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3 Tips for Designing your Retail Stores with Chinese Feng Shui



Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese art that was developed over 3000 years ago. Feng Shui principles focus on the positive flow of energy to create harmonious surroundings and affect people subconsciously. In the retail industry, a good Feng Shui design does not only improve the atmosphere in your retail store, but will also effectively increase sales. The following points explain how to optimize the flow of “qi”, the energy, to draw customers into the retail store and stimulate sales.


Step Outside


Feng Shui design starts outside of the retail store. Take a closer look at your main entrance, shop window, neighbors and the environment around your store. A good Feng Shui retail store has a strong presence, an inviting shop window and a well-lit entrance. Ask yourself if you would like to enter to the store. If yes, where does your attention go to? Another way is to take pictures from different perspectives of your store entrance. Compare them and carefully check if you can find any signs of bad Feng Shui. For example, the front door should not be aligned with the back door; mirrors should not directly face the front entrance and the lightning should not be fluorescent. In case your front and back door are in alignment, try to arrange your displays in such a way that they hide the direct line from door to door. This is a very important step to avoid energy loss.



Jimmy Choo's store in Xi'An is a great example of a good Feng Shui entrance. The front and back doors are not aligned, the shop window is inviting and the lightning is right on point. In addition, the store design uses curved glass walls framing the entrance doors which smoothens the flow of energy into the space.

Centralize Attention


One fascinating thing about Feng Shui is that you can influence your customers' focus and areas that are paid attention to by creating a path with the flow of energy. It is important that one big centralized element is visible right when entering the store. This avoids the feeling of being overwhelmed or distracted. Additionally, create some smaller sub-centers in your store that invite customers to explore. Design them individually so that the client experiences a journey of discovery. However, keep in mind that less is more. Make sure that there is still room to breathe. Useful tools for creating a path can be colors and lightning but also the triggering of all five senses.

The Louboutin store in Toronto perfectly realized the idea of creating a center and several individually designed sub-centers.


Make the Money Flow


Besides designing an inviting environment in your retail store, good Feng Shui can also increase your sales significantly. We already discussed the importance of the entrance. It is believed to be the “mouth of qi”. In other words, it is where the energy enters your retail store. Therefore, the cash register should be close to the entrance. Another way to stimulate your sales is to use “lucky corners”. The corners that are diagonal to the front door are perfect for displaying unique products, special offers or your most-profitable goods. Well-lit and decorated with some plants, they will spread energy and catch the attention of customers.


Chevignon at Lafayette Paris uses the lucky corner by putting their most expensive products in the corner that is positioned diagonal to the entrance.


In conclusion, Feng Shui is all about guiding the energy flow. It is an ancient science and has been further developed over thousands of years. Although many Feng Shui principles are complex, we have summarized the main points into some easy-to-follow tips for you. Optimize the entrance of your retail store, bundle the attention, create paths and make use of the lucky corners. Having good Feng Shui is an ongoing process. Over time you will find out how to create the best path of energy through your store. And you will experience that if the “qi” flows, the money flows as well.



MasterClass: ‘Re-Sparkling’ Retail: Using Store Design to Build Trust, Faith and Brand Loyalty

HOW CAN WE EMPOWER and inspire senior leaders to see design as an investment for future retail growth? This session, led by retail design expert Ian Johnston from Quinine Design, explores how physical stores remain unmatched in the ability to build trust, faith, and loyalty with your customers, ultimately driving shareholder value.

Presented by:
Ian Johnston
Founder and Creative Director, Quinine Design

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