Brick and mortar retail is still relevant. As noted in our last blog, e-commerce is here to stay but so are brick and mortar stores. The key to success in modern retail with brick and mortar locations is creating an experience that people can’t get online.
One component of having a memorable customer experience is the design and layout of your store. Remodeling your store to create an enhanced customer experience can produce great results for your business.
The COVID-19 pandemic has actually caused a lot of business owners to remodel or consider remodeling soon. Due to a lot of changes in retail due to the pandemic some stores that are remodeling are actually downsizing areas that used to take up a larger foot print of the store that are no longer as profitable i.e. hot and cold bars, premade food, bulk food, etc. You can read more about what some retailers have done to adjust to less profits in these areas here in an article from Wholefoods Magazine.
It’s important when you consider remodeling that you look at your store from a variety of angles to determine what is working well and what needs improvement. Regardless of what you do, the benefits of a remodel are numerous.
Why Should You Consider Remodeling Your Store?
The way your store is laid out can greatly impact your sales. Effective retail design results in a space that is well laid out with products that can be easily found. It makes browsing enjoyable and helps the customers have a pleasant time while they shop.
The more comfortable your customer is and the more enjoyable their shopping experience with you is, the more time and money they will spend.
Consider how your current floorplan is working for you. This is a great resource on different floor plans to consider. Observe the natural flow of traffic in your store. Keep track of frequently asked questions when customers try to locate products. Do the math and figure out your profits per square foot based on your departments. If you’re losing money in certain areas, it may be time to remove them and likewise if certain areas are booming, they may deserve more space.
Showcase Your Brand
Your physical space says a lot about who you are as a company. Your story, your vision, your philosophy can all be portrayed through your store’s look.
Use your space to be a reflection of your brand. Given that our members are natural products retailers, typically you want your stores to represent health, vitality, and wellbeing. Color selection, decor, and even the bags that you use can speak volumes about who you are as a company and the benefits of shopping with you.
You can print your mission statement on the wall for your customers to see. You can have a nicely placed logo on a focal point in your store. You can have greenery and bright lights that breathe life into your store.
Using your store to tell your story will be a further representation of the benefits your customers are looking for when they shop with you.
Highlight Your Products
Consumers always look to retailers to tell them what products are relevant. Retailers validate trends and drive customers in. We’ve all seen it. Between the CBD craze, elderberry, keto, now immune, people rush into the stores to see if they have a product that is trendy. When you highlight those products, it further validates you as an authority.
A remodel can give you the perfect way to highlight your products in a more effective way. New lighting, different shelves, and your layout all play into this.
The right retail design can showcase your products in such a way as to visually merchandise them. When it comes to the layout of your space, you should ensure that there is enough room to effectively highlight your products so that your customers can instantly observe them. Oftentimes shelves are too crowded or poorly laid out. Another thing to ensure you have is great displays when people first enter your store.
Provide your customers with a logical path through and around your store to enhance their browsing experience and prevent them from having to navigate around obstacles to find the product they are looking for. By doing this, you can showcase the appearance of your products, draw customers in and encourage them to purchase more.
Other things to consider when moving things around is creating ample space in the aisles. No one likes to feel crowded when they shop. In addition, think about the height of your shelves. If your shelves are too tall, it can be hard to shop from them.
We’ve talked about employee retention before, but a workplace that is nicely decorated and laid out is actually an employee benefit! When your store is pleasing to the eye, your employees will feel a sense of pride coming to work each day. If your store is dark and dingy, it can have a negative impact on your staff. The energy that your store gives off while having an impact on staff behavior for the good or for the bad.
Encourage people to visit your store through your digital presence. You don’t have to sell products online but you should use your website to drive traffic to your physical location. If you’re going to spend the money to remodel your store, also consider the necessary investment of bringing your website up to the same level as your store. If you have a beautifully designed website that clearly explains how your business can help improve the lives of your customers, people are going to want to visit you. Breathe the same life and energy into your digital presence as you do in your store.
Remodeling Is Worth The Investment
We get it. Remodels can be very daunting. The time and financial investment are tough pills to swallow. But the return on investment can far exceed the expense if you are strategic. We encourage you to lean on your other SENPA members and reach out to those that have gone before you and had successful remodels. We are a network of people that want to help one another.