Opening a new retail store takes a lot of preparation and research. From the business side to the creative side of things, an entrepreneur and his or her team will have to spend countless hours to ensure that everything is well on track from the retail interior design all the way to the grand opening. While sales projections are rarely on point, there are several ways business owners can prepare and set up their store for success. One of these is ensuring that their space layout is optimal for encouraging customers to spend more time — and money— in the store.
Interior designers, along with data scientists, brand managers, anthropologists, and experience designers have, over the years, uncovered priceless insight into customer behavior and how this can be translated into retail store design.
In this article, we talk about store layouts and how they can be used as an essential sales strategy for your retail shop.
restaurant interior design:
CUSTOMER BEHAVIOR AND SPACE PLANNING
Think of the first 5 to 15 feet of your store as a transition zone, or the decompression zone. While it might seem like a good idea to place your premium offers and items in this area so customers see them right away, studies proved otherwise. Customers have a habit of taking a big, sweeping view of your entire store from this point and as a result, items placed in this area may go unnoticed. Chances are, your most attractive items will be missed when placed here.
From the decompression zone, 90% of people turn right to begin browsing through stores. This will be a great area to put any newly launched items or premium promotions. The right side of your store from the entrance is the place to use to make an impression and capture your target customers.
It is important to study your target customers and apply what you learn to a thoughtful layout design for your retail store.
RETAIL SPACE AND LAYOUTS
Retail square footage is expensive, which is all the more reason to invest in a thoughtful interior layout design that will give your customers a clear path, encourage interaction and discovery, and highlight your products in all the right ways to increase ROI.
Here are four commonly used retail layouts and how they can be perfect for your store:
Think of your local supermarket or pharmacy and you have a classic example of the grid layout. Merchandise is displayed on long racks in between aisles where customers weave up and down whilst browsing. This layout maximizes product display and features prime real estate for impulse purchase items at the end of each aisle.
If your store sells multiple types of items that aren’t naturally grouped together, this layout will be perfect for maximum exposure for each item.
2. LOOP OR RACETRACK
This layout maximizes your vertical space with shelving and uses the space towards the center of the store for display stands, creating a path that encourage customers to loop around the entire shop to view items.
You can also create more unique and irregular loops such as ones used in museums and horror houses or stores like IKEA. A well-designed loop will take customers through a journey that tells your brand’s story or message.
Store layouts are the guide through which your customers interact with your space, and how people experience the store is an integral part of branding.