Tim Cook's Plan to Sell More iPhones in Apple Stores Could Be Tough Task

Tim Cook is reportedly trying to sell more iPhones through Apple Stores instead of via carrier partners -- but that could be an uphill task according to an analysis from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners.

In the U.S., Apple has roughly 250 retail stores, compared to more than 10,000 third-party retail outlets that sell the iPhone. In addition to that, Apple's retail stores are extremely busy and it remains to be seen if the company can dramatically ramp up its iPhone sales without hiring more staff or opening more locations.

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"We don’t know, exactly, how Apple can realistically meet Cook’s goals," CIRP co-founder Michael Levin told AllThingsD. "However one defines those goals, we can’t see how their mostly jammed stores can handle more customers, sales associates and inventory."

[…]

As CIRP observes, when Apple debuts a new iPhone, its stores typically run at capacity — canceling vacations, hiring part-time staff, etc. Pushing the percentage of all iPhones sold through Apple Stores from 20 percent to 50 percent would likely require similar efforts.

One issue for Apple is that many iPhone owners still see Apple Retail Stores as places to get service, not buy a phone. Some research shows 90% of first-time iPhone buyers purchase their phones at carrier retail stores.

In order to jumpstart iPhone sales during the company's important back-to-school season, it has, for the first time, included the iPhone on its list of devices that come with an App Store Gift Card when sold to students. Apple is also rumored to be launching a new in-store smartphone trade-in program.

Top Rated Comments

StuBeck Avatar
111 months ago
Making it easier to buy things in the Apple store would be a great first step. I understand the idea of wanting a consultant to decide what you want, but when I already know, its not easy to buy things there. They need to bring back cash registers so one can simply pick up a product and buy it. The last two times I've bought Mac's from them, I've had to hunt someone down after waiting for 15 minutes. Its a ridiculous process and why I haven't gone to an Apple store in a rather long time.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
newdeal Avatar
111 months ago
I went in to an Apple store to buy an iPhone (unlocked) without activating service of any sort and it literally took me 45 minutes. First I had to wait for someone to help me, then I had to wait for them to get someone to get the product, then I had to wait to get the product, then when I got the product they had to open it and activate it. They literally could have just handed me a phone and been done with it but yet it was instead the worst experience I have ever had in a store just due to the amount of time it took to do something so simple
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
theheadguy Avatar
111 months ago
They assume the Verizon and AT&T stores are the place to go, but when they do go, the sales reps push them to Android.
Have you ever considered why they push them to Android phones? What makes you think the sales rep are obligated to push a stale design? Because it's Apple? Not everyone froths at the mouth over the iPhone like so many people here.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
InfernoShade Avatar
111 months ago
Have you ever considered why they push them to Android phones? What makes you think the sales rep are obligated to push a stale design? Because it's Apple? Not everyone froths at the mouth over the iPhone like so many people here.
Dude, they push them to specific items not based on personal preference. It's all based on money. There are different deals made with manufacturers so they make different amounts of money off the sale. It's not because joe salesman likes something. So don't get all bent out of shape with your "frothing at the mouth".
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
STiNG Operation Avatar
111 months ago
A big factor in that is Apple stores are few and far between. I would personally have to drive an hour to get to one, where as an AT&T store is 5 mins away.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
monkor Avatar
111 months ago
Turn each Apple Store into a Gladiator arena, choose weapons upon entry.

Only the worthy leave with iPhones.

Most just leave...empty hand-less!

Congestion solved, you're welcome Apple.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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