4 imperatives for an impactful store design


Imperative 1: Design the entire store keeping in mind order picking

Curbside pickup, BOPIS and other omnichannel offerings are now the benchmark, so retailers need to encourage traffic flows that allow both order fulfillment and in-store navigation without interfering. the ones with the others.

The sidewalk in particular triggers a transformation of the in-store experience. Parking lots and store exteriors should be designed to minimize the distance between associates and curbside waiting customers – without feeling unsafe for foot traffic.

“Retailers can redesign stores to make them more efficient at pickup, for example by locating pickup counters near the entrance,” said John Harmon, senior analyst at Coresight Research in an interview with Retail Contact Points. “They may also offer dedicated parking spaces located near the front door or the pickup counter, in addition to curbside pickup. The layout of the store can also be optimized to accommodate both pickers and buyers.

Imperative 2: Connect consumers to the store through digital experiences

The modern store exceeds its physical limits, especially when it meets the needs of security-conscious shoppers. Look for augmented reality tools, live streaming, and social selling to take the experience to the next level.

“While AR should continue to be advanced, clothing can also learn about beauty and some of the technologies it has harnessed, such as live streaming,” said Katie Thomas, head of the Kearney Consumer Institute. “Brand Ambassadors demonstrating how a product fits, moves and feels can provide a temporary advantage as dressing room technology is developed further.”

Thomas noted that another important area to watch out for is virtual dating, which has been widely adopted during store closings, but has since become central to some brands’ e-commerce experiences.

Imperative 3: Balance security and immersive experiences

While many post-pandemic store design strategies aim to get shoppers in and out as quickly as possible, retailers can’t afford to overlook the importance of letting shoppers take their time and browse. Even a simple trip to the grocery store can be a relaxing experience for many people, so retailers should make sure their efforts to eliminate friction don’t make shoppers looking for a more traditional trip feel rushed.

“Not all 20 minutes are equal, and while consumers hate standing in line, many people enjoy browsing – which, despite wanting to get in and out of a store, is always a better in-store experience. rather than 20 pages of shoes on a screen, ”Thomas said. “Experiential retail can automate processes that don’t add value to the consumer, completing a very engaging brand experience.

Imperative 4: Always focus on providing fantastic customer service

There is one universal ingredient in a good customer experience: the associate. Even the best technology in the world can be improved by friendly, knowledgeable and enthusiastic employees. Whether it’s helping a newbie with self-checkout or solving a problem with a loyalty app, associates are the heart of the store.

As a result, retailers must ensure that all the technologies and new store features they implement serve and enable associates to do their jobs better.

Download the full tech guide for additional best practices from experts.

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