When you first decide that you want to open a shop, you probably have plenty of ideas about how you want to use your floor space. You might think that it would be great to arrange the products alphabetically, or by order of size or colour. Maybe you wanted the shelves in a particular style or colour. Whatever you first decided to do, you almost certainly made some changes once your shop opened and you began to understand the practicalities of the retail world.
Preparing a retail fitout isn't as straightforward as you might think, and the design of a store can have a big impact on how profitable it is and whether your business will be successful in the long run.
What makes a good retail fitout?
When you are planning a retail fitout, you will need to balance several competing demands. You will want to ensure that the layout promotes your brand and maximises your profits while at the same time remaining customer-focused so that the design you choose will allow customers to find what they need quickly and move through the store with the minimum of delay.
What features will help the customer?
When a customer enters your store, they are there for a particular purpose. There is something they want to buy, and your goal is to help them to find it and to make their purchase quickly before they become frustrated and leave. You will need to think about the logical order in which you lay out products. You must consider how well the shelving you use keeps the products at eye-level and even whether the lighting in the shop is bright enough to showcase the products without being glaring and uncomfortable.
What features will help you?
With any retail fitout, you will have the opportunity to enhance your brand in the mind of the customer. What image do you want to present to them? If you stock luxury goods, then your shop needs to fit that image and the fixtures and decor must maintain that effect. If you focus on quick service, then you will want to make sure your aisles are wide enough so that customers can move up and down freely and that you include multiple till points so that customers rarely need to queue.
If you advertise using a company logo or colour scheme, then you will want these same features to be prominent within your store so that customers are constantly reminded where they are and what your company can do for them.
When considering a new retail fitout, it would be helpful to hire a specialist shopfitting team.