Convert foot traffic into customers with an impressive store layout

supermarket-949913_640By Josh Astor

Your store layout has a huge influence on the way shoppers view your products and on what they buy when they come into your store. You want to take foot traffic that’s just wandering past and turn them into satisfied customers, and your layout can help you accomplish that. By applying these basic design principles, you’ll see a significant increase in the number of browsing customers who take note of your highest-margin items and choose them as impulse purchases.

The shine factor

Crows aren’t the only ones fascinated by shiny things, and Envirosell, Inc’s study confirmed it. When you create a store display that shines or sparkles, it will encourage customers to slow down and take a look at what you’re offering. Look for ways to add shine to your display: using an item that will be sure to catch the eye, using metallic shelves and borders, or creating a light effect that will be sure to catch your customers’ notice. This effect is proven. Some studies speculate that the attraction to shiny things may be part of humans’ survival instincts, guiding them as they sought out clean, drinkable water.

Order matters

A neat, tidy display can go a long way toward interesting your customers and convincing them that your store is offering high-quality items that they can count on. People naturally want to see their environments as neat, orderly, and structured. A cluttered, clumsy store will make them feel less comfortable, which means that people will grab the items they came after and nothing else—and if they just happened to stumble into your store, they may spend very little time there. Make your products easy to view and browse to increase customer satisfaction—and the odds that they’ll make impulse purchases.

Predictable patterns

Where you live can have a significant impact on how you shop. Americans tend to shop in a counterclockwise direction, while British, Australian, and Japanese shoppers prefer to travel in a clockwise direction. By ordering your store to allow this style of browsing, you make it easier for customers to move smoothly through your store, shopping as they go. It’s also important to lay your store out in a way that’s easy to understand. Keep related items close to one another to increase the odds that shoppers will be able to find what they’re looking for.

Speed bumps

Many shoppers will walk into your store with one item on their minds. Ideally, this item will be positioned in the back of the store to encourage customers to view as much of your other merchandise as possible. To get their attention, however, you have to create visual breaks that will encourage customers to take notice of the products you’re highlighting. This might be in the form of signs, special seasonal displays, or fixtures near the end of the aisle or in between aisles. Anything that breaks up the orderly arrangement of your store will help convince shoppers to slow down and see what you’re offering. These displays are designed to draw attention, so make sure you change them up regularly to increase customer engagement. The continued sense of novelty will make sure that customers stop and browse each time they walk past instead of becoming immune to the draw of your merchandise.

By using these strategies in your store layout, you can make a big difference in the way customers browse through and perceive your store. Is your layout working for you? If not, a few simple changes can go a long way toward increasing customer satisfaction and ensuring that they will be more likely to buy from you both now and in the future.


Josh Astor works for Marvolus manufacturing, a leader in the store display industry for over 60 years. Marvolus prides itself in being a true manufacturing company and importer that partners with select suppliers on custom projects to deliver innovation that helps you become more profitable. Please visit their website to learn more

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