Hastings remodels store, adds merchandise

(Photo by Jenny Bivens)
The Maryville branch of Hastings has recently undergone
remodeling, welcoming a new look and new products.

The Maryville branch of Hastings Entertainment remodeled the interior of its store recently and increased its selection of merchandise. The two-week process is complete and a variety of new products are now available to customers.

According to the company website, Hastings Entertainment is a “multimedia entertainment retailer that combines the sale of new and used books, videos, video games and CDs, and trends and consumer electronics merchandise, with the rental of videos and video games in a superstore format.” In addition to entertainment merchandise, Hastings carries products relevant to college students, such as music theory books, test preparation materials, textbooks and documentaries.

This year, Hastings made additions to around half of their 146 stores nationwide and has plans to continue with the remaining stores in 2013. The Hastings in Maryville was one of the stores selected to be renovated first. Trish Lumpkin, manager of Maryville’s Hastings branch, said that the company’s recent actions are partially in response to changes in the entertainment industry, such as the current trend toward streaming videos online instead of renting movies.

Hastings is evolving with the industry in order to continue to make a profit. “We’re changing with the times,” Lumpkin said. Freshman Megan Sparkes is a part-time employee at Hastings under the management of Lumpkin.

Sparkes said that the remodeling helped to clear out aisles and separate the video sales and rental areas. In addition to reorganizing existing merchandise, the Hastings store in Maryville is introducing new products to their selection and adding new lines of merchandise.

“We’re selling bigger items now, items you wouldn’t expect in an entertainment store,” Sparkes said. Skateboards and accessories, paintball and Airsoft products and a selection of yoga and exercise equipment are now available in-store. Lumpkin soon expects the Maryville store to offer more tablet computers, furniture and television sets.

The store is also introducing a Shop Smart area, which will have liquidation items.

“They’re all high-margin items and they’re selling exceptionally well,” Lumpkin said. Though Hastings is adding products to its store, Lumpkin said that no current lines of merchandise are being discontinued.Instead, the store will carry a larger selection of items such as action figures, board games, posters and apparel. Lumpkin said that, overall, customers have reacted favorably to the changes made to the store.

MC junior and history major Rob Deighton said he enjoyed the improvements to Hastings. “I think it’s really great that Hastings added a lot of new products without getting rid of anything,” Deighton said. “I go to there about once a week to rent movies and I enjoy browsing their massive selection of all things entertainment.” Sam Wilson, a junior English literature major, agreed with Deighton.

“I am so excited that I can go to Hastings and get a variety of things without having to go to multiple stores,” Wilson said. “I think everyone should check out the new selection of merchandise.”

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