Five Ways To Create A Customer-Friendly Retail Space

Retail design is a fundamental part of a retail operation and, despite being largely aesthetic in nature, it plays a significant role in the logistics and effectiveness of a shopping experience too. The environment retailers create for customers not only has a substantial impact on impression and reputation but also on sales and efficiency of transactions. A well-designed store, it is understood, will lend itself to greater profit.

There are a number of ways in which retail design benefits both visual style and operational efficacy and, to support the knowledge of high street retailers, we’re sharing five of the most important ways retailers can create a customer-friendly retail space with both aesthetics and sales in mind.

Navigation

It isn’t solely signs and posters that help to direct customers around retail spaces, though they do help, but it is also lighting and retail furniture placement. Spotlights, for example, are an excellent way of highlighting both hero products and points of interest, creating a stepping stone effect for customers who will see highlighted areas of the store as positional markers.

As such, when designing the layout of a store, it is important to place assets with both style and customer navigation in mind. The most successful store designs will be able to encourage customer flow without any signs at all.

Space

Overwhelming a customer with design and retail furniture is counterintuitive since lack of space is understood to generate stress among shoppers. Therefore, it is important that retailers design with space in mind. This doesn’t mean that products must be stored away but simply that they must be presented in space-efficient designs, such as being mounted vertically on slatwall instead of spread across horizontal planes.

Audio

There has been a great deal written on the subject of music in retail and, while there remain a number of theories on the ideal background anthem for shopping, there is general agreement that a space’s value is significantly affected by music.

It is therefore crucial that music playing in a store is not a neglected decision and is, instead, one that emphasises the values and tone of a brand.

Rest

There is a correlation within retail between the time a customer spends in a shop and the amount they spend. The longer shoppers spend within a retail space, the more they will generally purchase. As such, it is not counterintuitive for retailers to create respites within a retail space, such as seating areas for customers to take a moment’s rest. Doing so will allow them and encourage them to spend a greater deal of time inside.

Efficiency

There has been a theory within retail design that encouraging customers through non-essential areas, those that do not meet their original intentions for entering the store, might encourage customers to spend more. However, while certain shoppers might find an unexpected purchase, many will be fatigued by the extra ground that needs to be covered to make their purchase.

So, while many interior designers will encourage shopping loops and designs that lead customers around the entire shop, it is preferable to offer efficient checkout experiences instead.