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COVID-19


HOW COULD RETAIL DISPLAY CHANGE, POST-PANDEMIC?


F to


or years, the key buzzword within retail has been ‘experience’. But that was a world before Covid-19. In


this new reality, shopping has shifted away from having a feel good factor, as part of the experience, towards functional necessity, in a way that few could have ever predicted. While retailer focus is likely move beyond


communication designed to simply provide customer guidance around social distancing in the


coming


weeks and months, many are predicting that we can expect this situation to last well into autumn and perhaps winter. Put simply, retailers and brands need to be thinking ahead, and differently. Right now, success is less about doing the latest thing and more about investing in developing retail displays that are relevant in this ‘new normal’ – demonstrating


12 DIY WEEK JUNE 2020


Tracy Scutt, managing director of retail display specialist Arken P-O-P International examines how Covid-19 is likely to impact customer behaviour and approaches to point-of-purchase display


in-store


a clearer understanding of your customers’ mindset and the new realities of the instore environment. So what are some of the key considerations to be mindful of?


Customer anxiety


In normal times, shoppers entering a store are often worried about where to go and how to find the right product when they get there. Those fears


have become heightened,


immeasurably. Restrictions within stores are likely to frustrate people already experiencing anxiety since lockdown was enforced on 23 March. The secret to success for retailers and brands is in identifying ways


to remove unnecessary complexity – avoiding navigation and choice angst for customers during the shopping journey has never been so important. In many respects, the same rules for achieving best practice in retail display still hold true.


But their importance has been


taken to new heights. Avoid presenting customers with too much choice; aid quick navigation; and make both brand communication and benefits abundantly clear and easy to understand. Incorporating merchandising techniques such as ‘good, better, best’ can provide customers with a quick frame of


reference for comparing products in a range and help guide shoppers to make informed value, price and quality purchase decisions.


Purchase Path Customers will increasingly enter stores with a planned purchase in mind. More and more of us will become forensic shoppers in many of our purchase decisions – conducting detailed comparisons on a daily basis across a range of product categories, helping to create a physical or mental shortlist of possible products before we enter a store. The focus on product education and information will likely switch to pre-purchase research online as a result, with the role of retail display in-store instead centred on ‘recall and confirm’ in order to aid navigation to their pre-determined purchase choice. Right now, there is new under-utilised space potentially ‘hidden’ in plain sight. Integrating retail communication on top of


www.diyweek.net


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