Apple stores bring in big money for a small space

Cutting out cash registers suddenly makes sense
Cutting out cash registers suddenly makes sense

While it's well known that Apple's products turn a profit, a new report shows that Apple's retail stores are doing very well for the company.

Independent retail analyst firm RetailSails released its 2012 chain store productivity guide, which shows Apple turning a profit with its highly efficient stores.

The most interesting statistic for Apple comes from its sales per square foot ratio, where Apple stores average $6,050 (UK£3,812, AUD$5,799) per square foot of retail space.

As a comparison, the store closest to Apple's sales per square foot is Tiffany's at $3,017 (UK£1,901, AUD$2,892). Companies like Lululemon athletica, Coach, and Michael Kors follow behind under $2,000 (UK£1,260, AU$D1,917) per square foot.

Measuring retail success

Of course, the comparison is unfair since clothing stores will have extra space for things like changing rooms, which Apple stores do not need to account for in their square footage.

Sales per square footage of retail space may seem like an arbitrary metric, but it can actually be quite valuable.

Shoppers are increasingly turning to online storefronts rather than brick and mortar locations. A recent study projected that online shopping will increase by 25 percent for holiday shopping this year, which had already seen an increase over the year prior.

Many retailers have had to close retail stores as part of the shift, and there is now increased pressure to justify the stores that are still open.

Not that Apple stores are in danger of closing any time soon, as those retail spots were a big part of the iPhone 5 reaching five million sales at launch and the successful launch of the iPad mini and iPad 4.

After all, if not for Apple stores where would people go to find out that the newest Apple device is already sold out?

Via Apple Insider, RetailSails