Macy's has a new plan to fix its biggest problem

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Before you go close icon

Department stores' dismal week

Macy's sales have been declining amid a bigger slowdown in American retail.

But now, the company is planning a new makeover.

Macy's is currently revamping its location in Columbus, Ohio at the Easton Town Center, according to the Columbus Dispatch. The company will launch this new test model on June 25.

This version of the store will have "lifestyle" sections and mini-stores, such as a spa and a LensCrafters, within the department store. One of these sections, called Restore, Nourish and Strengthen, will zero in on the profitable fitness boom and feature a juice bar and athletic clothing. It will even take a cue from Lululemon's "educators" and call sales floor representatives "ambassadors."

The makeover comes at a time when Macy's is trying to get discount-addicted customers to pay full-price.

A walk around its Herald Square flagship revealed a store that was in total disarray, complete with lots and lots of markdowns. An off-price section called Last Act resembled a bargain basement.

Check out Macy's Herald Square location:

16 PHOTOS
Macy's flagship Herald Square store
See Gallery
Macy's has a new plan to fix its biggest problem
Pedestrians walk through Herald Square past a Macy's Inc. department store in New York, U.S., on Monday, August 10, 2015. Macy's Inc., the largest U.S. department-store company, is scheduled to report second-quarter earnings before the opening of U.S. financial markets on August 12. Photographer: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Photograph shows a corner view of the 1924 addition to the Macy's department store building on 34th Street at Herald Square in Manhattan, New York, 1930s. (Photo by FPG/Getty Images)
An exterior view of Macy's Department store July 14, 1994. View is from Herald Square in the busy midtown section of New York City at 34th Street. (AP Photo/Marty Lederhandler)
Shoppers stand outside a packed vestibule entrance to Macy's Herald Square store in New York minutes before the 7 a.m. opening Friday, Dec. 26, 2003. (AP Photo/Tina Fineberg)
397655 01: Shoppers make their way across Herald Square near Macy's department store November 23, 2001 in New York City. The Christmas shopping season started kicked off in the United States the day after Thanksgiving, one of the busiest shopping days of the year. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 22: A holiday scene is depicted in a Macy's at Herald Square department store window during the unveiling of the retailer's holiday windows November 22, 2002 in New York City. (Photo by Matthew Peyton/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 28: The Macy's Herald Square entrance is seen February 28, 2005 in New York City. Federated Department Stores Inc. is buying rival May Department Stores Co. for $11 billion in cash and stock in a deal that would enable them to compete against Wal-Mart Stores Inc. as well as upscale retailers. (Photo by Stephen Chernin/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - AUGUST 15: Pedestrians and shoppers pass by the Macy's flagship store at Herald Square in New York, Wednesday, Aug. 15, 2007. Macy's Inc., the second-largest department-store chain, reported quarterly profit that exceeded analysts' estimates because of reduced advertising and retirement costs. (Photo by Michael Nagle/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - AUGUST 15: Pedestrians and shoppers pass by the Macy's flagship store at Herald Square in New York, Wednesday, Aug. 15, 2007. Macy's Inc., the second-largest department-store chain, reported quarterly profit that exceeded analysts' estimates because of reduced advertising and retirement costs. (Photo by Michael Nagle/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 05: The New Year's Eve Ball, which will be seen by millions as it descends above Times Square to ring in 2009, is displayed at the Macy's Store in Herald Square November 5, 2008 in New York City. The Waterford Crystal ball is comprised of 672 crystal triangles and is themed 'Let There Be Light.' (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
Shoppers look at shirts at Macy's Herald Square department store in New York, U.S., on Friday, Nov. 27, 2009. Shoppers gathered at Best Buy Co., Target Corp. and Toys 'R' Us Inc. stores from New Jersey to Texas well before midnight yesterday to take advantage of Black Friday deals on televisions, laptops and robot hamsters. Photographer: Jin Lee/Bloomberg via Getty Images ***
Pedestrians walk past Macy's department store at Herald Square in New York, U.S., on Tuesday, April 6, 2010. March sales at U.S. retailers probably jumped almost three times as much as previously anticipated, as the early Easter holiday, warm weather and an improved job market boosted consumer spending. Photographer: Jin Lee/Bloomberg via Getty Images
FILE - In this Thursday, Nov. 28, 2013, photo, a shopper takes a selfie as crowds pour into the Macy's Herald Square flagship store in New York. The government reports on sales at U.S. retailers in November on Thursday, Dec. 12, 2013. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
A shopper rests in the shoe section of the Macy's Herald Square store, Thursday, Nov. 28, 2013, in New York. Instead of waiting for Black Friday, which is typically the year's biggest shopping day, more than a dozen major retailers opened on Thanksgiving this year. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Shoppers carry bags as they cross a pedestrian walkway near Macy's in Herald Square, Friday, Nov. 27, 2015, in New York. The early numbers aren't available yet on how many shoppers headed out to stores on Thanksgiving, instead of waiting until today. But it's expected that more than three times the number who shopped yesterday will be out bargain-hunting today.(AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE
SHOW CAPTION +
HIDE CAPTION

The company, like many other retailers, has been losing its premiere positioning. But now, it appears the company wants to change how people perceive it.

There will even be personal shoppers through a program called "My Stylist @ Macy's," hinting that shopping at Macy's is a high-end experience. Columbus Business Journal notes that the company is also testing out a program called Connect @ Macy's, through which customers can pick up anything they buy online in the store — a way, arguably, to get people into the store for the "experience."

This is the first Macy's store that will be doing trying out this new model, and the Dispatch notes that the company will be seeing how customers respond to the changes.

"That's one of the best things about working at Macy's — they're not afraid to change," Vice President and Store Manager Kathi Newton said to the Dispatch. "It's about responding to what the customer is telling us."

Macy'sThomson Reuters

What they're silently telling the company now, arguably, is that they're not liking how things are going: sales have been down for five quarters.

In the first quarter of fiscal 2016, sales fell 7.4%.

"We are seeing continued weakness in consumer spending levels for apparel and related categories,"Terry J. Lundgren, the chairman and CEO of Macy's, said in a statement.

It's no secret that consumers would rather spend on money on things other than apparel; this appears to be Macy's way of capitalizing on that.

Additionally, Macy's has been prone to incessant discounting. Though this new model may presumably help people think of Macy's as a premiere retailer again, customers need a lot to convince them to pay full price.

NOW WATCH: Chick-fil-A is giving out free sandwiches — here's how to get one

See Also:

SEE ALSO: We went to Macy's and saw why the brand is a disaster

Read Full Story

Want more news like this?

Sign up for Finance Report by AOL and get everything from business news to personal finance tips delivered directly to your inbox daily!

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.

From Our Partners