While the shape of retail has changed over the centuries, its importance as a centre of community life remains as vital as ever. In this age of technology, shoppers still crave authentic experiences. As global culture expands, consumers seek out places that have the familiarity of home. These factors converge in retail design that values the importance of place and the primacy of the customer experience. In this context, our versatility and Integrated Design Service experience make Doyle + Partners a valued strategic advisor.
Design for Retail – Creating connections
People today live in a connected world that’s fuelled by an anytime/anywhere economy, mobile technology, and social media. But they continue to crave the in-person connections that make everyone feel human. Thoughtful retail design requires a deep understanding of the way brands and people connect and how design impacts customer experience and store performance. It requires insight into the differences—and similarities—in consumers, and a robust network that helps brands localize their design and business strategies. Good design needs to fulfil the innate human need for connection, participation, and sense of belonging that is overlooked too often in our global, mobile, virtual, high-tech world.
Retailers today relate to customers in myriad ways. The heart of the engagement is experiential, where the tangible comes in. The desire for community, authenticity, and a self-curated yet spontaneous flow of activities and events finds full realization in the setting and everything that supports it.
When clients seek greater efficiency and a smarter approach to business strategy what they are really looking for is that sweet spot where physical space becomes a tool for boosting human performance. Great design’s unique offering is how it facilitates desired outcomes by augmenting user behavior.
The retail landscape, has completely changed in the past decade on account of online shopping and the technological advances sustaining it. As consumers have become more accustomed to buying at the click of a mouse, physical retail locations have adapted. Retailers should now offer unique, curated experiences that shoppers can’t find in the online realm. Brick and mortar retail used to emphasize showcasing and storage; today retailers want to elevate the shopping experience to a plane of fun and excitement that was previously unimaginable.
Catering to informed shoppers
Flexible retail space lets retailers move quickly to capitalize on changing technologies. While online shopping has failed to bring the predicted demise of traditional retail, smart phones and Web 2.0 make it easier for shoppers to be better informed. Smart retailers are acknowledging and embracing this.
Today experience, as opposed to ownership, status, or image, is everything, and retailers are experimenting with new ways to attract consumers.
Brands are increasingly setting products apart by offering a premium level of service formerly reserved for the upscale market. The resulting “luxury for the masses” trend makes quality and brand names more accessible and affordable.
As part of the trend towards more luxurious offerings, traditional packaging, often an afterthought for merchandisers and tossed aside by consumers after a purchase, is giving way to more modern approaches. Sustainable and multifunctional packaging is the rise.
RETAIL BUILDING TYPES
Boutiques Cafes – Department Stores – Retail Stores – Restaurants – Car Showrooms – Beauty Salons
10 MISTAKES TO AVOID WHEN STARTING AN RETAIL OR HOSPITALITY PROJECT – DOWNLOAD NOW
Lifestyle choices and aspirations drive the retail sector, whether it’s a store, cafe or Salon. The language of retailing is experiential, speaking to people’s desire for self-expression, for community, for authenticity, for connection.
Before embarking on the procurement of your new Retail or Hospitality project, it is important to ask yourself a series of questions.
Below are a few more tips on what makes a great shopping experience to get you started ?
The most prominent response to this challenge is trying to create an ‘authentic’ experience. People (too often described as ‘consumers’) are actually seeking a giving or caring experience. Authentic is overused, the key is in forming a relationship with the customer, and I think honesty and a sense of caring are true differentiators. As we evolve, the trend will be to have fewer, better designed products, and the sense of caring that goes along with it. The internet can help make a decision, but nothing can substitute for a nicely curated selection and a shop keeper who knows their stuff. It’s the conversation with that shop keeper that elevates the customer’s appreciation and moves the dialogue from transactional to relationship.
1. Let your colourful side show – Some retailers are under the misconception that they have to have a boring space full of neutral colours and accents. While it may be wise to have a few neutral walls if your merchandise is very colourful, don’t be afraid to liven things up with various shades around your retail store. Colour keeps a space looking cheerful and inviting, two characteristics you likely want your employees to notice in your shop. So get creative, just don’t overdo it.
2. Be mindful of your lighting – Lighting is a critical aspect in any store. This is something else you should discuss with your interior or lighting designer. If you choose not to hire a professional for advice, try a variety of lighting options and positions. Take pictures of the different set-ups so you can determine which one showcases your merchandise the best.
3. Keep it clean – Do your best to keep your store as clean and organized as possible. Customers don’t want to have to rummage around the shop to find what they are looking for because it is cluttered and unattractive to the eye. Remember, sometimes it’s better to have fewer products on the sales floor than to have a sales floor that’s a big mess.
4. Make check-out accessible – Now it’s time to figure out where your point of sales terminal will go. It’s important your customers will be able to pay in an area that is easy to get to and again, has great lighting. Make this area look especially inviting to encourage spending and increase profits.
Retail is a highly competitive arena. When you are designing a shop, it is important to keep in mind that the environment plays a key role in your marketing and sales efforts. Consider the interior design of the store as your silent salesman putting people in the mood to buy.