The Apple Store is more than a store. It’s a study in psychological addiction.
There are five things Apple does to enhance the in-store experience:
- Touch and Play – You can go into any Apple store and play with the machines as if you already own them. The products are tethered to an extendable wire so you can easily pick them up and move them around. Playing with Apple products is like test driving a car. The tangible experience imprints the desire to own the product.
- Sexiness – Apple makes the sleekest product, hands down. I got into a Disqus discussion yesterday with a PC diehard. Even he admitted he wanted to “caress” Apple product.
- Free Internet – Who doesn’t like free Internet? Every time I hit up the Apple Store I browse the web. I’ll hit up some basic sites like ESPN or even my blog, basically everything that I can do just by pulling out my own iPhone. The combination of Apple and free wifi just makes you feel good.
- Easy checkout – Forget the buzz around Square and Starbucks. Apple built and implemented in-store the technology that removes the friction of the queue. The irony of course is that the Apple store is so sticky that even when someone checks out, they still walk around to play with other stuff. See #1.
- Free Education – You don’t need to pay for Apple’s in-store tutorials. All you need to do is sign up online and show up. Everyone enjoys learning, especially when it feels like you’re learning from MIT nerds. Again, this is all free.
Apple built all the pieces to the perfect store. The Apple Store is a futuristic museum of commercial and usable art.