Dick's House of Sport

Alpha8472
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Dick's House of Sport

Post by Alpha8472 »

Dick's Sporting Goods is opening a new concept called Dick's House of Sport where you can "connect and play." It will offer a "hands on experience, " with a rock climbing wall, high tech batting cage, an outdoor turf field and a running track. There will be an ice skating rink in the winter.

There will also be a "House of Cleats," that will seasonally rotate product.

https://chainstoreage.com/dicks-sportin ... door-track
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Re: Dick's House of Sport

Post by Super S »

It almost looks as they are trying the "destination store" concept. But with many locations, they become less of a destination as time goes on. Cabela's comes to mind, where they had large, elaborate features in their stores. As they added more locations, they have scaled this back somewhat including making stores smaller.

Dick's doesn't really stand out to me as anything special. But they seem to be doing well enough to continue adding stores around the Pacific Northwest as well. Not sure if some elements of this would work in remodels of mall-based stores, but the rock wall could work in some existing multi-level stores.
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Re: Dick's House of Sport

Post by pseudo3d »

I was thinking more along the lines of Galyan's, which had all these features, and went away after Dick's purchased the chain.
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Re: Dick's House of Sport

Post by storewanderer »

The problem with Dick's is they only want to focus on certain product categories. Certain categories that are a major draw to Cabela's, Bass Pro, and to a lesser degree Scheels- Dick's does not want to focus on, has discontinued from certain store locations to make PR points, or their management has made public comments regarding certain product categories that have alienated a large segment of potential customers (you can interpret this comment as you like: the product category has alienated certain customers, and the removal of said category from some stores has alienated a different group of former customers).

Dick's is a store I've never purchased anything from. There has only been a store locally for a few years now. Never the right item at the right price. Scheels is just so far superior in mix (not quite sure about price) and service, there is little reason to go to Dick's. Copeland's and Sports Authority already failed in the local mall where Dick's is and I expect Dick's to fail too. And based on the local Dick's having a 3.9 rating over on Google and the Scheels having a 4.6 rating over on Google with about 5 times as many ratings submitted, it appears others share my feelings. Or the local Cabela's with a 4.5 rating over on Google and twice as many ratings submitted as Scheel's and about 10 times as many ratings submitted as Dick's...

The thing is these destination stores have been very successful for Cabela's, Scheels, and Bass Pro. So Dick's appears to be wanting to try a few stores and remake that experience. They will do well with it initially and if they maintain it and could expand it (or acquire these other chains with destination stores- though the product mix issues I mentioned above would be real issues) under those banners it could be a better way to quickly get more destination stores spread out across the US. I do think Cabela's has gone significantly downhill under Bass Pro but it still is a lot more of an experience than Dick's.
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Re: Dick's House of Sport

Post by pseudo3d »

storewanderer wrote: April 10th, 2021, 9:00 pm The problem with Dick's is they only want to focus on certain product categories. Certain categories that are a major draw to Cabela's, Bass Pro, and to a lesser degree Scheels- Dick's does not want to focus on, has discontinued from certain store locations to make PR points, or their management has made public comments regarding certain product categories that have alienated a large segment of potential customers (you can interpret this comment as you like: the product category has alienated certain customers, and the removal of said category from some stores has alienated a different group of former customers).

Dick's is a store I've never purchased anything from. There has only been a store locally for a few years now. Never the right item at the right price. Scheels is just so far superior in mix (not quite sure about price) and service, there is little reason to go to Dick's. Copeland's and Sports Authority already failed in the local mall where Dick's is and I expect Dick's to fail too. And based on the local Dick's having a 3.9 rating over on Google and the Scheels having a 4.6 rating over on Google with about 5 times as many ratings submitted, it appears others share my feelings. Or the local Cabela's with a 4.5 rating over on Google and twice as many ratings submitted as Scheel's and about 10 times as many ratings submitted as Dick's...

The thing is these destination stores have been very successful for Cabela's, Scheels, and Bass Pro. So Dick's appears to be wanting to try a few stores and remake that experience. They will do well with it initially and if they maintain it and could expand it (or acquire these other chains with destination stores- though the product mix issues I mentioned above would be real issues) under those banners it could be a better way to quickly get more destination stores spread out across the US. I do think Cabela's has gone significantly downhill under Bass Pro but it still is a lot more of an experience than Dick's.
I think we all know what those "certain product categories" are, but, whether right or wrong, it speaks horribly as a retailer to get major changes like that throughout the chain just at the compulsive whims of a CEO's decision.
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Re: Dick's House of Sport

Post by veteran+ »

Perhaps that CEO experienced a personal tragedy?
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Re: Dick's House of Sport

Post by buckguy »

They're probably reaching saturation in core markets and are looking for new ways to generate revenue. Also, REI has been adding experiential elements to its stores like climbing walls---mostly the flagships and they've also been upping their connection to outfitting and travel which they've been doing for decades. Northface apparently is moving in similar directions, as well.

Dick's has operated an outdoor "experience" (non-retail) operation in Pennsylvania for years (its visible from the Turnpike) and they are launching expo-type events in a number of cities. Galyans was a sort of second string REI by the time they bought it---terrible customer service and mixed bag of offerings---I don't know how much inspiration or talent they would have from an acquisition they made 20 years ago. The original Galyans operation in Indianapolis was much better.

Dick's mostly seems to focus on team and competitive sports, gym wear, shoes, etc. in their stores and has for a long time. There isn't much camping stuff and the outdoor clothing is hit or miss. They've been phasing out guns since Parkland and I would imagine that the "field and stream" merchandise always varied a lot by region---they've never carried much in the DC area, but they probably had more in Pittsburgh where hunting and fishing has always been more popular. I've never seen them as a competitor for Bass or Cabela, though.
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Re: Dick's House of Sport

Post by mjhale »

It is interesting that Dick's is going for an "experience" type concept. It is kind of like they are going back to where Galyans was as others have said. The Dick's store in Fairfax/Fair Lakes, VA was a former Galyans location. Originally Galyans was on its own but over time a Kohls and Whole Foods was built on either side. Recently Dick's moved from the former Galyans to a smaller location on the lower lever of the former Sears in Fair Oaks Mall. The upstairs of the former Sears is a Dave and Busters plus some sort of brew pub. I'd be curious how Dick's is picking the locations they will convert to this new "experience" format. The area where Dick's is located now and before in the former Galyan's is high income. With Dick's having the former Galyan's that had the rock climbing wall and such it would seem like an easy conversion. Maybe those huge former Galyans locations were just too much for Dick's to operate profitably. Or in the case of the move here perhaps they wanted the additional traffic of the mall as Fair Oaks seems to be doing okay since it reopened last year.
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Re: Dick's House of Sport

Post by babs »

I don't think firearms was ever a big seller at Dicks. If it was, they wouldn't have gotten rid of it so easily. Back when Dick's has gun counters, it was often unstaffed, or had little traffic. Now compare that to Cabela's, the firearms part of the store is always the packed. While Dick's took a PR hit that may have impacted other areas of their business, it wasn't a major part of their business. As someone else mentioned, Dick's focus is on footwear, apparel, team sports, golf and fitness. They're.not REI and they're not Cabela's/Bass Pro. They're a step down from both.
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Re: Dick's House of Sport

Post by storewanderer »

babs wrote: April 11th, 2021, 10:24 am I don't think firearms was ever a big seller at Dicks. If it was, they wouldn't have gotten rid of it so easily. Back when Dick's has gun counters, it was often unstaffed, or had little traffic. Now compare that to Cabela's, the firearms part of the store is always the packed. While Dick's took a PR hit that may have impacted other areas of their business, it wasn't a major part of their business. As someone else mentioned, Dick's focus is on footwear, apparel, team sports, golf and fitness. They're.not REI and they're not Cabela's/Bass Pro. They're a step down from both.
I don't have enough experience with Dick's to know how well the category performed/performs.

I was in a Dick's Field & Stream in Medford and it still has a large gun/ammo section. Really it seemed to be one of the highlights of the store. And this is where I have a real problem with Dick's. The CEO goes and makes the comments he made about guns in 2019, drops them in a few stores in 2019 when it was popular from a PR standpoint to do so, supposedly dropped guns at another batch of stores in 2020, yet as we sit here today almost 2 years later in 2021, continues to sell them in hundreds of stores. If it was so personal, why are they still selling any guns? If they are such a great retailer of shoes and running shorts that they need more space for those categories, I would think they would have gotten all of the gun departments closed ASAP in 2019 so they could allocate more space to all those shoes and running shorts that are flying off the shelves. I think it was all a PR ploy and there are a number of folks out there who think Dick's stopped selling guns and is some sort of great company for doing so when in reality they are still one of the largest retailers of guns in the US.

I don't care so much that they ended the sale of guns in a few stores. I am happy for the independent businesses that gained share as a result of the move. I just don't like how they went about it.

Dick's focusing on footwear (departments are self serve so little labor), apparel, team sports - all higher margin categories. Golf and fitness - maybe not quite as high margin, depending on the item, and higher labor.

Sounds sort of like what the department stores did over the years which at the time the financial folks said was great as they were focusing on higher margin categories, but ultimately drove them into irrelevance. Picked and chose categories, got rid of more and more products, focusing on "higher margin" soft type items.

Maybe this will work for Dick's. Vendors seem to be working with Dick's to favor it over other retailers, like Nike, who ended so many wholesale accounts and as a result will push more and more customers to Dick's.
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