Two Successful Ways to Improve Customer Traffic Flow in Retail Stores

By Steve Di Orio
Posted in Store Design
On January 25, 2012

The purpose of your retail should be to guide customers through the store to not only get them to the products they’re looking for but also to expose them to as many product-containing store fixtures as possible to encourage additional buying. Two successful customer flows in retail stores are the Racetrack and the Power Aisle approach.

The Racetrack Approach for Retail Store Traffic Flow

Racetrack Traffic Pattern for Retail by Handy Store FixturesDesigned for two-way retail traffic flow, the Racetrack pattern creates a circular flow, leading your customers from the front door, around your store, and to the checkout counter.

This type of pattern is designed to maximize the number of end caps along the store traffic route that will entice customers further into store departments, encourage them down the aisles of store fixtures, and make them want to stop to check out the specialty circular display racks.

Departments set up with short runs of store shelving (12 to 24 feet) that lead customers to wall units or power aisles, or another racetrack. Higher margin items are placed in the center. Display cases, specialty racks, POPs, etc. are sprinkled throughout the customer flow in retail stores.

The Power Aisle Approach for Retail Store Floor Plan

Another retail store traffic flow pattern is the Power Aisle approach.Racetrack Traffic Pattern for Retail by Handy Store Fixtures

The only difference between the Power Aisle and the Racetrack is that the store fixture aisles go from corner to corner of the retail store’s floor plan.

Thus, the store fixtures set up off the main aisle are still short runs of 12 to 24 ft., with interesting store fixtures arrangements in larger departments based off of these runs, and wall units around the perimeter of the main customer flow in the retail store.

The traffic pattern, as with the Racetrack, also leads customers to the checkout counter, maximizing the customer flow.

If you are noticing that your retail store traffic flow is somehow stuck - there’s a bottleneck, or customers are up and down the same aisles without turning to see high-profile end caps, there is no time like now to consider customer flow in your retail store.

Have questions about your store layout? Handy Store Fixtures offers store planning services and considers the best methods to improve your retail store traffic flow. Call us for help at 1-800-631-4280.

Steve Di Orio

Steve Di Orio


Steve has been with Handy Store Fixtures for over 15 years. After becoming the Marketing Manager in 2006, he was named Director of Marketing. Steven earned his MBA from Montclair State University with a specialization in Digital Marketing in 2019. When not at work, he loves to travel, play golf, exercise, and talk all things search engine marketing and retail display tips.