what purchase someone’s making, they may prefer the in-store experience and getting to work with an associate. Or they may want to discuss financing or want design help, and we can provide all of those experiences,” CEO Niraj Shah told CNBC. “We provide them online as well, but sometimes, in-store can be either more pleasurable or more effective.”

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
W WAYFAIR INC. 71.06 -0.22 -0.31%

Wayfair said the store will contain furniture, decor, houseware and a slew of other types of items “for any style space or budget.”

The Porch

A look at onsite restaurant The Porch. (Wayfair)

It will also house The Porch, a cafe that will offer both inside and outdoor seating options for customers, according to Nation’s Restaurant News.

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Wayfair enlisted singer and talk show host Kelly Clarkson to promote the soon-to-open store in a late April Instagram video.

Earlier this month, Shah told investors and analysts tuned into Wayfair’s first-quarter earnings call that the company believed the size of the Wilmette store “allows us to take the breadth and depth of what Wayfair represents and have it come to life.” 

He also explained the reason Wayfair was “only launching a couple stores for each of our brands and then iterating to make sure that we really dial it in before we then scale” was so that the retailer can “make sure that the unit economics work the way we expect, that the customer loyalty that it engenders and creates, which would be both online, offline, works the way that we would expect, etc.”

As of the end of March, the company reported it had 22.3 million active customers who had bought something from its website in the last 12 months.

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