Make the Best Use of Space in Your Retail Store

Running a retail store involves many different elements, from keeping the finances organized to choosing the right products to stock. One of the most important things to consider is how you use your retail space to maximize its potential. Retail space often comes at a premium, so whatever you can afford, you need to use in the most cost-efficient way possible. You don't want any space to go to waste, and you don't want your customers to find it difficult to get around. You should think about a few important elements of planning your store design that will help you to make the best use of the space that you have available.

Choose the Best Floor Plan

Deciding what type of floor plan you want to use is one of the first things you will need to do. There are different ways that you can lay out your shelving and other display units, and they can each encourage customers to move around your store in different ways. For example, a free-flowing layout, which many larger clothing stores use, will allow people to move around however they like. They can easily jump between tables, racks and shelves without having to take a winding path through your store.

When you're planning how to use the space in your store, you should think about the path that you want customers to take. Many stores begin with an open space by the entrance, giving customers a chance to see the interior of the store and get in the mood for shopping. You might lead them around the store in a particular direction, which is often counterclockwise but can sometimes be clockwise if you want to do something different. Your task is to create your floor plan to encourage people to shop, make your products look good, and increase your revenue.

Leave Space for People to Move

One important thing to keep in mind is that you leave enough space for people to move. You don't want to force people to walk in a single file around your store, and you need to make sure your store is accessible. Is there enough space for a wheelchair or a stroller? Is it easy for someone with a seeing-eye dog or a cane to move around your store? You can consult with specialist accessibility consultants if you want to be sure you plan your space in such a way that it works for anyone who comes into your store.

Make It Easy to Move Things Around

There will always be a need to move things around in your store. Much of the time this will be when the store is closed, but sometimes it's necessary to restock or to tidy up while the store is open. Having enough space to move things is important, and you should also have the right equipment to move things too. A platform trolley is ideal in many situations, providing plenty of space to hold things and safely move them around. They can be moved out of the way when necessary, and neatly stored in a back room or elsewhere.

Use Vertical Space with Shelving

When you're trying to use any retail space, you should make sure you use all of the vertical space available. It helps to save floor space so that you can display your products more neatly and logically. Shelving helps you to create vertical displays, whether you attach shelves to walls or you have free-standing shelving units. Other options can be used to display products, depending on what type of product you're selling. For example, if you sell clothes, racks and rails can be used to hang items. Of course, you need to make sure you don't put anything up too high, or your customers won't be able to reach.

Keep Everything Tidy

Neatness is important if you want to be able to use your retail space in the best way possible. If you have an untidy store, it can look unappealing, waste space, and also might be a liability. You wouldn't want an employee or customer to trip over something or cause an avalanche of goods because they brushed past a shelf. To keep your store tidy, ensure your staff spend time straightening everything out and putting things back where they should be. It's also sensible to display your products in a neat way so that there is less risk of them getting knocked on the floor or moved around too much.

Have the Right Amount of Products on Display

It can be tricky to know how much of each product you should have on display. You don't want to have to constantly restock, but you don't want to put out too much stock either. When you put out lots of stock, it can help to increase sales. However, too much on your shelves can mean that customers are not as satisfied. They might think that your store looks cluttered and find it more difficult to find their way around the store. Unfortunately, fewer products on display can also make people buy less. It's important to get the right balance when designing your store.

Refresh Your Displays

You don't want your customers to get bored. If they see the same thing whenever they walk into your store, it might not be particularly appealing to them. Keeping your displays fresh will ensure your customers have something new to look at when they come in. This might mean bringing in new product ranges, but sometimes you might simply move things around. However, it's often important to keep certain sections for specific product categories so that people don't get confused.

Use Mirrors

The use of mirrors in your store can be a great way to make the space look larger. The mirrors reflect the space and the light, helping the store to appear bigger than it really is. You can use mirrors in different places around your store, and they're especially helpful for fashion brands. Place them strategically by displays of accessories, jackets or other items people might try on without going to a dressing room.

Create the Illusion of Space with Lighting

You might not be able to increase the amount of space that you have, but it is possible to make it look like you have more space. Using the right lighting, you can create the illusion of space, which will appeal to your customers. You can make your store look bright and airy by having plenty of lighting, especially combined with bright colors or plenty of white space. If you have any dark corners, it will make it seem like your store doesn't have as much space. However, it can also be important not to make things too bright. Harsh lighting might discourage people from spending too long in your store.

Don't Forget About Your Staff

Your employees can also help you make sure that you use your retail space in the smartest way possible. How you position them in your store and how they move around the store is another way you should consider how you use the space that you have available. When you have employees who move around, instead of staying behind the counter, it can make your store more inviting and engaging for customers. Employees moving around creates movement, which can bring people into your store.

You can use a variety of methods to make the best use of the space in your store. Help your customers to move freely through your store and encourage them to buy from you.

No comments