A Digital Extension to the In Store Experience

Shopping in a store is a very different experience than shopping online.

Both experiences have benefits; in store, you can touch and feel the quality of what you’re buying. You don’t need to rely on your monitor’s colour settings to see if the cushion on the screen will match your favourite chair. Red, after all, is not always red.

Online, you can quickly scroll through a warehouse of options without ever leaving your couch or spilling your drink. You don’t need to worry about children running amok, or people making you uncomfortable. You can browse curated collections of unique and hard to find products. You can learn from the reviews of previous buyers of the coffeemaker and really do your research.

But there’s a dark side…

Both experiences also have shortcomings; in store, popular items often sell out and you need to wait until more arrive. Often, only the basic colour choices are in stock; and good luck if you want an odd size! If the store is busy, it can be difficult to get answers to questions, and lines at the checkout are a pain if you’re in a rush.

Waiting for shipping to our remote community is a common complaint of online shopping; especially when what arrives is not the quality you were promised. “Free Shipping” is a cost often rolled into pricing, and the environmental footprint of large boxes holding small items cannot be understated.

The happy mix of a modern Relationship

The next decade will show how we evolve our relationships into the modern era; if we can leverage the power of digital tools without losing the personal connection of true social interaction, with other human beings.

Here at BMK, our vision is for a lifestyle that supports, or at the very least doesn’t harm, our environment or community. Our website is about to become a much bigger part of our toolbox, and will allow us to collaborate on the logistics of shipping from great companies.

Research Phase – What are you looking for?

Have a look through our department pages to get an idea of what we offer (main menu – shop dropdown – kitchenware, etc). We’ve designed these pages to be an overview of what we sell, just like if you walked into the store and had a look around the display.

I know, we don’t have many products listed online yet. We’re going slowly on purpose, making sure we get it right so that the store is easy to browse through. With over 6000 products in store, it could get messy really quick if we’re not careful!

When in doubt, reach out with what you’re looking for and we’ll help point the way! The little yellow chatbox on the bottom right corner is a direct portal to the team. We’ll try to have someone watching for new messages to help with directions and ideas, just like in the store!

Ordering those odd sizes

In a smaller community like Revelstoke, it’s hard to predict what products we should bring in to our “warehouse”. We make our best guess and try to stick to a budget. But then, I’ll have some visitors comment about how difficult to find items like egg piercers are, and all of a sudden we’re sold out because they bought one for all their sisters back home.

Beyond the collection in our Downtown Revelstoke store, there lies a large collection of warehouses both here in BC and out east in Ontario and Quebec. On January 26th, Kat and I will be in Toronto for our buying show, meeting with the sales reps and seeing the new products in person. We’ll be looking for new innovation, sustainable trends and ideas for the store. We’ll reconnect with our long time suppliers, and look to meet new ones.

Since we try to optimize our shipping for cost and climate impact, there are several vendors we’ve only ordered from twice a year. As the website fills with their products, we’re hoping to make it easier to order the items we don’t have space for. These great collections of bedding, cookware, knives, appliances and tools are investments that you want to research thoroughly. We’ll help with the decision, and take care of you after the sale with our warranty and parts service.

Digital Customer Service Desk

Part of our conversation should be in person; it’s easier to explain a product when we can show you how to assemble each mandolin, rather then trying to type out directions.

Details like order dates and expected arrival times, however, that can be done by email or text in my opinion.

I’ve been focusing a lot of effort on training our “robots” to do the grunt work of data entry to keep everyone’s information up to date. I want our team to have more time to talk with you about the best tool for your new favourite recipe.

Watch for more interactive displays in the store this spring as we link to our educational content online. Don’t hesitate to bring out your smart phone for the full experience!