DOES YOUR RETAIL NEED SOME THERAPY?

Do you have a lot of customers walking in… and then walking out? Well it may have a whole lot more to do with your store, not your product offering. Over 70 percent of all purchase decisions are made in-store, and this means environments matter.

It’s a tough job to create a specific atmosphere. Whether it’s calm, quirky or disruptive; shoppers should feel comfortable enough to linger, enjoy browsing aimlessly, and ultimately, purchase something.

Here are five crucial elements of a retail space that sells:

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION

Unfortunately, Phil Spencer and Kirstie Allsopp aren’t here to help you choose the right spot, but it’s true what they say. Be careful where you set up shop. Choose a space that reflects your brand image and is nearby other business that complements yours. The right neighbourhood is the first step to luring in potential customers.

ENTER IF YOU DARE

The ‘just passing by’ consumers will be drawn to you like a moth to a flame. Large display windows with beautiful displays will entice customers to take more than just a few steps inside. A glimpse of a well-designed interior from the outside has the same effect. It is important to have a spacious entrance way enabling customers to pause and take in the store’s layout without the immediate clutter. Less is more.

CRUCIAL COLOURS

Eighty-five percent of the reason why shoppers buy one product over another is that of COLOUR. Yes, that’s right. This is still true for interior colours. Too much red can irritate some customers, but when done right it can be energetic. Yellow is optimistic and youthful but also grabs attention. Orange can be quite aggressive. Black can be powerful and sleek, but too much and your customers are in the dark. Your overall colour palette should match your brand identity, so this shouldn’t be too hard to pin down. It is better to go for more timeless design and be able to make a few minor changes later as trends change and evolve.

STRATEGICALLY PLACED

Speaking of clutter, it’s time to strategically organise your store with related products together, which will encourage further spending. I’m talking togs and straw hats. Shoes and socks. Evening and jewellery. And always place your clearance or sale at the back of your store, this will lure them to explore the whole store.

OVERALL EXPERIENCE

Are your employees knowledgeable about what they're selling? Are they approachable? Engagement doesn’t just come from staff; it comes from interactive spaces and displays that allow products to be examined and tested. Encouraging shoppers to feel good about what they are buying is a key selling point. Half of the time this is staff attitude and engagement, and the other is the fitting room. The fitting room is a powerful space and is not to be underestimated. A crappy mirror, lousy lighting and dirty walls can make all the difference. If I feel like crap, I will not be saying yes to the dress.

In the end, let your customers linger and lust over your garments, have a tidy store and don’t go too heavy on the fuchsia. Take these top-selling retail tips and apply them to your retail offering today.

* * *

And now what you have all been waiting for – my joke of the month. A teacher gave her year one students coloured lollies and asked them to guess the flavour of each colour. They all ate a yellow one and squealed ‘LEMON’! They ate a green lolly and called out ‘LIME’! When it came to trying the honey-flavoured candy, all of the children couldn’t identify the taste. “I’ll give you a clue,” said the teacher. “It’s what your mother may sometimes call your father.” A little girl looked up in horror and yelled: “Oh my gosh! They’re assholes!”