Other stores can learn from Ikea
Sure, roll your eyes at the cult-like following the Swedish furniture store seems to attract like gravy (or lingoberry sauce) on meatballs but you can sure see why it has a loyal Momma following. We did a media tour today of the new Tampa Ikea store that opens Wednesday, May 6 and boy do they make it easy on families. It starts in the parking lot where a separate parking area is set aside for families.
Once inside, you can take one of their free strollers, or put your stuff in a free locker, grab a 99-cent breakfast for your kids or one for yourself for $1.99. Did we mention the 50-cent hot dog for lunch?
Heading to the bathroom? They have a nice breastfeeding area and even extra diapers -- for free! They have bottle warmers in the cafe, interactive puzzles and games stationed throughout the giant store and I haven't even mentioned the free kids play area where you can drop off potty-trained little ones for an hour while you shop. The kids will be entertained with movies, a rock climbing wall or just a place to sit and color.
Few stores go that far out of their way to sell you cheap book shelves, end tables and napkins. We wish more did.
-- Sharon Kennedy Wynne and Sherry Robinson