Great products generate a good reputation. And a good reputation is often earned by maintaining good reviews, consistent sales (incl. profit) and excellent customer service, over a long period of time. While digital shopping is making every transaction easy and quick, there’s nothing more exciting than actually walking into a physical store, browsing the latest products, touching and feeling the product you want and giving it a test run by trying it on before you buy it. That’s why it’s so important to have a nice window; especially if you are retail leasing and are unable to change too much in the space. There is also so much competition online, that you actually need to have a great brick and mortar store to compete. Hence, the value of having a retail store is now more relevant than ever before.
But how do we make these retail stores appealing? Remember that you need to attract all sorts of people, even those with the shortest attention spans in the world, and those who prefer the comfort and ease of online shopping. So how can we get these people to come and check it out? Before you even start your window, you have to make sure you have the right venue. Retail property agents will help you find the best place for you. But, if you already have space – read on!
Here’s how to create a stunning design for a retail store window:
- Get familiar with your target audience.
Demographic sales data may help you figure this out. If a great number of sales are generated from a certain gender, then you want to know why. It can also help you inform the design process or ordering process for products, and let you know whether a play of colour or décor could interest that target segment. If you aim for your brand to remain unisex, focus more on figuring out what your brand stands up for – what your values are. Whether your theme is to honour a national day, to represent an icon, or to match the latest season, consider the types of people by age and trending preferences. How would they benefit from your products? These are some of the questions that may lead you to a final strategy.
- Allocate the resources properly.
There is magic in each retail window décor. Whether it’s through storytelling, a set of products that speak for themselves or the unique concept it emulates – figuring out a design for your retail store could be draining. That said, it’s okay if your creative juices get used up sometimes, but there’s no need for your wallet to get dried up too, in the process. It can actually be really cheap to create a great looking window. It could be both cheaper (and more Instagrammable) if you use recycled materials since sustainability is the name of the game in the industry these days.
Beware, though, that there are many retail-store windows that get less than 1 second by bypassers – and those that look only do so because they are facing the store from their car window. Adding text to your window conveys clear messages of what you offer so don’t hesitate to do so. Just make sure it is neatly written.
- Showcase your products at eye level.
Perspective is subjective. And while you want to share your vision with your customers, consider their perspective, from the outside, when decorating your retail store window. Sophie Darling, community manager of WeddingDresse.com and formerly owned a bridal shop, advised on the following questions to ask yourself, as a guide for decorating a retail window: What would you like them to see? Where did you want them to look at first? How can you lure them in going inside to try on your products? This is an opportunity to flaunt your prime products efficiently. But don’t forget to lock it on an eye level. Otherwise, it would not have as much impact as expected. Many retail stores do this by showing off their most popular pieces in the middle of the window. Book shops practice this same tactic by elevating the best sellers.
- Tell a story but avoid clichés.
Use your window by featuring stories rather than the usual display of products. This will make people pay more attention to your store as they pass by. It stirs curiosity and encourages them to check out what’s inside the store. Skip using cliche designs such as mannequins that stand as a family, or a car window that doesn’t have a rotating platform (for the car to be shown as a whole), and of course, the usual stacking of the clothes and shoes outside the store because it’s on sale. It’s just so tacky. It makes your store look cheap and trashy from the outside perspective. Refer to the importance of the third step.
- Avoid making a mess out of your display.
There are some displays that really make your products stand out. But if you show everything nice and new in the window display, it won’t be as effective, since it may be perceived as full of clutter. And this reduces the value of your brand and merchandise.
It would be helpful if you choose three hues that go together. Leave as much space as you can because space stands for luxury. Don’t put too many things or decorative accessories with your featured ones to keep the impact on your key products intact and solid. Prevent pedestrians from thinking about your window as unworthy of a glance because it feels too crowded.
Creativity is something innate in man, as it denotes communication. Creating something is like breathing in the imagination because there are times when words aren’t enough to express your idea.
A final thought: don’t forget that a retail window is like a billboard, so create something cool and use it to communicate your most important message.