Do you know the “new” rules for your next store design?

Retail professionals are under extreme pressure to deliver what they always have, but now in a retail landscape that is being transformed by changing customer behaviour and a migration of retail sales to e-commerce.   There is a level of confusion and indecision that has entered many retail teams, that comes from the evolution of omnichannel. The pace of that indecision is increasing as the repercussions of wrong decisions become commercially more significant and more critical. Getting retail right with every new store opening, with every new collection, was difficult to do with the “goal-posts in the same place” Now…

Continue reading

Westfield London: New footprints in Experiential Retailing

The Morning Post:- 27th March Westfield London: New footprints in Experiential Retailing   Fresh back from viewing the advance guard at the extension to the Westfield London centre in White City. It is already impressive and will be spectacular, I have no doubt, when all the stores are open in a month or two. What you see in the first openings from retailers such as Lush, White Company, West Elm, Boots, Currys, and of course the showcase John Lewis, is a real and tangible response to the pressures put on stores through the migration of sales to online. In this omnichannel environment these…

Continue reading

Fnatic Bunkr: The Physical Experience of eSports

If you read my post regarding Sports Direct and Game proposing to share store space to introduce eSports arenas and you’re not familiar with Bunkr then read on. Bunkr was a pop-up eSports store and social space set up by Fnatic, one of the worlds biggest and most popular eSports teams. The concept appeared in Shoreditch in London and although planned as a pop-up of a few weeks lasted for over a year. It closed recently but promises to return soon in a different location bigger and better than ever. It serves as very good food for thought for everyone…

Continue reading

Selfridges: “Popping-up” Down the Corner Shop

On any visit into London its always worth a visit to Selfridges. It really has to be the most dynamic and imaginative retailer out-there always inventing, changing and challenging as it seeks to drive ever more customer through its shiny doors. It would be easy to be complacent, already having the most amazing assortment of brands, and seemingly every angle covered in the fight for footfall.     Last November saw the beginning of its unveiling of its new luxury accessories hall which when fully opened will apparently be the largest one in the world. No holding back there. However…

Continue reading

Retail Beginning or Retail End? 7 essentials for survival!

The Morning Post:- 23rd March Retail Beginning or Retail End? 7 essentials for retail success! Sometimes it makes sense to draw a line in the sand, even when the sands are changing at an unprecedented rate. This is certainly the case in retail. We are not surrounded completely by doom-and-gloom retail news, however there is undoubtedly a lot of it. This reached a focus this morning with the announcement from Next of its latest results. Whilst not perfect and admitting some errors in assortment and availability, Next is a highly respected retail business with great expertise in buying, a consistent fashion position and…

Continue reading

The New Era of Retail Collaborations: Sports Direct & Game!

The Evening Post:- 22nd March “The New Era of Retail Collaborations: Sports Direct & Game!”   Roaming through my rather cavernous Sports Direct in search of school sports supplies, I was considering the proposed collaboration between Sports Direct and Game. The idea is to share retail space and bring their brands together under one roof. It makes complete sense, serving different retail and leisure needs but to the same customer, whilst both offering something positive to the joint physical experience. The collaboration is also interesting in that it marries together two retail brands heading from very different origins but now to…

Continue reading

“Retail is Performance Theatre – Twas it not always so?”

The Morning Post:- 21st March “Retail is Performance Theatre – Twas it not always so?”   I thought it time to write something about the issue of theatre in retail. This has been stimulated by the news that John Lewis has had all its sales personnel at its new White City store personally trained by a drama academy. Once again hats off to John Lewis for this initiative, one of the oldest dogs teaching new tricks to everyone else. However, the fact is, theatre in retail is not new. In fact, literally, the original face of retail was theatre. We were a nation…

Continue reading

Missguided Opinion: Cracks in the E-commerce Golden Egg

The Evening Post:- 20th March “Missguided Opinion: Cracks in the E-commerce Golden Egg!”   Firstly, let me say I am a huge fan of Missguided. Whilst not the classic target customer I remember the palpable excitement of walking through their first store in Westfield Stratford, conceived in collaboration with Dalziel & Pow. It was such a refreshing store with so many ideas for the new era of physical shopping, not bogged down or held back by the mistakes and misconceptions of a retail history. The way it used the entrance to create amazing theatre and spectacle, the way it combined the latest…

Continue reading

“The Story of the Old Shop, the New Shop & the Other Shop!”

The Daily Post:- 20th March “The Story of the Old Shop, the New Shop & the Other Shop!”   Now the story I’m about to tell is a true story, and its a story about one of the UK’s biggest retailing businesses. They shall remain nameless as their identity is not the issue but to illustrate that improvements are always there even amongst the most seasoned operators. The retail business had in place a store refreshment programme and had allocated a dedicated team to work through its store portfolio applying a refreshment programme to each store. The process took 2 days per…

Continue reading

“What’s the Real Cost of Retail Store Disciplines?”

The Morning Post:- 17th March “What’s the real cost of retail store discipline” On a benchmarking tour of value retailers this week I found my initial curiosity and enthusiasm slowly but surely drained as I was repeatedly faced with dull store interiors, poor lighting, dirty shelves, torn graphics, display chaos and in some instances such a scarcity of staff that I could have used happily bedded down for a few hours without fear of being disturbed. The point is not about or indeed restricted to low price or discount retailers, but about the intrinsic value of basic store disciplines. What is the relative cost of implementing and enforcing store…

Continue reading