How to Know if You Should Expand or Downsize Your Retail Space

Shop Fitting Services / September 30, 2019

Shop fitters put plenty of hours into designing the perfect retail space with only goal in mind — to boost sales. There’s more to it than just creating an aesthetically pleasing retail store. You have to know how to maximise your available space and use it as a marketing tool to better showcase your products. If you’re going to spearhead the optimal retail experience in today’s world, you must be aware of who your clientele is and how you can attract them.

Beyond that, your retail space plays a crucial role in how successful your brick-and-mortar store will be.  Perhaps you may be considering expanding or downsizing your retail space in an effort to draw in more customers. How do you know which route to take? Today we’ll be discussing if you should expand or downsize your retail space to not only increase sales, but also enhance the overall shopping experience.

Take a look at your floor plan

Every retailer knows that a comfortable shopping experience is important when designing a retail space. But creating a floor plan that’s easy to navigate is not only your sole objective. There are other factors to consider like where the fixtures and fittings are located, how the lighting will be arranged, and more. Your retail space should stand out amidst a competitive retail market if you want to direct foot traffic to your store.

Consider analysing the behaviour of your customers. Observe how they browse your products to get a better understanding of how to arrange your aisles and pathways. A winning floor plan is about adding value to both your business and your customers. Here are popular examples of floor plans that you can look at:

  • Straight floor plan (functional and straightforward approach)
  • Diagonal floor plan (customer friendly)
  • Loop floor plan (suits most small stores well)
  • Angular floor plan (used mostly by high-end retailers)
  • Mixed floor plan (encourages customer flow on all four corners)
  • Geometric floor plan (great for accessories and apparel)

What about adding second floors? While most multi-level stores give off a sense of grandeur, single-level stores can still attract quality clientele by using the right floor plan. Consider which floor plan is suited for your business and factor that in when deciding to expand or downsize your retail store.

Distribute your products evenly

Your product placement is a good indicator of whether you should moderate or upscale your current retail space.Good product placement is about giving your products the best exposure without looking too overcrowded. This helps customers nail down exactly what they’re looking for in the least amount of time possible. The less confusing your store looks, the easier it’ll be for your customers to make a purchase decision. If you’re unsure of how this impacts your business, do a stocktake and find out how you can add or reduce your inventory without affecting market trends and purchase behaviour.

You can then whittle your stock down and add fixtures and fitting that will draw attention to your products. This can greatly improve the visual aspect of your retail store and help distribute your products more evenly. Accent lighting, display tables, and custom-built shelves are some examples of how you can highlight your products and elevate the browsing experience of your customers.

Consider your point-of-sale needs

Retailers often overlook their register placement when thinking about upscaling or downsizing their retail space. A dysfunctional store layout can make a simple checkout process feel quite complicated and this can negatively affect your sales. A larger, more modern counter is perfectly optimised for swift transactions and makes it easier for customers payments. If you’re looking to expand or downsize your retail space, consider your point-of-sale needs before reconstructing your existing store.

Reasons to expand your retail space

If you’re considering expanding your retail store, there are plenty of reasons to do so. Here are some valid points that warrant a retail space expansion:

  • Provides additional space to display more products.
  • Wider aisles that provide customers with a spacious shopping experience
  • Store profits are adequate enough to merit space expansion.

Reasons to downsize your retail space

Perhaps you want to follow the trend of downsizing your operations like most retailers do nowadays. Here are a few reasons why you should consider shrinking your current retail space:

  • Increase in rent exceeds that of the business budget
  • Plenty of unused space inside the store.
  • Reduction in amount of in-stock merchandise which is crucial to serve current customer base.
  • Wanting to reduce costs to maximise profits.
  • Customer base is composed of low-income individuals, thus resulting in low sales.

Before you make any big changes to your existing quarters, you have to utilise what’s available to you right now. It can be through a simple layout redesign or re-arrangement of your product placement. Many retailers first turn to this method before expanding or downsizing their retail space. Once the budget allows, they can make a confident decision based on how smoothly the operations are running inside the store.

If you’re unsure about which action to take, then you may benefit from hiring a shopfitter. Shopfitters have the knowledge and expertise on how to design the best layouts for your specific business. Whether you’re looking to expand your retail space or have it downsized, shopfitters can confidently advise you on what best suits your brick-and-mortar store.