Back in 1978 three entrepreneurs got together and started a new concept in retailing, a store solely dedicated to helping people get organized. While many thought it was a store that sold empty boxes, The Container Store quickly established itself as the go to place for those who are seeking to simplify their lives. From its roots in Dallas, to today, The Container Store has built a cult like following which has enabled it to open its 83rd store this year.
Today The Container Store employs over 4,200 employees and brings in over $800 million in revenue annually. The company has done this by constantly innovating in regards to introducing new products, new methods of organizing, and a unique way of treating its employees. Unlike most specialty shops, The Container Store prides itself on the investment they make in their employees. A typical Container Store employee earns 50% more than their counterparts at other retail establishments. Employees also are required to take over 250 hours of job specific training in order to help them learn the products and to be able to better help the consumer. The Container Store believes in a one on one customer approach, focusing on identifying the customer’s needs and presenting the solutions to fit those needs.
One may think that due to the specialty nature of the store, and the expense of training employees, the products in the store would be expensive. Granted, there are several products that are at a luxury price-point, but deals are surprisingly common. The most expensive item in the store is what is known to some of the employees as the “Sex in The City Closet”. The closet is a complete walk in storage system which can accommodate enough clothing and shoes to even satisfy Imelda Marcos’ storage needs. The price-tag is steep at almost $20,000. Fortunately, there is something for everybody at the container store with the cheapest item going for as little as 49 cents.
The store itself is a wonderland of containers of all shapes and sizes with every color of the rainbow represented. The goal of the store is to be able to provide storage solutions that can be incorporated into every budget and every style. As a store that is all about organization the store is very bright, clean, and free of clutter. The items are displayed in a pleasant eye catching manner. One unique display is the the collection of glass bottles that is displayed in front of the front windows which allows the light to pass though the bottles creating a stained glass effect.
Even with its unique products, well trained employees, and expert merchandising, The Container Store relies on one final piece to the puzzle to insure its success: Community Involvement. Per Container Store tradition the company chooses a local non-profit to share in the opening weekend sales. For Omaha the recipient will be the Omaha Children’s Museum. The 10% of the sales generated by The Container Store on the 22nd and 23rd will be donated directly to the museum to help the museum fulfill its goals. Even after the opening weekend concludes The Container Store will continue to participate in community based causes. This is a tradition that has been carried on for decades and allows The Container Store to fulfill its goal of “conscious capitalism”.
The opening weekend of the Omaha Container Store will be chock full of deals and giveaways. Vendors such as Aroma’s Coffee, Blatt Beer & Table, and others will be providing snacks and various give-aways. Every hour there will be prize drawings as well as gifts for early shoppers. All of the excitement, unique products, organizational ideas, and well trained employees make The Container Store truly a “toy store for adults”.