1. Very nice that you’ve taken into account the driving directions in other countries. What you may have missed is that in other countries it might not be as common to find play space in a store. The US is big, you guys tend to have bigger properties, be it houses or stores. In other parts of the world store owners may not be able to afford making much space available for play. In fact I know several stores that have a single table just because they can’t afford to place more. This table tends to be used for demo-ing and explaining rather than playing.

    In Amsterdam the biggest game store is about 15 feet by 45 feet (yes, biggest) and they’ve chosen a location well away from the general shopping areas just to be able to afford it. About half this store is dedicated playing area, but I get the impression they’re having a hard time justifying it because of the little income they get from that. They first made drinks mandatory for those who play there and have now started charging a flat €2 to everybody who wants to play.

    • That’s a great point. And any store owner should take into account the cost of any play space especially in locations with steep rents where square footage (or square meters for my European readers) is at a premium. That being said I am curious if there is a relationship between total sales and available play area to enjoy ones purchase or in other words do people buy more if they have somewhere to play.

      • I think there would likely be a relation, but it depends on what you compare to. It feels to me like having a place to play would increase your sales, however, that using that floor space for extra product may also increase it. It feels like just removing that space from the store would decrease sales in any case. Amsterdam has more game clubs than game stores, there may very well be enough space to play in already.

        Very big department stores may have a food area built in, otherwise we tend not to get stores with any space for something other than buying their stuff. I was once at a music store with a booth to listen to music in, to me that was very unique.

        Let’s say you currently use 80% of your space and you have to consider how you’re going to use the remaining 20%. You are probably already stocking your best sellers in the 80% and some other things that do well too. More product would naturally not be best selling product. On the other hand, would a play space pay out better? It might get you more food and drink sales, but would it add much to your product sales?

        I think that ideally you would have a convertible space so that you can adjust to what you need at a given time (like running events). This may be hard to accomplish though.

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