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How to Use Store Design to Increase Customer Flow

Why Customer Flow is Necessary:

Most retail organizations this time of year are preparing their shops for the upcoming holiday seasons. With thousands of people expected to visit retail stores during the holiday season, customer flow will be a major challenge for retailers.

People visit shopping malls and retail stores for different reasons. Shopping is fast becoming a favorite past-time for many people. In order to make the experience pleasant for customers, retailers need to pay serious attention to customer flow in their store.

The ability for customers to move freely from one section to the next, without the perception of hindrance, in a retail store, has become a competitive advantage. When I visited Calvin Klein in Trafford Centre, Manchester for a research I stood at the entrance of the store where I could almost view the entire store.

It is a pretty large store, however, the store is designed in such a way that it looks small but very spacious. This design technique allows customers to basically scan most items in the store at one glance.

What is Customer Flow?

Customer flow is enabling the customer to move freely within a retail store without the perception of difficulty. Your store is a stage for your brand, a display case for your products, and an exceptional three-dimensional experience for your customers. Whatever your business is, the design, style and finish of your store will have a powerful, lasting impact on customer loyalty and purchasing decisions. A customer will visit Tesco rather than Wal-Mart because they know where groceries are located in a particular Tesco.

How to Apply the Principle of Customer Flow:

Navigating the Store:

A good store design solution would be to add some design elements to assist in the movement of traffic through the store; for the sake of convenience as well as to drive higher sales areas. Depending on the theme and season you might want to think of the materials to use, but a path or system needs to be created that will make it easy for customers to navigate your store with lovely scenery and a choice of product display that will persuaded them to buy.

Giving customers signs and directions helps them to familiarize themselves with the environment making it easy for them to locate products.

Steps For Implementing Customer Flow:

Follow the steps below to design a store design blueprint incorporates customer flow in order to increase sales:

Step 1 - Ensure your retail store is tidy. A tidy store creates a perception of spaciousness.

Step 2 - Change store themes and colour schemes periodically to reflect either season or promotion. This will result in curiosity and increase customer desire to walk around the store.

Step 3 - Create a mechanism for customer interaction with the appropriate products. This is a smart way of increasing sales; for example in a toy store, create sufficient space for the kids to play with toys (this is essentially a try-before-you-buy scenario).

Step 4 - Ensure you incorporate adequate signage into the store design as this makes it easy for customers to locate products.
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