Post-covid retail: innovation and decorative solutions for stores
Now, however, we think about it a little more before going to a shopping center or, directly, we decide to buy online because it makes us feel more secure.
These changes in the way of acting and consumer decision-making, together with the need to implement new measures so that establishments are safe and healthy environments, show us a post-covid retail era in which we must bet on innovation and incorporate new decorative solutions for shops.
With the reduction of coronavirus infections, local businesses and establishments reopened their doors. However, the welcome in the retail sector has been preceded by a series of internal actions. Companies have had to adapt their establishments to the new security protocols. All this with the aim of guaranteeing that the stores are a totally safe and healthy environment not only for customers, but also for employees. After all, if a worker tests positive for coronavirus, the establishment has to close to maintain a quarantine of at least 15 days.
The new normal in stores involves incorporating measures of social distancing and hygiene to act with complete peace of mind and without risks. In this sense, most of the establishments have been f
The challenge facing designers of interior spaces, shop windows and visual merchandising is not trivial. What a priori appear to be circumstantial changes in reality implies a redesign of stores and commercial spaces in the long term. The new measures of social distancing and hygiene will accompany us for a long time, as long as the virus lives with us and there is a vaccine. And, in addition, in the future we will have defeated the virus but the mentality, priorities and habits of society will have changed and, therefore, also its way of consumption.
Thinking about the present and the way we socialize and go shopping, for the consumer safety and hygiene in the establishment is now much more important. It must also be taken into account that the number of customers in the store has decreased. Therefore, we are faced with a panorama in which the quality of the service offered to the client outweighs the number of clients itself.
Going out shopping or having dinner with friends is a type of leisure that we will allow ourselves on many fewer occasions than we were used to. Therefore, retail has to be prepared to offer maximum quality and safety on those visits to the establishment.
On the other hand, taking advantage of the visits of consumers in the physical establishment, it is important, in addition to generating trust and security, generating the desire to return to the store in the future and connect with the customer. In this sense, we highlight the initiative of the VANS brand in its flagship store on Oxford Street, where it has carried out a temporary redesign of the establishment to connect with its customers through VANS Family, its loyalty program. The objective of this action is to achieve something apparently contradictory: that the brand is closer than ever to its audience, maintaining social distance and creating a physical experience that cannot be lived online.
© Copyright. ISInstore. Vans London flagship
Challenges of post-covid retail to achieve a safe and healthy environment in stores
One of the main challenges for stores and establishments in the post-covid retail era is the possibility of detecting the virus in furniture and other types of surfaces. In this sense, many stores work with biosensors with the capacity to detect the virus and the development of some kind of standard methodology is also being studied to certify that the equipment and furniture of the stores is free of coronavirus.
Another related aspect is the survival time of the virus on furniture. In this sense, all attention is focused on discovering the factors related to the time that the coronavirus can survive on surfaces and, subsequently, the analysis of new coatings and their effectiveness.
In addition to these first two challenges, there is a third that is also of vital importance: the elimination of the virus from the surfaces and furniture of establishments. In this sense, it is important that stores bet on furniture that has two main characteristics:
- Ability to resist any type of coronavirus disinfection treatment.
- Antiviral capacity.
Furniture in general should also be:
- Easy to clean.
- Easy to move and not very heavy so that they can be distributed in different areas of the store.
- Adaptable and flexible, to be able to give it a different use depending on how the health crisis evolves.
Redesign of the spaces
The pandemic has changed the way we live, work and, of course, the way we see things.
We live in a new normal to which we are still adjusting. In the case of the retail sector, this process of adaptation to the new normal implies the need to redesign the functionality of the different spaces in the store and in general its design to make it more multidisciplinary and flexible.
Next, from CAAD we are going to point out some aspects that we consider that stores should take into account when redesigning their spaces so that they coexist with a new lifestyle and are a guarantee of safety and health.
Organization of spaces
One of the most basic measures to fight the coronavirus is to maintain a social distance between people of at least one and a half or two meters. To do this, most establishments are forced to reorganize their spaces to ensure that people can keep the separation meter. In many cases, space is limited and it is not possible to give up part of the decoration or furniture, so many stores opt for Delivery.
It is also advisable to reduce the density of products in the store and that, for example, the displays show less amount of garments. A solution would be to show only one model or size of each garment, although storehouses can also be enlarged to become delivery points for products purchased online.
Fashion stores are probably one of the most affected by the coronavirus. With the State of Alarm, not only did they close, leaving products from last season, they also accumulated stock and they need to reinvent their scenario to guarantee the safety and health of people who are going to buy clothes, without losing the possibility of offering an ideal purchase.
Fashion stores, in addition to making changes in furniture, are also relying on technology, show windows and visual merchandising to capture the attention of a customer who is much more reluctant to make purchases in physical stores. In a closer future than we think, augmented reality or the installation of smart fitting rooms are going to be more present in stores.
Essential post-covid retail solutions in stores
In addition to the use of technology and the redesign and organization of spaces, there are certain products that are already essential in stores:
- Screens: It is a basic way for stores to protect employees and customers from the coronavirus. These protection screens are especially essential in those businesses where social distancing is complicated due to the small size of the establishment.
- Place hydroalcoholic gel stations at the entrance to the store and in different areas of the store.
- Use of doormats to absorb dirt and germs that accumulate on the soles of shoes.
- Promote sunlight as much as possible and also natural ventilation.
Innovative, flexible and adaptable brands
If there is any conclusion that we can draw from this health crisis and the new normal is that brands, now more than ever, must be:
It will depend on these three characteristics that they know how to adapt to the new consumer needs that post-covid retail must face if it wants to survive without losing the trust of its customers.