Retail Customer Experience: Five Signs a Retail Store Needs a Makeover
Bob Phibbs, The Retail Doctor
a special arrangement, presented here for discussion is a summary of a
current article from Retail Customer Experience, a daily news portal
devoted to helping retailers differentiate the shopping experience.
When a store
first opens, everything is fresh — the paint, the signs, the racks and
all of the merch. Now, however, many years later, the store may be still
chugging along, but that once shiny layer of paint is now faded, the shelves
are chipped, the merch isn’t all fresh.
As new stores
have opened over the past several years, they have upped the bar, and although
an older store may still be completely functional, it may be turning off
potential customers. Here are five questions retailers
need to ask themselves to see if their store needs a redesign.
terms of organization, how do you conform to customers’ natural traffic
patterns? In North America, people walk into a business and turn to the
right, walking counter-clockwise through a store. If the cash wrap desk
is on the right, in front, customers constantly have to cross against
other customers. This limits and degrades the shopping experience for
your store lack consistency? Are some signs in color, some hand written,
some black and white? Elements like paint colors, fonts on signage and
overall look should show consistency throughout a store because it shows
an attention to detail.
your merchandise scream sensory overload? If everything is stacked to
the gills, all on shelving, all lit the same, nothing will stand out.
The store could be overwhelming customers who are trying to figure out
what to look at. Information overload will prevent sales because it trips
can’t figure this out, I’m an idiot” switch and they leave.
your store look old? Just like hairstyles, jean styles and lapels, styles
change, and so do stores. Whatever style a store was in ’03 probably
isn’t what’s hot right now. Since great retail is like an idealized home,
a store can take its cues from magazines, TV shows and even the majors
who have spent a lot of money trying to figure out how to look “new.”
your display areas the same as they’ve always been? Eighty percent of
sales tend to come from the first third of a store, so all the “wants” should
be highlighted at the front and all the “needs” in the back with the
Questions: What are some signals that a store needs a makeover? What
are the most common design issues in older stores? What questions do
think stores need to be asking themselves when exploring a redesign?