Following the end of year celebrations, high street stores will most often turn to sales to help clear stock and boost takings during the sleepier month of January. Typically, this helps to boost early year figures and set retail businesses on the right track for their annual targets. There are, however, a number of other changes and initiatives that can be implemented, those that improve customer satisfaction.
Customer satisfaction is an important element to consider when managing a retail business, especially as brick and mortar stores seek to further distinguish themselves from eCommerce alternatives. The experience a customer might have on the high street, whether with a helpful staff member or in admiration of a store’s display, can be wholly impressive, ensuring that their returning custom is assured.
In certain historical retail design, intensity has been preferential, with studies showing that more upbeat music and vibrant imagery is associated with increased sales. This evidence, however, has only been found in certain types of shopping experiences, typically supermarkets and groceries. It is actually believed to be detrimental to stores where browsing is less of an obligation, that is, customers don’t have set shopping lists they need to fulfil.
Instead, if you want to encourage a greater spend per head and keep customers happy, then you should encourage slowness. This can be done with calm atmospheres, seating areas, and softer lighting. When customers are able to feel unrushed, they will be drawn to spend greater amounts of time and money in-store.
It can feel overwhelming to be faced with an abundance of information, a factor that commonly leads to ugly or clinical store design. Alternatively, it can be just as problematic for a store to offer too little guidance to its customers, leading to disorientation.
As a retailer, direction design should be considered and worked into your store’s space naturally. Wall displays and slatwall shelving can cleverly double as a navigation tool just as freestanding displays can serve to orient customers organically, without detracting from the items they display.
There has been a push, following the success of a few key businesses, toward locality in retail stores. By focussing on the interests and demands of local shoppers, stores have been able to transform and boost their sales. An essential part of this is training store representatives to be experienced in the product that they’re selling.
By instilling this knowledge, especially as to how brands and products can support the local area, customers are far more likely to find their needs met in-store.
Store design is an essential part of the shopping experience. Products are important but should never compromise the opportunity to exemplify a brand or its quality. As such, effort must be made to curate an atmosphere and aesthetic that advertises and communicates a brand message. Additionally, with the uptake of social media and an ever greater reliance upon word of mouth stores would do well to ensure their stores are made ideal for sharing images.