14 March 2020
The Future Of Shopping: How Retail Stores Are Set To Change
Consumer habits are changing, and retailers are feeling the brunt of this alteration. With more shoppers opting for the online experience provided by the likes of Amazon, bricks-and-mortar stores are having to react to this change in demand if they want to survive.
A lot of things are changing in traditional retail, from the products stocked to the in-store experience, and one of the most obvious physical changes is the design of the shops themselves.
In this blog post specialist commercial contractors, Eden London, discusses how the future of shopping is set to change the look and design of the retail store, and how this is impacting construction firms.
The need for change
With online retail vastly outpacing their bricks-and-mortar counterparts in recent years, the need for change in highstreet retail is clear.
The digital transformation is changing the habits of consumers. 94% of UK adults now own a mobile device, and 43% of us pick our phones up within the first few minutes of waking up.
Our reliance on technology is something which influences our habits, including our preferred shopping experience. With the demand of customers changing, retailers must react. For traditional traders fighting to stay afloat in a market dominated by online competitors that offer ultimate convenience, this means a complete overhaul.
Meeting consumer demand
Being customer-centric is the key for retail stores wanting to retain their customers against the easy option of shopping online.
For highstreet shops looking for ways to stand out, increase footfall and maximise transaction value, it’s vital that every necessary step is being taken to meet the demand of the modern consumer.
Retail stores need to put themselves in the shoppers’ shoes, and consider why they are choosing to shop online and how this can be actioned in the in-store environment.
When customers shop online, they get:
- Speed – In a couple of minutes a consumer can find what they want and make a purchase without needing to leave the house.
- Availability – Unlike bricks-and-mortar stores, online shopping offers maximum availability of products, which are shipped to customers directly from the warehouse.
- Variety – Shopping online gives consumers the means to buy items from multiple suppliers sites.
- Ease – Consumers can make purchases without needing to visit their local town or city.
- Save – Online shopping allows customers to find the best priced products available on a global scale—not just what’s available on the local highstreet.
But how can high street retailers compete? Simply, brands need to react to the change in consumer demands and provide equal—if not better—shopping experiences to that available online.
The transformation of brick-and-mortar stores is already underway, with maximising convenience spearheading the change.
Some examples include:
Faster payments – many consumers want to pay for their items without the traditional queues.
Retail stores have since introduced mobile payments and self-scan options to meet this demand, with Amazon recently debuting its first supermarket with no checkouts.
In-store experiences – With shoppers able to easily purchase products online, highstreets need to offer something more.
Experience is the one thing a physical store has that ecommerce can’t match. Retailers are harnessing this, with in-store only brands like Primark now offering salon treatments to customers.
Store design – It’s now harder than ever to attract customers to bricks-and-mortar stores. As such, the visual appeal of stores—from their layout to their visual merchandising—is at the forefront.
A recent article by fashion retail specialists, Drapers, has stressed the importance of attending to the appearance and design of stores in the battle against online competitors.
Merging online and offline shopping – We’ve all heard the saying ‘if you can’t beat them, join them. And that’s exactly what shopping centres group, Intu, is doing.
Bringing online retail brands tangible, the firm has recently announced the opening of its first bricks-and-mortar store dedicated to online brands.
The impact on commercial contractors
But how is the change in retail stores affecting commercial contractors? With the change in shopping habits forcing retailers to consider the appearance of their stores more than ever, the effect on the commercial construction industry is a positive one.
With many retail spaces installing new features, redecorating and in some cases, issuing completely new fit outs, specialist retail construction companies are in high demand.
With every brand looking for ways to stand out and attract attention, commercial contractors must be more creative in their plans for retail clients, providing new and exciting ideas that can help boost customers. Professional construction firms must ensure that these new designs are implemented at the highest standard, on time and on budget to result in maximum success.
Contact Eden London
If your retail store requires updating or a complete commercial fit out, contact Eden London today. With years of experience providing construction and fit out services for retailers in London and the surrounding areas, our professional team has the skill and expertise to bring your vision to life.