Coming soon: Macy’s big change to compete with T.J. Maxx and Ross Dress for Less


After announcing plans to close 100 underperforming stores back in August 2016, Macy’s has been working hard to turn its business around in the Amazon age.

One thing that’s working really well for Macy’s is its on-mall, off-price concept called Backstage.

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Macy’s Backstage is expanding! Here’s what bargain shoppers need to know

If you’ve never been to Macy’s Backstage, a new location may be coming to your local mall soon! Company executives announced that they’re opening 100 stores inside of existing Macy’s stores in fiscal 2018.

The department store chain has already opened about 20 Backstage locations in the first quarter of the year.

Macy’s initial Backstage stores were clustered in the Northeast, but this expansion is bringing the discount stores to markets new to the Backstage concept — like the Northwest and Southwest.

What exactly can you expect from Macy’s Backstage? Many bargain shoppers describe it as a mix of T.J. Maxx, Ross Dress for Less and Nordstrom Rack.

These pictures from a Backstage location outside Atlanta will give you a better idea:

Center Stage at Macy's Backstage

Ladies clothing at Macy's Backstage


Bedding at Macy's Backstage

Home decor at Macy's Backstage

Household utensils at Macy's Backstage

The outlet store features a variety of products from both new and well-known brands, and some of the merchandise isn’t sold at full-line Macy’s stores.

Clothing takes up the bulk of the retail space, but Backstage also sells these items:

  • Housewares
  • Home textiles & decor
  • Cosmetics
  • Hair & nail care
  • Gifts
  • Jewelry
  • Shoes
  • Designer handbags
  • Accessories

One thing that loyal Macy’s shoppers will want to keep in mind before heading to a Backstage location is the coupon policy — they’re not accepted.

That’s because Macy’s says Backstage merchandise is already discounted between 20% and 80% every day.

“Our customers are thrilled about the Macy’s Backstage shopping experience,” said Michelle Israel, Macy’s senior vice president of off price. “Macy’s Backstage brings great deals, the thrill of the hunt and fun into our existing Macy’s locations. The focus on value and newness guarantees that with each visit, shoppers will find a compelling assortment of recognizable brands, trends and deals. We’re pleased to be expanding the Backstage shopping experience across all of our regions, including to the West Coast.”

To support the growth of Backstage, Macy’s intends to open a dedicated Backstage distribution center in Columbus, Ohio. It will open in late 2019 and create about 400 jobs.

Here are some of the Macy’s Backstage stores that have recently opened:


  • Mall at Northgate – San Rafael
  • NewPark Mall – Newark


  • Merritt Square – Merritt Island


  • Greenwood Park Mall – Greenwood
  • Tippecanoe Mall – Lafayette


  • Genesee Valley Center – Flint

New York 

  • Galleria at Crystal Run – Middletown

North Carolina

  • Friendly Center – Greensboro


  • Great Lakes Mall – Mentor
  • Tri-County Mall – Cincinnati


  • Lloyd Center – Portland


  • La Palmera – Corpus Christi
  • Pearland Town Center – Pearland


  • Spotsylvania Town Centre – Fredericksburg

West Virginia

  • Huntington Mall – Barboursville

A few thoughts about Macy’s Backstage… 

I’ve made a few trips to Macy’s Backstage over the past year and think the prices are generally in the ballpark of T.J. Maxx and Ross Dress for Less — but slightly higher on many products.

Backstage also doesn’t make the best first impression, with merchandise often displayed in a disorganized manner.

For example, I’ve seen racks with so many articles of clothing bunched together that it’s nearly impossible to move the hangers and browse the items.

Still, I’ve managed to find a few good deals by digging through the racks — just remember to comparison shop!

Read more about the good, bad and ugly of Macy’s Backstage discount stores and let us know in the comments below if you’ve found any bargains there.

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