Nothing will break your store faster than a confusing layout. Your customers need the ability to find the things they want quickly and efficiently, and if your design is wrong, you will miss sales and lose customers. Thankfully, the opposite is also true. If you have a well-planned layout, your customers will spend more money and be more likely to return when they find something. Read on to learn how to set up your retail store layout.
What’s Your Shopper’s Speed?
The first question you should ask yourself when determining your store layout is how much time your customers want to spend in your store. If you are a convenience, grocery, automotive, or hardware store, the answer is usually not very long. They want to get in, get what they came for, maybe throw a couple of impulse purchases in the cart, and get out. For boutiques, craft and gift stores, however, your customers may come without any plan for what they want to purchase. Instead, they view shopping as an experience and want to browse until they find something they want to buy.
Speedy Shopper Layout
If your customers are in and out, your store layout should guide them to find what they need quickly, but it should also maximize their impulse buy exposure. Gondola shelving and efficient end cap usage are vital to making this layout work. You need to organize similar items together so they can pick the specific item they need while viewing all options, but you should also consider having your highest-margin versions of favorite things on an endcap or other display close to the front of the store. Consider using aisles or a loop design, and look to big retailers like Target and Walmart for your inspiration. (These fixtures can help you maximize space.)
Browser Buyer Layout
If your customers come to your retail store to look around and leisurely browse, a more relaxed and free-flowing layout will be more conducive. Instead of aisles, consider a free-flowing layout that groups similar items in islands and curated nooks throughout the store. Your customers want to feel like they have discovered something so let them wander. But beware! This layout requires trial and error. After your initial setup, watch people walk through your store. Where do they pause? What do they miss? Also, pay attention to what they are asking for help finding. Then, adjust your layout accordingly.
Need more inspiration? Check out these three tips for a successful store layout design. Still not sure what’s best for your store? Let us help plan your store’s layout and design.