15 Incredible Things Apple Does to Win with Retail

Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) retail guru Ron Johnson is leaving the company to become CEO of J.C. Penney (NYSE:JCP). 

In light of his departure, we thought we’d highlight what Johnson built over the last decade — a feature we first published last month for the 10th anniversary of Apple’s first store opening. The Most Obvious Reason Why Apple Inc. Shares Are Undervalued Today>>

Apple has more than 300 stores in 11 countries, and its retail division has become a hugely important part of the company’s business, selling millions of iPods, Macs, iPhones, and iPads.

Ten years in, Apple has 323 stores in 11 countries on 4 continents. 1 billion visitors have come to Apple stores during that time.

Ten years in, Apple has 323 stores in 11 countries on 4 continents. 1 billion visitors have come to Apple stores during that time.

Retail represented $3.19 billion of Apple’s revenue last quarter, or 13% of the company’s overall sales.

Retail represented $3.19 billion of Apple's revenue last quarter, or 13% of the company's overall sales.

That’s up 90% on a year-over-year basis. This means Apple retail is growing faster than Apple overall, which grew 83% year-over-year in the March quarter.

Apple sold 797,000 Macs in its stores last quarter, or 21% of its total, fueled by the release of a new MacBook Pro lineup.

Apple sold 797,000 Macs in its stores last quarter, or 21% of its total, fueled by the release of a new MacBook Pro lineup.

Apple’s largest retail store is Regent Street in London, which is 25,000 square feet. The Nokia (NYSE:NOK) store across the street recently went belly-up.

Apple's largest retail store is Regent Street in London, which is 25,000 square feet. The Nokia store across the street recently went belly-up.

Image: Flickr/Jeff Wilcox

Data source: ifoAppleStore

71 million people visited Apple’s retail stores during the March quarter, which is about same amount of people that paid to attend a Major League Baseball game last season (73 million).

71 million people visited Apple's retail stores during the March quarter, which is about same amount of people that paid to attend a Major League Baseball game last season (73 million).

Image: Roy Zipstein

Apple retail is the only thing Steve Jobs would admit hiring a consultant for.

Apple retail is the only thing Steve Jobs would admit hiring a consultant for.

He told Fortune in 2008: “The only consultants I’ve ever hired in my 10 years is one firm to analyze Gateway’s retail strategy so I would not make some of the same mistakes they made [when launching Apple’s retail stores]. But we never hire consultants, per se. We just want to make great products.”

Apple plans to open 40 new stores by the end of September, about 3/4 of which will be outside the United States, including its fifth store in China.

Apple plans to open 40 new stores by the end of September, about 3/4 of which will be outside the United States, including its fifth store in China.

Image: Roy Zipstein

Once a year, when the new iPhone comes out, thousands of people wait in line outside Apple stores for hours and hours and hours. Apple is smart enough to provide drinks, snacks, and umbrellas for shade or rain protection.

Once a year, when the new iPhone comes out, thousands of people wait in line outside Apple stores for hours and hours and hours. Apple is smart enough to provide drinks, snacks, and umbrellas for shade or rain protection.

Apple Retail has 30,000 full-time-equivalent employees

Apple Retail has 30,000 full-time-equivalent employees

Data source: ifoAppleStore

In late 2009, Apple boasted that its stores brought in $4,300 per square foot, which was 5X the $872 per square foot that Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) did at the time.

In late 2009, Apple boasted that its stores brought in $4,300 per square foot, which was 5X the $872 per square foot that Best Buy did at the time.

Data source: Gizmodo

Getting a job at an Apple Store can be more selective than getting into Harvard.

Getting a job at an Apple Store can be more selective than getting into Harvard.

Image: Scott Beale / Laughing Squid

In 2009, Apple said that 10,000 people submitted applications to work at its new store on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, according to Gizmodo’s Matt Buchanan.

Of those, just over 200 got jobs, for a 2% acceptance rate.

Meanwhile, Harvard’s acceptance rate was 7% that past year, according to a report in the Boston Globe. That’s 29,000 applications for about 2,000 admissions.

The smallest Apple Store is at Santa Rosa Plaza in California

The smallest Apple Store is at Santa Rosa Plaza in California

Image: Apple

It’s just 540 square feet.

Apple supposedly spends $315,000 per store on wood furniture, according to ifoAppleStore.

Apple supposedly spends $315,000 per store on wood furniture, according to ifoAppleStore.

Overall, it costs about $1 million to build out a mall store, $8-10 million to build out an impressive store, and $20-40 million to build out a crazy-impressive store, according to ifoAppleStore.

About half of the Macs sold in Apple retail stores were to people who had never owned a Mac before.

About half of the Macs sold in Apple retail stores were to people who had never owned a Mac before.

It’s impressive that this stat, which Apple shares during its quarterly earnings calls, hasn’t changed over the years.

Apple’s Bondi store in Australia is the only one with a living tree inside it, according to ifoAppleStore.

Apple's Bondi store in Australia is the only one with a living tree inside it, according to ifoAppleStore.

Image: Apple

Some sort of ficus.

Source: ifoAppleStore

Check out more cool stories at Business Insider >>

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