Making a store look brand new can be a challenging experience for retailers. There are all of the upfront costs associated with paying contractors and having the materials shipped to the site. Then there are the rest of the fees that need to be paid to architects, designers, and legal experts, not to mention the disruption.
It all sounds rather bad. But there are benefits to a significant remodeling of your store. The customer experience is much improved, and staff can be uplifted and reinvigorated. If you’re honest, your store is probably well overdue an upgrade. Take it to the next level with the following advice.
Engage The Senses
Fifty years ago, state of the art retail outlets were little more than extensions of warehouses. Sure, they had a counter and a cashier. But the products themselves were hardly arranged in the most aesthetic way. They were more like today’s “dark supermarkets” than what we would recognize as retail outlets. But as design has changed, so too have the stores themselves. Research shows that the appearance of stores is the most important factor determining their success. Customers really care about what stores look like when they’re making their purchasing decisions. And they’re more likely to pass on the message about your store to family and friends if it has a great atmosphere.
Right now the evidence says that stores should attempt to engage as many senses as possible. That means making use of smell, lighting, music and color to entice customers to stay. Outlets that don’t focus on these elements will suffer in the long run and fail to attract a regular stream of business.
Know Your Goals
Remodeling a store will require a relatively significant chunk of business funding. So you need to know well in advance your expected return on investment. Decide, along with your partners, what an acceptable ROI would be. Most retailers aim for a 30 percent increase in sales following a remodel. Will this increase in sales offset your initial expenditure?
Remember, the evidence favoring sound design is strong. Back in 2003, the Danish Design Center found that firms which focused on design saw 22 percent more revenue growth than controls. There’s also a good chance that remodeling your store will have an indirect effect on your bottom line. Not only will the customer experience be better, but the brand will also become stronger too. Remodeling stores is a great way to communicate to customers the type of company you are. It’s also a good way for you to put pressure on your competitors, and to do something different.
Use Tech To Your Advantage
The term “retail 3.0” has become something of a buzzword in the retail sector. It’s the idea that the retail and digital worlds are on an inevitable collision course. In fact, in many ways, they already have. Take “webrooming” for instance. This is where shoppers look online for a product first before going into a store to check it out in person. According to data from Google, 70 percent of shoppers do this already. Thus, retailers need to start thinking about using WiFi, RFID, and beacons to assist customers.