All fashion entrepreneurs share the same goal when it cames to setting up their retail space : of course they want to create an environment where customers will feel good, buying at the same time. Note that you never get a second chance to make a first impression as the saying says, and that’s why decors, colors, lightenings and all these things are important details to make a difference and create a powerful image. Why your store image seems so important ?
Why your store image seems so important ?
There are many things at stake in the shopping experience and as an entrepreneur, you must have the flair for it all ! When you walk past a store in the street, the look of it will decide if you get in or not, right ? At first, it is really a visual feeling : does it look clean, well organized, eccentric or just boring and messy ? To Donna Geary, the founder of Impact Visual Merchandising, it takes seven seconds for a passing customer to figure out an opinion about a store.
Nowadays, it is necessary but not enough for a store to look good, or for a display to look attractive. It’s the minimum you can do. Every choice you make has to fit the image you choose to create, and it all must remain consistent. The visual merchandising around this image will be the layout of the store, the presentation of the products, the signing, the display, and the events.
“By making your store look great, you want to get a proper return on investment and have your business go profitably.”
Why start with store image ?
The store image is very linked to your business concept, because you want to embody your values, a message through your image. How do you want the costumer to feel in front of the overall look of your store ? That’s what you’ve got to start with and determine first. Your image should make you stand out from the competition and be remembered. This is the true and solid foundation of your business, that will remain despite any change or newness around season after season. The image of your store must capture people’s attention and create a positive impression towards it.
What makes an image ?
According to Donna Geary, there are different elements that make your image :
– an identifiable store name : it sets the tone and gives your identification associated to an image in people’s minds. You must chose a name that is easy to say and remember on the long-term, and that shows your values.
– a powerful visual trademark : this is the combination of words, pictures, colors, shapes, textures and styles to make your store stand out. You want it to be unique to you.
– an unmistakable storefront : it should provide instant recognition and project a clear image of what you offer in.
– an inviting entrance : try to put yourself in the customers’s shoes, where will they come from, will they see you, will they find the entrance easily etc.
– a consistent and compelling store look and hook : the overall visual of the shop has ot be a call to action to make the passing people get in your store. It can be a special presentation, a promotional offering, posters, banners, sounds. Anything as long as you make it unique and consistent with the rest !