Our old office space was in this current retail space and every week multiple people would walk in the door and think it was a shoe store, and we got tired of telling people ‘I’m sorry, you have to go to our website to buy a pair of shoes. We wanted to tie into that gritty, authenticity of Milwaukee is a shoemaking capital and building the brand around it.
Part of that is just discovery, learning about new brands and new products. It’s our first opportunity to actually physically listen to a customer. E-commerce is fast and efficient and everybody loves it, but there’s also just a lot of anonymity to it. You miss feedback, both positive and negative about the product, about the fit, about the comfort. This gives us an ear to the consumer where we can correct product and improve product as we move forward.