How customers experience your merchandise is determined by how your store is designed to guide them to interact with it. Repeated analysis of Underhill’s video research demonstrates that customers in the US — women in particular — value their personal space when shopping. “It’s a mix of thoughtful moments — placement of product stories and unassisted digital experiences throughout the [store] footprint — mixed with sales people that help consumers make decisions quickly and effectively.”, “I think alongside [customer] flow is understanding the sales data to help better inform where you want to [attract] the customer and what the overall experience is from the front to the back of the store,” says Rodriguez. The grid layout is the most common store layout you’re going to find in retail. “What makes a consumer want to come and repeatedly spend time in a retail store in the digital age will be based on the feeling you get when you are shopping,” says Walzer. Store Formats Starbucks stores come in a variety of formats that are designed to serve people, not just coffee. It’s creating pride for residents and a sense of joy for travelers, who are also customers that purchase Sub Pop gear at the store.”. American Society of Interior Designers (ASID): International Retail Design Conference (IRDC). Be aware of where you “lead” shoppers. The area just outside of the transition zone is where most retailers make a first impression. There is no way to measure whether someone saw a great campaign or experienced a digital innovation you created and if that led them to buy months down the road. All Rights Reserved Smartsheet Inc. A Step-By-Step Guide to Planning Store Layouts that Maximize Your Space, Top Store Layout Design Strategies that Impact the Customer Experience, Retail Store Layout Design and Planning Resources, Improve Retail Store Operations with Smartsheet for Retail, How to Survive and Thrive in Retail Management, Research shows that, with this type of store layout, The Art and Science of Retail Merchandising. For this reason, the free flow layout is sophisticated in its simplicity. For example, customers have the flexibility to navigate through a grid layout for their basic groceries but feel compelled to search the angular displays featuring high-margin wine, beer, and imported cheeses. The grid layout places counters and shelves in long rows throughout a store, which makes shoppers go up and down the various aisles created. Large grocery store chains also successfully combine mixed store layout elements. Ebster recommends this layout for a larger retail space (over 5,000 square feet) and encourages a clear and visible loop for customer flow. Jump-start new projects and processes with our pre-built sets of templates, add-ons, and services. People have brand loyalty and want to see differentiation and a reason to move from their comfort zone.” The Smartsheet platform makes it easy to plan, capture, manage, and report on work from anywhere, helping your team be more effective and get more done. It is essential to understand your customer flow and the general patterns of navigation in your specific retail environment before you can optimize customer experience and plan a strategic store layout. “They do a great job with a mix of digital innovations, retail pros and the Geek Squad. One example is to keep design functional with the overall space. We shall examine the variety of options that exist 2. “Stores need to be thoughtful in their layout, and have clear zones so navigation is easy. Many companies make the mistake of copying what others are doing, which creates more confusion. The window display requires careful attention to lighting, size of display units, type of merchandise featured, props (like mannequins), and signage. Plus, a basic straight design helps pull customers towards featured merchandise in the back of the store. Customers can move quickly through an efficient floor space using standard fixtures and displays. It guarantees that customers will walk past everything in the store. Keep in-store signs and messaging consistent with the brand voice and use standard fonts and colors that are easy to identify and read with your lighting. Materials that are “authentic and have some warmth to them” work best (real wood versus laminate, stone or marble versus coated plastic, glass versus acrylic). Our world-class consulting team is here to help your organization realize the lasting advantage of Smartsheet. Empower your people to go above and beyond with a flexible platform designed to match the needs of your team — and adapt as those needs change. Retailers should keep signs fresh and updated based on the merchandise offered, the season, or specific promotions. If you have multiple floors, account for the preferences of first floor shoppers by using this space for the feature or high-margin merchandise in your retail mix. Visual merchandising brings together the overall environment of the retail store. To know your customer is to know your retail business. “For a store footprint [design] within a mall, a commercial shopping area, or [inside] a third party retailer (for example Best Buy or Target), understanding the key players around your area and their sales tactics should be a priority. Walking up and down stairs or using elevators and escalators to navigate a store hurts customer flow. Product layout 3. This might include checking prices and inventory availability, or using their device to find physical store location and hours. Along with your store layout design, displays set the stage for your customer’s overall experience when navigating the store. Careful selection of the type and placement of displays is crucial to the overall retail strategy of using space management and store design to influence customer flow and in-store behavior. Mixed Floor Plan. In this video, we will discuss the basic store layouts in the retail industry. Consider your overall retail strategy and store layout design prior to selecting your store location. Celebrated for its economy of floor space, the straight plan uses store walls, corner spaces, custom retail displays, and other shelving fixtures to maximize every possible selling point on the floor. When the checkout is located in the center and possibly raised up, the diagonal layout offers better security and loss prevention due to the extra sightline effect. Potent Pairings: Sidekick and Endcap Displays. Department stores use a compelling mix of straight, diagonal, and angular concepts, among other design elements, to create a dynamic flow through a range of departments featuring a variety of merchandise. Location of a Store: (a) Centralised Store: In small factories, it is desirable to centralise the materials so that they may be brought under the control of one store-keeper and the store-room should be as far as possible near the place, where material is to be used. The geometric floor plan gives a trendy and unique look to the store. This is a versatile choice for store design when implemented with another layout style or used as a prominent feature of the retail store. Customers need time, however brief, to adjust to new lighting, smells, the music, and the visual stimulation in the store. Benefits: You can have customers follow a particular pattern while walking in your store, or more easily direct them toward a certain product. Often, this is due to habit or lack of energy to create a new account, enter information, etc.”. In this article, you’ll learn about how retail customers predictably behave, why this behavior matters, and how you can influence it with a thought out store layout design. Ebster encourages retailers to use their observations to discover the problems and opportunities unique to their environment. These aisles send positive signals to shoppers and positively impact customer flow and merchandise interaction. The mixed store layout uses design elements from multiple layouts to create a flexible option for retailers. Small stores can benefit from this space management option, and it is excellent for self-service retailers because it invites more movement and better customer circulation. The purpose of fixtures is to coordinate your store layout and influence customer flow and interactions. “Create memorable moments to build and keep fans.”. It is a strategic element in retail management that distinguishes a retailer from the competition. After you identify how your customers navigate your entire retail space, turn your attention back to the entrance. All machines performing similar type of operations are grouped at one location in the process layout e.g., all lathes, milling machines, etc. When teams have clarity into the work getting done, there’s no telling how much more they can accomplish in the same amount of time. Loading and unloading areas, which are normally located outside the warehouse or incorporated into it, are those that trucks and vehicles transporting and distributing goods have direct access to.In a well-organized warehouse, it is useful to separate these activities from the rest of the installation, allowing sufficient space for loading and unloading. Also, treat displays as flexible, cost-effective investments and ask your product manufacturers and suppliers about providing low-cost options specific to their products and brands. If you’re geared towards a millennial demographic, or if you’ve just set yourself up as a hip and trendy brand, consider using the geometric layout. Successful retailers do so by creating value and delivering a differentiated customer experience. We know there’s a lot to think about, so we’ll take you through some of the most common retail store floor plans and highlight the benefits of each one. She recommends using signage that encourages overall shopping (for example, placing old and iconic imagery - specifically for tech stores - towards the front of the store). Ebster recommends looking at visual merchandising from the customer’s perspective. Large or small, most retail stores use one of three basic types of retail store layouts. “Amazon Go and Amazon.com provide ease of shopping at your fingertips without the hardship of dealing with, well, anyone,” says Rodriguez. A couple examples of leveraging interactive video display include the following: Specialized sensors provide data and interactive customer experiences using video and internet of things (IoT) technology. They are the graphic representation of the retailer's brand and merchandise. 2. Fixed position layout 5. Combination layout 4. Underhill is adamant that nothing of value to the retailer, not high-margin merchandise, prominent signage, or brand information goes inside this zone. Merchandise is separated by category, and customers are encouraged to interact more intimately with like items in semi-separate areas created by walls, merchandise displays, and fixtures. The prices charged are slightly higher. “Data is essential to creating a memorable and effective experience,” she says. They are designed to create an attractive image for consumers. Loop Layout • Loop Layout is a type of store layout in which a major customer aisle begins at the entrance, loops through the store, usually in the shape of a circle, square, ar rectangle, and then 37 returns the customer the front of the store. For physical retail stores, this experience is connected to the customer’s surroundings — how they navigate the store’s environment, and the flow of attention they spend on your merchandise and messaging. Since the “lily pads” mean that not as many products can be displayed at once (again, making customers think they’re getting the last one of something) much of your excess stock will have to be kept in a back room or underneath the angular displays. Celebrated for its economy of floor space, the straight plan uses store walls, corner spaces, custom retail displays, and other shelving fixtures to maximize every possible selling point on the floor. “Make it fun and easy for people to share their stories on social media,” she says. • Advantages • … One way to do this is to design a digital and physical retail environment that captures the overtaxed attention of consumers today. Browse store layout templates and examples you can make with SmartDraw. Boutiques typically use more creative layouts that allow for businesses to highlight different products. Avoid narrow aisles and corridors when planning your store layout and strive to protect customers from what Underhill coined as the “butt-brush effect.”. Concentrate on how to create community and engagement with store design. Grid flow pattern layout In other words, they are designed to impact the customer flow and bring attention to merchandise in a consistent, familiar environment. Research shows that, with this type of store layout, IKEA achieves a uniform and efficient customer flow that promotes higher sales. Straight Retail Floor Plan They … According to Ebster, the boutique layout (also called shop-in-the-shop or alcove layout) is  Discount store. The word “display” comes from the French word “deployer”, which means “to unfold.” Far from being exclusive to clothing, however, promotional displays help “unfold” the merchandise you offer to the customer. The following list of solutions offers diagramming tools that let you customize existing store layout templates and explore different design ideas. Then we … “Studies show that video on home or product pages have conversion rates between 80-100 percent.” Rodriguez recommends using video in “short, snackable bites.” In addition to online advertising and store branding opportunities on social media platforms like Facebook and Snapchat, the reduced cost of digital displays and user friendly digital video tools provides retailers with creative, affordable ways to design their stores to leverage video. Lighting specialists provide expertise in the appropriate types of lighting for specific store layouts, based on natural light exposure, and can recommend solutions that suit budgets and environmentally conscious business models. According to Ebster, there are multiple advantages to the grid layout, including the following: However, the downside of this layout is the lack of aesthetics and the “sterile and uninspiring” environment often associated with its use. Retail stores look less sterile in the free flow design, and merchandise may seem more intriguing. The foundation for this strategy is the design of your store floor plan. Nordstrom, for example, uses several layouts to differentiate between various branded shops that live within the store. In general, fixtures are less versatile than displays and in-store design layouts, but when planned carefully, they become a defining part of a retail space. Process layout. Geographic location of the retail store (real estate), Size of the building and length of the walkways accessible from the entrance and exit, Use of furniture and exterior space for people to gather and interact, Style of architecture of the retail building, Color of paint and choice of exterior building materials, Design of the physical entrance and exterior window displays. Finally, follow your customer flow through the transition zone and around the retail space in a counterclockwise pattern. Building fans and purveyors of quality takes time and not every campaign or interactive experience you install will hit the mark,” adds Rodriguez. As an example, Ebster uses furniture retailer IKEA to demonstrate the use of the forced-path store design. Jaina Rodriguez is a Creative Director of the Integrated Design-Retail Design Studio at Microsoft. Not seeing rows and rows of stock subliminally encourages customers to “buy now” – it’s ideal for retailers with higher-priced items. Customers also respond to where products are placed. See why Smartsheet is the platform you need to drive achievement, no matter the scale of your ambition. The loop layout lends itself to more than one — a loop on the outside and grid or free-flow in the centre. The downsides of the boutique layout include the following factors: Reducing the total display space for merchandise with inefficient space management, Encouraging too much exploration of separate areas within the store. The next step moves beyond the transition zone and shifts the focus on how to leverage a customer’s tendency to navigate the retail environment. Rodriguez believes that the more a retailer does to simplify purchasing, the more value they add to the customer experience. Printing, Manufacturing, and Product Pack-Out, Common Mistakes in Retail Display Designs and How to Avoid Them, The Importance of Speed and Quick Turnaround Time for Custom Displays. This design is often used by specialty stores between 2,000 and 10,000 square feet in size. She adds a reminder to retailers about the importance of aligning the desired experience of the target customer with retail management and the overall retail strategy. Underhill popularized the “invariant right” and proved the effectiveness of the technique with thousands of hours of video. Clothing and apparel stores use a variety of environmental merchandising strategies (for example, music, scents, and artwork) with the geometric layout to enhance the customer experience. This includes using hashtags in messaging, or on merchandise displays, creating “set-designing” zones, and favoring natural light with “unique designs that make for cool backdrops or host events.”. There are four basic layout types: process, product, hybrid, and fixed position. It’s based on a single main aisle running from the front of the store to the back. Diagonal layouts may be a wise lay out choice to use depending on the location of your store and the cost of your merchandise. To counter this, Ebster recommends effective signage to guide customers and create a “cognitive map” of the store. How customers interact with your merchandise affects their purchase behavior. Benefits: This layout allows you to keep a close eye on your products, which may be useful if you sell high-end, valuable merchandise. Try Smartsheet for free, today. “If [the design] is too loud, has obstructed or confusing pathways, which some retailers use as a sales tactic, no rhyme or reason [...], it is not conducive to customers spending more time [in store] or converting sales.”, A store’s layout design is not an isolated advantage for retailers. For example, she believes the video game section could be designed to be more cohesive and less scattered in different spaces. Once you research and understand how customers navigate your store, you can start influencing how they interact with the merchandise. She is adamant that store design is important and should not be overlooked when designing the customer experience. Each shop is individual and takes the environment and city into account when building a new store. However, the drawback is the simplicity: Depending on how a customer enters the store and moves past the transition zone, it may be more difficult to highlight merchandise or draw them to a specific location. As Malcolm Gladwell writes in his feature article, “The Science of Shopping,” “the clothes have to match the environment.”, Walzer recommends that retailers deciding how to plan for visual merchandising elements that work for their concept consider their customer flow in a way that guides the customer through “the path to purchase.”, “Aesop is killing it right now,” says Walzer, when asked about retailers that highlight the importance of store design. This area can be integrated into the warehouse or be independent. Walzer recommends minimal, clean, and uncluttered fixtures, and modular signage areas to promote offers. A free flow layout rejects typical design patterns and styles commonly used to influence customer behavior. What Are Primary And Secondary Packaging? The mixed floor plan takes into consideration angular, diagonal and straight layout to give rise to the most functional store lay out. Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Sensors: According to Rodriguez, RFID technology is becoming more popular as retailers experiment with more uses for the sensors including inventory management. A variation of the grid layout, the design helps guide customers to the checkout area. However, setting aside different times of the day to make in-store observations in person and recording your notes is a step in the right direction for identifying customer flow patterns. But the reality is those authentic and real moments stick with people and it takes time [...] The focus should be continuing to be authentic and real — negotiating and editing with successes and failures, but never wavering on those two things.”. Thus, in proces… Free your team from content sprawl with Brandfolder, an intuitive digital asset management platform. It is kept open for long hours. 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