5 Tips for Setting Up Your First Retail Space

Retail store

Setting up your first retail space is an exciting and exhilarating time. There seems to be an endless list of items on your to-do list, but you know that at the end, there’s a substantial reward; a commerce place to call your own.

There are several important decisions that need to be made. When a customer walks into your store, they’ll look around and make multiple first impression decisions within seconds. This doesn’t mean you have to pour a substantial amount of money into making things perfect. It does, however, mean you need to put a substantial amount of thought into all the pre-grand opening choices. Even with a small budget, you can fulfill your store’s potential with careful planning and consideration.

Incorporate Nature

Adding green to your retail space can quite literally breathe life into it. Not only is this a great decor option to consider, but studies have shown that incorporating nature into a retail environment can actually increase value perception. The reason? Biophilia. Biophilia is a human’s innate attraction towards nature. This concept has been studied and recognized for several decades. As a result, biophilic design has been used in retail spaces to showcase commitment to green living and nature. Simply put, biophilic design elements provide healthy returns. According to one study, retail customers believe that businesses that incorporate nature believe the prices are worthy of being up to 25% higher.

Think About Music

You may not realize it, but most retail locations are playing music in their spaces. Although barely recognizable, there’s a reason for this. Music enhances the retail experience—if you walk into a completely silent store, you might find yourself feeling a bit uncomfortable. One study found that, on average, 4 out of 5 retailers believe that if they stopped playing music in their stores, it would negatively impact them.

There are several reasons you should curate a playlist. One of the biggest reasons is that it allows you to show off your brand’s aesthetic. Are you laid-back and care-free? Upbeat and fun? Mellow and calming? Putting together the right playlist helps create the mood that you want your brand to convey.

Pay Attention to the Layout

Every decision you make for your retail location should be a strategic one. Your layout is critical. A well-planned floor plan helps ensure the flow of traffic is manageable, and that you can highlight your most important features. You want all your products to get maximum exposure; hiding them behind decor can make them get lost in the shuffle. And whether you realize it or not, there’s a bit of psychology behind the floorplans at major retail stores, and you can learn plenty from them. Take a careful walk through your nearest Target department store, for example, and pay attention to how items are displayed.

Paint An Accent Wall

A store’s layout isn’t the only area that’s backed by psychology. Multiple studies have confirmed the various roles that color affects our minds and thought processes. Our brains have become hot-wired to respond to different colors in different ways, as colors evoke emotions and signals.

“Color psychology perhaps explains why people are allegedly more relaxed in a green room and why weightlifters perform better in blue gyms,” says Retail Customer Experience. “It’s certainly the reason why some paint manufacturers now have color cards setting out the therapeutic aspects of each color, and why some cosmetic companies have introduced ‘color therapy’ ranges.”

One way to hone in on this is by creating an accent wall that’s painted a specific color. This colored accent wall will naturally draw eyes towards it. It can also make a space feel bigger than it actually is. And it doesn’t have to be paint: have fun with different patterns, textures, and wallpapers.

Don’t Forget About the Small Details

In retail, the small details make a huge difference. It’s easy to become a bit wrapped up in the fun stuff: incorporating funky colors, making playlists, and picking the perfect plants for a nature wall. But there are other maintenance tasks that matter, too.

“One area you really don’t want to skimp out on in retail is plumbing,” says Fix It Right Plumbing in Frankston. “While it’s not a glamourous as some other areas of retail development, it’s necessary. A bad plumbing issue can be prevented through early maintenance; if something goes wrong during operating hours, it could force you to temporarily shut down, hurting your revenue and bottom line.

With that in mind, you should also double check that the wiring and electrical systems are all up to par and up to code.

About Mohit Tater

Mohit is the co-founder and editor of Entrepreneurship Life, a place where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business owners can find wide ranging information, advice, resources, and tools for starting, running, and growing their businesses.

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