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Dell to take a second stab at retail

post #1 of 56
Thread Starter 
As it struggles to maintain its lead as the number one personal computer marker, Apple Computer rival Dell Inc. plans to once again dabble in the retail business when it launches two stores at shopping centers later this year.

Though unlike Apple, which stocks products on-hand for customers to carry out after purchase, Dell will remain true to its direct model by having shoppers order products online for later delivery, according to Statesman.com.

The Round Rock, Texas-based Windows PC maker plans to open its first location at the NorthPark Center in Dallas, Texas in late summer and followup with a store at the massive Palisades Center in West Nyack, New York in the fall.

The store will reportedly span about 3,000 square feet and face-off against Apple retail stores which currently operate out of both shopping plazas.

For Dell, this won't be the first time it has dipped its toes into the retail arena. About three years ago, the company ended an experiment with small outlets at a handful of Sears department stores.

According to Statesman, the company currently operates 161 kiosks at malls across the United States, where customers can preview a selection of its products and place orders.

The two full-size stores, which Dell claims will be an extension of its kiosks model, are considered to be part of a pilot program aimed at displaying more products and systems for customers. They will reportedly feature a home theater display designed around a personal computer as well as systems designed specifically for kids.

According to Statesman, the stores will also sell Dell services, such as home network installation. However, the company is still "working out how to handle tech support questions that existing customers might bring to the store."

The success of Apple's retail strategy has largely been attributed to the customer support offered through its Genius Bars, which are installed as a centerpiece in each of the company's 147 locations world-wide. There, trained staffers answer questions, offer solutions, handle repairs and provide technical and creative support on a one-on-one basis with Mac and iPod users.

Apple's latest retail store opened this past weekend in Midtown Manhattan to a crowd of over 3000 enthused shoppers.
post #2 of 56
I can see it now ....

post #3 of 56
Ooooh, nice picture. Except if it were Dell's giant cube it would be made out of Plexiglas and two by fours.

I wonder if the Dell stores will be laid out as nicely as their website.

That way they could have the same systems for different prices at different places in the store.

At any rate, I thought there was something of a consensus that one of the big problems with the Gateway stores was not having product in stock that you could walk out with.

I think when people are shopping at brick and mortar, they want the psychological payoff of taking home their new toy.

If it's just about ordering something on the internet, you can do that at home-- although I suppose people might drop by to see something "in person" they were going to buy anyway .
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post #4 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by addabox
Ooooh, nice picture. Except if it were Dell's giant cube it would be made out of Plexiglas and two by fours.



Quote:
Originally posted by addabox
I think when people are shopping at brick and mortar, they want the psychological payoff of taking home their new toy.

Absolutely. This has to be the stupidest idea ever. I mean...I walk into a Dell store...fiddle around...decide to buy one...and then the nice fellow smiles and says "Thanks, that'll be delivered to your house in 3-4 days."

Whack!
post #5 of 56
i think this will fail, as all other pc attempts at the retail thing have. the pc manufacturers neglect to realize that apple has a magic element that they never will-- passionate users. pc people and mac people are two different breeds. most of us get fucking excited about every damn thing that happens in the apple world, and keep up on apple news daily. does anyone really bother to give a shit what dell does on a day-to-day basis? maybe those invested in it, but doubtfully anyone that would be a potential retail customer. apple has a following that is so valuable, yet unmatchable... simply building a stupid store in a mall isn't going to create a pc equivalent.
post #6 of 56
Woohoo!! All right now, Who's gonna fly to Dallas to camp out and be the first in line for the grand opening?
post #7 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by Chris Cuilla




Absolutely. This has to be the stupidest idea ever. I mean...I walk into a Dell store...fiddle around...decide to buy one...and then the nice fellow smiles and says "Thanks, that'll be delivered to your house in 3-4 days."

Whack!

I walk into a Dell store...fiddle around...decide to buy one...and then the nice fellow smiles and says "Thanks, that'll be delivered to your house in 3-4 days."

Or you can go to the Apple Store downstairs and get a Macbook and take it home right now!
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As sure as the Bible is missing books
George Bush is missing sense
and violence breeds more violence
But this ain't really about Hussein
Regime change
Crashing Airplanes
or buildings falling in flames
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post #8 of 56
I did not know Dell and Apple are "rivals"...
post #9 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by iPickle06
I did not know Dell and Apple are "rivals"...

... well... they're not "Allies"...
post #10 of 56
Quote:
According to Statesman, the company currently operates 161 kiosks at malls across the United States, where customers can preview a selection of its products and place orders.

Thats good, because i can never figure out what they are selling by their website... i see one for $400 another for $1500 -- its a joke and a mess. Im glad their making the start decision and fixing website inconsistency by opening a series of retail stores to show the public their products... wait... what?
post #11 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by iPickle06
I did not know Dell and Apple are "rivals"...

They are, when you get down to it, more rivals tha Apple and Microsoft are. Apple considers itself first and foremost a hardware company. MS doesn't compete in that space. And now that IntelMacs can boot Windows, MS has even less reason to be "concerned" or "against" Apple and the Mac platform.

Nope, Dell is an Apple rivl, now that you can buy a Mac that run OS X and Windows XP.
post #12 of 56
there won't be a line outside of Dell's store...
maybe a few alienware 'neurds' but that's it...and an IT guy with nothing better to do...
this is a joke.
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post #13 of 56
Why would anyone in their right mind go to a dell store so they can order products online?

Do they expect mom and pop to come in, order and pay for a new computer and wait for it to be delivered? With shipping charges?

Will you have to order a Dell pukebox and shitty, er, I mean a dell Jukebox and Ditty as well or will they stock those in the store. The great thing about the Apple Stores and what makes it worth traveling to if you leave a distance away from it is that you can come home with something if you want to.

I can go to an Apple store and pick up a complete system, DV camera, digital camera, iPod and lots of other goodies and bring them home the same day.

What will Dell offer to draw the customers in?
post #14 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by mike12309
[B]

Thats good, because i can never figure out what they are selling by their website... i see one for $400 another for $1500 -- its a joke and a mess. Im glad their making the start decision and fixing website inconsistency by opening a series of retail stores to show the public their products... wait... what?

Let us hope they staff it with people that actually know what they are talking about. Every time that I have been to Staples in recent years I have had to call friends on my cell phone to find out where the products are as the salespeople have no idea what is in their own stores. I feel sorry for anyone who actually buys a computer from them.
post #15 of 56
So you can order the same cheap crap you get on-line, except now you spend $5 on gas to do it in person? Great business idea.
post #16 of 56
Hmmm......

I wonder if Dell is making a big mistake by putting their stores directly across from existing Apple locations.

I could kind of imagine someone popping into the Dell store, finding out that you can't actually buy anything, then checking out the Apple store right across the way in a state of highly susceptible consumerus interuptus and consummating the act.
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post #17 of 56
I can see it helping a bit. When I go to an Apple store it's to check out the merchandise firsthand. I'd never buy directly from Apple because it's more expensive and I have to pay a buttload of taxes compared to online where you often get free shipping, at least some savings and ocassionally some freebie, however small.

While at the 5th Avenue opening, I fooled around with the MacBooks. Not only did it change my mind about a laptop purchase -- originally, I was less than 50/50 about buying portables, and almost deadset against the Black version given the price premium for the minor cosmetics -- but I was able to convince a friend and co-worker to maybe finally buy her first Mac.

If Dell can convince a few confused customers to come in and make a final decision, this can be a profitable move. I know of co-workers that gave up on an employee discount purchase because they couldn't understand what they could get from the catalog or even at the online store.
post #18 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by ronn
If Dell can convince a few confused customers to come in and make a final decision, this can be a profitable move.

You are forgetting something - Dell's products are not about "the user experience" like Apple. They are commodity PCs sold cheap to cheap people and corporations. Their sales will NOT benefit by people seeing them in person, because conceptually, that has never been why people buy them.

On the other hand, Apple is about the experience, and seeing and using their products. Dell is totally mixed up and will be bankrupt within a year. Their stock should be trading at pennies right now relative to the valuation Apple's stock is unfortunately at.

What Dell is doing is like Apple inventing the iPod and thinking that only selling it online is a smart strategy.
post #19 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by McHuman
Dell is totally mixed up and will be bankrupt within a year.

Except Apple, the rest of the PC industry (Microsoft, Dell, etc) all seem like they are phoning it in. How could they be such big screw ups, when they have so much money at their disposal to spend on R&D?
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post #20 of 56
Ha ha!!

Dumb Dell Model.... Just like their computers!



"Think Alike... BE Different!"
never say never!
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post #21 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by McHuman
Dell is totally mixed up and will be bankrupt within a year. Their stock should be trading at pennies right now relative to the valuation Apple's stock is unfortunately at.

\\\\

I don't think so. People are being a little quick to throw dirt on Dell. Don't be surprised to see the revenge of the empire in a year or two.
post #22 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by e1618978
How could they be such big screw ups, when they have so much money at their disposal to spend on R&D?

OK guys, reality check. If they have so much money, then they are obviously not such big screw-ups--it's just a different business model. Dell isn't going out of business any time soon, their profits dwarf Apple's. Yes Apple is looking good and on the rise, but please put the kool-aid down.
post #23 of 56
The thing that I love about the Apple Stores (even if I am a bitter ex Apple Store employee) is that all of their lifestyle segments are portioned in different segments of the store and they market each segment beautifully.

The jest of the comments I have gotten and have read from everyone is they are clean, well layed out stores and very eye catching. Since the return of Steve Jobs, this has been part of their business model so it is only in their blood that the stores would be the same way.

Dell on the other-hand does not have the same set of values and there for I think there stores will reflect as such.
post #24 of 56
Quote:
a bitter ex Apple Store employee

Is there ANY other kind?
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post #25 of 56
I think it's great. The desperation I have seen from the PC world. Dell frantically making the effort to clone Apple's retail marketing, M$'s Vista clone of OSX, Creative's clone of the ipod, M$'s clone of the ilife suite, HP, Dell, Compaq, and many other's clone of the "Titainium" powerbook look, The list goes on and on..... They all hate Apple, but yet they strive to become just like them. I believe that most everyone, weather they admit it now or not, see's the writting on the wall. I welcome these winds of change. So prepare for the storm! The Winds of Change are a blowing!
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post #26 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by ReCompile
I think it's great. The desperation I have seen from the PC world. Dell frantically making the effort to clone Apple's retail marketing, M$'s Vista clone of OSX, Creative's clone of the ipod, M$'s clone of the ilife suite, HP, Dell, Compaq, and many other's clone of the "Titainium" powerbook look, The list goes on and on..... They all hate Apple, but yet they strive to become just like them. I believe that most everyone, weather they admit it now or not, see's the writting on the wall. I welcome these winds of change. So prepare for the storm! The Winds of Change are a blowing!

Get real. Who needs an R&D budget when you've got Apple? Apple rocks, that's why consumers love them. But don't expect a storm, just expect a respectable market share and more software options.
post #27 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by iPickle06
I did not know Dell and Apple are "rivals"...

Ever heard of the education market?
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post #28 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by AppleInsider
However, the company is still "working out how to handle tech support questions that existing customers might bring to the store."


There will be line ups, people with problems with their Dells. Looking for the Dell Einstein Bar.
post #29 of 56
They've been dabbling with something similar up here in Canada, only the "stores" are oversized kiosks. Basically they just have a bunch of stuff on display in the middle of a mall at a semi-permanent display for customers to look at, but the orders still need to be entered online (by the salesman) for later delivery.
post #30 of 56
I remember when Gateway first open stores here in NYC. You also couldn't buy anything. That was a very bad idea. People walk out frustrated. By the time they realised their mistake it was too late. Their other mistakes with theor stores, added to that, doomed them.

IBM also had stores where nothing could be bought. They closed them as well.

I guess they really shouldn't be called stores. They really are showrooms.
post #31 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by Chagi
They've been dabbling with something similar up here in Canada, only the "stores" are oversized kiosks. Basically they just have a bunch of stuff on display in the middle of a mall at a semi-permanent display for customers to look at, but the orders still need to be entered online (by the salesman) for later delivery.

i see it here too in Atlanta, GA.

i just dont understand why Dell wants to stick to its "online order" model. it is indeed pretty waste of time, space, money, manpower, gas...just about everything
post #32 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by futuretheory9
OK guys, reality check. If they have so much money, then they are obviously not such big screw-ups--it's just a different business model. Dell isn't going out of business any time soon, their profits dwarf Apple's. Yes Apple is looking good and on the rise, but please put the kool-aid down.

Last 12 months:

Apple earned 2.39 billion
Dell earned 4.84 billion

I don't think that qualifies as "dwarfs". Apple's Revenue growth is 34%, and Dell's is 12% - so I think that the difference will shrink also.

Dell has big market share, but low margins.
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post #33 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by iPickle06
I did not know Dell and Apple are "rivals"...

As much as the Cubs and Packers are. They may not exactly like each other, but they're not in the same market.
post #34 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by ReCompile
I think it's great. The desperation I have seen from the PC world.

I think its more Dell than the PC world. Yes Dell is loosing marketshare, but most of these users are going to HP, Emachines, or Gateway and not Apple. The difference, while you can have HPs or Gateways custom ordered, you can also go to your local store and pick one off the shelf. With Dell you have to trust their company and a lot of people don't anymore. They would be best to copy Apple's lead and have mall stores with pre-configured Machines.
post #35 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by iPickle06
i just dont understand why Dell wants to stick to its "online order" model.

I can think of one reason. Unlike Apple, they have too many options to just sell to the general public. When I say options I am talking about three OSes (XP Home, Pro, Media Center) and five office suites (MS Works, WordPerfect Office, MS Office Basic, two MS Office Small Business editions, one with Access and one without).
post #36 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by troberts
I can think of one reason. Unlike Apple, they have too many options to just sell to the general public. When I say options I am talking about three OSes (XP Home, Pro, Media Center) and five office suites (MS Works, WordPerfect Office, MS Office Basic, two MS Office Small Business editions, one with Access and one without).

Dell has the same number of options HP and Gateway have. Besides, XP home is rarely used anymore. They also have dedicated configurations for the catalog. Why don't they then? Same reason beige Apple didn't start selling BTO machines, they're stuck in their ways.
post #37 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by e1618978
Last 12 months:

Apple earned 2.39 billion
Dell earned 4.84 billion


According to Apple...
Apple announced second quarter financial results, with revenue of $4.36 billion and a net profit of $410 million

Want to try your "facts" again?
post #38 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by BushHater
According to Apple...
Apple announced second quarter financial results, with revenue of $4.36 billion and a net profit of $410 million

Want to try your "facts" again?

Ah, you are likely speaking of profit rather than revenue. The reason why "profit" is a better term than "earned". Less confusing for the average Joe.
post #39 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by BushHater
According to Apple...
Apple announced second quarter financial results, with revenue of $4.36 billion and a net profit of $410 million

Want to try your "facts" again?

You do realise that a year has 4 quarters, don't you?

Anyway, here is where I got the info (EBITDA (ttm) - means Earnings before Income tax, trailing 12 months) -

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/ks?s=AAPL
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post #40 of 56
Quote:
Originally posted by futuretheory9
OK guys, reality check. If they have so much money, then they are obviously not such big screw-ups--it's just a different business model. Dell isn't going out of business any time soon, their profits dwarf Apple's. Yes Apple is looking good and on the rise, but please put the kool-aid down.

No, Dell has greater cash flow, but not greater profits. Looks like Apple is twice as profitable as Dell.

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GOA

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

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