Retail is increasingly becoming more about lifestyle experiences rather than about transactional purchases. Brands and retailers are now redeveloping their store designs to create consumer hubs for products and in doing so, creating immersive retail experiences.
We take a look at some of the latest trends and ways retailers can adapt and modify their store design to create hybrid retail models.
Luxury super-service flagships
Luxury retailers have long been pioneers of premium service, which capitalises on the ‘cash-rich, time-poor’ consumer. Premium brand Dolce & Gabbana opened a barber shop service on London’s Bond Street. Another example is luxury watch brand Bremont, who opened a flagship store in Mayfair that incorporated a bar into the retail space to create the sense of luxury.
Many brands and retailers are using their knowledge and expertise to create complimentary in-store services. South West based sports retailer Tony Pryce Sports teamed up with Reebok to offer Fit Hubs within the stores, bringing them additional opportunities to attract new customers and increase sales with promotional offers during the event. For The Body Shop Pop Up event, Green Room included a beauty parlour in the centre of the shop for customers to try out the products and have their make-up done as part of the whole experience.
Socialise the retail experience
Retailers can go beyond providing Wi-Fi in store, they can offer services that allow customers to connect, congregate and socialise in-store. Urban Outfitters wanted to create a sense of community when it opened its store in Malibu, so they created a sociable outdoor seating space with hammocks and tents.
More applicable to luxury retailers, but retail spaces can be transformed into retail destinations by adding galleries and art installations. Luxury retailer Louis Vuitton launched their flagship store in Venice in 2013 and created substantial exhibition space, which has frequently held art installations.
In our previous blogs, we have explored commuter commerce and the changing workplace, and with the increased demand for temporary workspaces, some retailers are offering nomadic workers mobile office space. For example, in China, Starbucks are creating larger stores to allow for more work hubs and space for meetings.
Retailers and brands should adapt their store designs to flex to consumer needs for both work and play to maintain their relevance on the high street. Retailers should think about the services they could offer in store as the role of the store diversifies.