Boeing products are a familiar sight around the world, with some 14,000 commercial aircraft, 6,000 military aircraft and 345 Boeing-launched satellites currently in service.
And aviation aficionados everywhere can own a piece of the aerospace legend by shopping at the Boeing Store.
More than an employee gift shop or surplus parts store, the Boeing Store has 15 retail locations in seven states -- nine of which are open to the public -- two traveling stores and an
Boeing employees James Moe, Charlene Noll and Steve Reines, from left, have years of retail business experience that is helping to make improvements in the Boeing Store.
From 800 to 1,000 different items are offered in each of the Boeing Store retail locations at any time, and new merchandise is rotated into inventory seasonally. Brand names include Swiss Army, Dufeau, and K'NEX. For collectors, the Boeing Store offers more than 50 aircraft models, ranging from snap-together kits to handcrafted executive-quality models.
The related e-commerce site, BoeingStore.com, carries nearly 500 items and offers 24-hour ordering and live customer service. The site also features custom matting and framing of an exclusive collection of aircraft prints and photographs, allowing customers to preview their selections on line.
In response to customer requests, Boeing Stores, Inc., is making significant improvements to several of its operations in the Puget Sound, Wash., area that will improve accessibility and create a more enjoyable shopping experience. These changes will be the model for future improvements around the country.
Mikal Wasch, senior manager of Boeing Stores, Inc., said the effort is part of a larger move across the company to stabilize the Boeing Stores' business performance, improve customer satisfaction and provide an experience in keeping with the Boeing name and reputation.
"Last year we made great strides in enhancing our business practices and operations including staff, equipment and approach," Wasch said. "These improvements in Puget Sound will be even more apparent to the average shopper."
The goal in planning changes to the stores is to offer improved traffic flow and more efficient checkout, saving time for busy shoppers, while providing a pleasing environment that evokes the romance of flight. The Boeing Store in the main lobby of the 25-01 Longacres Flight Center building in Renton, Wash., received new fixtures and décor during its recent expansion and remodeling. And in the Everett, Wash., 40-92 building, a new kiosk will be installed next to a branch of the Boeing Employees Credit Union, bringing a new level of convenience to Boeing employees in that facility.
More than an employee gift shop or surplus parts store, the Boeing Store has 15 retail locations in seven states -- nine of which are open to the public, such as this site in Renton, Wash. -- two traveling stores and an e-commerce.
The store near the Boeing factory facility in Renton, Wash., is undergoing the biggest change. The east side of the building will have a covered public street entrance and coffee cart. The grand reopening of the store is planned for June 26 and 27 and will include refreshments and special guests.
"The Renton location is definitely a different approach for us in this area, and it's exciting," Wasch said. "We have an opportunity to directly offer Boeing Stores to the public. The tremendous worldwide Boeing brand obviously is very appealing in this region and around the world."
Boeing maintains a high degree of control over the merchandising program to ensure that products carrying the Boeing name reflect the quality and innovation for which the company is known. Many of the products offered are custom-designed and not available anywhere else. E-commerce sales at BoeingStore.com have grown significantly this year as international shoppers have discovered that they can select from an assortment of unique merchandise with convenient 24-hour shopping and customer service.
Hiring regional sales managers with experience in retail sales merchandising, design, marketing and general business operations, and adding expertise in allocations, bank reconciliation and traveling stores operations, already has brought positive results, Wasch said. But although providing a good value is important, it's only part of the stores' appeal.
"Employees, aviation enthusiasts, and kids visit our stores and Web site because they are intrigued by the Boeing brand and want to own a piece of an aerospace legend," Wasch said.
Boeing Store Web site
Store locations: Click on the individual store name for addresses, driving directions and hours.
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