Although online businesses are increasingly reaching higher market shares, physical shops and establishments still have the largest percentage of total sales.
Therefore, those of us who have physical shops must take the utmost care of our presentation. This involves taking into account all those factors that will make customers more willing to buy and to buy more.
There are a lot of unique approaches to store interior design. And what’s more, we have some design strategies suitable for all types of retail shops, which lead to a better image and therefore more revenue for our business.
Not long ago we looked at the common aspects of any retail business, with the aim of helping boutiques, stores, neighbourhood shops and retail outlets to be more successful and thrive in today’s digital age.
From conveying brand values and creating unique experiences in our business to creating a better corporate image with stationery, labels or signage. Every little detail is important and can make a difference. Here you will find some basic concepts that will help you to improve your business image.
We’re going to cover some of the most important concepts when designing the interior of your business to attract more customers to your shop, get them to show more interest in your products and ultimately make a purchase.
The reception area is the first space that prospective customers walk into when they enter your shop and usually consists of the first two to five metres of space, depending on the size of your premises or office.
This is also the first contact the customer makes with your business. This is where your prospective customer gets a first impression, so you only get one shot at it.
They will make critical judgements, they will have a perception of how cheap or expensive your shop feels, the organisation of the place, the lighting, the smells, sounds and colours. Since they are in an analytical mode, customers are more likely to absent themselves from any products, signage, or carts you place there.
A the right
Studies show that 90% of consumers, when entering a shop, turn right unconsciously. The first wall they see is often referred to as a “key panel” and becomes an area of high visual impact, which gives a potential to the products placed there. Be sure to pay special attention to what you choose to display there.
Make sure you get your customer’s attention with those products that are highly profitable or in high demand.
Create a route
The path through the interior of your shop depends a lot on the size and layout of each business, but knowing that your customers want to turn right, your next job is to make sure they continue to walk through your shop to get the maximum level of exposure for what you offer. Not only does this increase the chances of completing sales, but it can be an effective way of strategically controlling the flow of traffic inside your shop.
Most shops use a circular path starting on the right to get them to the back of the shop and back to the front. Some will make it even easier by covering the path with different textures.
IKEA is a specialist on this point about how to design the interior of a shop correctly. They use arrows but, if you can afford it, a more subtle option is to use geometric patterned rugs. The photograph at the beginning of this point serves as an example.
Another way to create a route or mark a path is to place an attraction at the end of an aisle. Something like a specials section at the other end of the aisle will motivate your customers to make the full journey.
Create a seating area
This point is true that it requires your shop to have a larger space. If it’s a small store you should consider having this space near the checkout counter.
After working for so long in your shop, the last thing you want is for your customers not to take the time to look carefully at everything you have to offer. One way to combat this is with “rest areas”, “checkout areas” or “speed bumps”.
In essence, this can be anything that gives customers a visual break. From here, the customer can see the shop from another perspective. It’s also the ideal place to display some printed brochures or business cards.
Most retailers properly implement the use of what are known as “hot sellers”, which are those products that are bought more on impulse than by a considered decision. This is often seen in supermarkets. But also clothing shops put some accessories or perfumes here.
It is best to place the “most in-demand” products at eye level.
Finally, we advise changing these products weekly or regularly enough to give the image that there is always something new for customers who come back time and time again.
That the incoming customer doesn’t cross paths with the outgoing customer
You may or may not be aware of something known as the “brush effect”, coined by Paco Underhill, an expert in consumer behaviour.
He discovered that customers, especially women, will stop looking for the product they are looking for if in the opposite direction comes another customer who hasn’t found something.
This is true even if the customer has a strong interest in the product.
A simple way to avoid this problem is to create aone-way path. Otherwise, make sure your aisle is wide enough so that the customer can retain adequate personal space when browsing for products.
You can also make your shop comfortable by incorporating some sort of waiting area with comfortable seating and benches that will encourage customers to spend more time in your shop, especially if a shopper is accompanied by someone who is not interested in making a purchase or children.
You can include a radar that counts the entrances and exits of your shop. You can also count the number of flyers, brochures or cards you hand out each day. Or you can measure the dwell time in your shop.
With all that data, you can draw conclusions about the advantages and disadvantages of various options, but you may still end up confused.
The best option for keeping track of this is from the box itself. A good rule to remember is that the checkout should be located in a natural passage place in the shopping experience or the path you have purposely created and designed.
So if your customers enter and turn to the right and you get them to circulate from start to finish through your shop, you’ll find that the left side at the front is probably the ideal place for your cash register. However, this decision also depends on the size and design of the shop itself.
You will also want to bear in mind that if you do not have staff, it will be important that you are able to keep track from that point, especially for loss prevention (pilferage or theft). Other tips to keep in mind when designing your cash register include:
- Have enough space to store your customers’ bags, jackets or belongings while they shop.
- Display corporate material that strengthens your brand image.
- Motivate “last minute” purchases so they stock up on items they like but weren’t yet clear they wanted to buy.
- Be polite in person by asking questions like “Did you find everything you were looking for?” or “Do you need anything else?” In response to this question you often make new sales that you would not have otherwise made.
Designing the interior of your shop is a never-ending process. You can always be changing things around, to create different experiences.
Get your family, friends or acquaintances to give you feedback. Finally, keep your customers in mind and observe what attracts them, what to avoid and how they move, then determine if they match your objectives. Keep your eyes and ears open, so that you are sure to create a retail environment that is good for both you and your customers.