Heidi Easton of the Shop and Display Equipment Association advises grocery retailers on how to make the most of their store environments to drive sales.

For somebody who has natural design creativity and flair, the art of good store design may be simple. But for most of us, designing an exciting store can be really tough! You may have thousands of different products to display in a compact space. You may be fearful of losing existing customers, or missing a valuable sale and have certainly never considered your store as a work of art before. Does this sound familiar? Then read on.

Setting up a shop is not an easy option these days. The competition is vast, the sophistication and demands are intense and to make matters worse there is still a shortage of confidence among customers. Even the muscles of the multiples, flexed and toned to perfection, are struggling for survival.

The threat of the internet continues to rise having an increasingly detrimental effect on our sales. The supermarkets, also have an ever-increasing customer base as they strive to provide an ever broader product range and are just so convenient!

With so much competition it is amazing that anyone is still trading. Getting the right mix is essential for survival. You must be aware of the trends and be prepared to apply them to your business!

No more cramped, cluttered stores, which is where so many retailers go wrong.  A modern, minimal interior, backed up by good customer service, is the answer and works every time. It gives the customer more space to shop both physically and emotionally and in turn allows the products to stand out, increasing sales and securing repeat business.

The good news is that there are still plenty of people who love to shop, but the bad news is their expectations are even greater! They want to look good, they want the latest trends, they want to keep up with technology and they want the best.

This is where the Shop and Display Equipment Association can help… It has compiled ten top tips for independent retail success, as follows: –

sdea’s top ten tips

1. Strip out the clutter to create a clean and more spacious environment! For a truly unique look, add a feature.

2. Branding is vital – the look of a store must reinforce the overall corporate identity, even if you are an independent. Allow your store to stand out from the crowd!

3. Consider the items that you stock and how they fit together, their colours and styles, what they say and what you want to say to the public.

4. Identify your target market and aim your product displays and shopfittings at that audience.

5. Choose a relevant theme, enlarge upon it and make it the very essence of your shop.

6. The window and instore displays must work together to entice the customer in and excite them into purchasing. This can be done with good display props and accessories.

7. Create a stunning window display to drag the shoppers in. Be creative, use lots of colour and have fun. When the shop is closed it continues to work for you so it needs to be powerful!

a. Another popular alternative is to open up the entire storefront so that the customer can see right through the store.

b. Large format graphics can also be used in place of traditional props and are a great way to convey a corporate ‘lifestyle’ if you have more than one store.

8. The shopfittings and display equipment should be smart, modern and relatively neutral to allow the products to shine. Although, if you want to use the fittings and fixtures to help convey the store’s overall outlook then you could choose to make more of a feature of them and select display props that enhance the stores look, choosing a rugged unfinished look for an outdoors store, or a fancy, extravagant design for a boutique etc.

9. Whatever you opt for, you must also make good use of lighting, sound and smells (and even tastes in some instances) to tempt your customers.

10. For the perfect retail mix, add to this a variety of instore events, special offers and customer loyalty benefits to ensure additional footfall and sales in quiet times.

sdea has a vast array of suppliers and manufacturers who between them can offer you literally thousands of innovative and exciting products and services. Many of them will even be able to put together a themed project, as well as designing, manufacturing and installing it for you – a complete turnkey operation!

We have a unique handbook full of creative and innovative ideas and inspiration for creating retail environments that work. The sdea Directory lists all our members with detailed descriptions of their products and services. The showcase gallery offers a visual interpretation of their many retail display items and the quick reference guides help you locate a supplier by the retail trade or the products in which they specialise.

This Directory is usually priced at £10, but the first 50 readers of this magazine to contact us will receive a free copy by quoting this feature.

Call us on 01883 348911, send an email to enquiries@sdea.co.uk, or visit our website, www.shopdisplay.org where you can link direct to our members’ sites and select products yourself.


tel: 01883 348911

email: enquiries@sdea.co.uk   


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