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Closing the Circle with Technology Integration 5 Star Plus Series: Excellent Retail Design in China

Technology integration also helps to close the circle in the omnichannel ecosystem.

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(PRESS RELEASE)Retail stores are an important tool for marketing a retail brand to consumers. From the outside in, consumers need to be attracted to a retail store in order to effectively have an experience that will resonate and entice them to purchase more goods, and become more loyal to the brand as a whole. Incorporating technology into the design of retail store can enhance design elements, while also bringing customer experience to the next level as they explore the retail space. Technology integration also helps to close the circle in the omnichannel ecosystem.

Key Goals of Retail Design

Retail design starts with a concept that achieves key goals for the brand. While the specific goals vary for brands, there are four key design goals that should be keep in mind of retailers which include:

  • Technology integration
  • Brand Story
  • Attractive retail window displays
  • Retail experience

When combined into retail design, achievement enables retailers to successfully increase brand awareness and sales.

A Connected Retail Experience

Technology has become an integral part of daily life, and even more so in the retail landscape. It’s important for brands to utilize this daily dependence of their consumers as a way of building a deeper connection to their brand as a whole. Technology integration can be used in many ways from a stronger and dynamic display, interactive store elements, and eye-catching, movable design elements. Designers can play with technology integration as a way of attracting the eyes of consumers to key focal points that help to better market a brand and its story.

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Other points of technology integration are a bit more obvious, and can tie more strongly towards having a strong new retail design. This type of technology integration enhances the consumer’s overall retail experience, and can also allow them to learn more about a brand’s story in a more unique way.
A great example of this is the American footwear brand, Nike. This brand has a strong presence worldwide, from retail stores to integrated omni-channel experience, customers follow a complete brand journey regardless of market. Today we highlight one of their recent most innovative retail design concepts that focuses on new retail strategy. Nike ‘House of Innovation’ is their latest concept that has three locations around the world in New York City, Shanghai, and their most recent opening in Paris.

Nike ‘House of Innovation’ started in 2018 with the opening of their new flagship store in New York City with the launch of their House of Innovation 000 marking it as the first location in the world to follow their new retail model. The large flagship store features the latest products and customizable experience zones with a unique Nike ‘Speed Shop’ stocked with items that are in high demand for that particular location, which is based on their data sources.

Seamless connectivity with Nike’s mobile app allows customers to scan mannequins, view products and available sizes, try them at a reserved dressing room, and even purchase online for delivery later. Instant check out stations located throughout the store enable customers to make faster purchases as well.

Their second house of innovation opened last year in Shanghai. This three story flagship store features a pretty similar set up to their House of Innovation 000.

Adaptable displays allow them to adjust the design style depending on the promotion of goods. As of October 2020, Nike’s Shanghai store is focused on the promotion of their shoe line worn by famous basketball player Lebron James.

Many displays break down the physical make up of each material that goes into making the shoe perfect. Other displays create excitement by relating it back to Lebron. The central experience point incorporates technology into a hybrid experience by enabling customers to try on a pair of the shoes in their size and take the challenge on an LED enhanced basketball court. If the customer successfully completes the challenge, their stats are displayed periodically between promotional videos on a screen that can be seen from every level of the store.

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Other technologically enhanced points include dynamic lighting elements added to the mannequin platforms, shelving, mirrors, and store map itself. Other interactive features can be accessed by use of the Nike app while shopping in the store.

The year 2020 has put a strain on many industries, including the retail industry. This did not stop Nike from opening their House of innovation 002 in Paris this past July. Though the method behind shopping in-stores has changed, Nike’s retail strategy was unknowingly capable of undertaking such a change. Technology interaction points that allow customers to control how much physical interaction they have with clerks, and merchandise enables the customers to control their shopping environment while also complying with new safety measurements required post-pandemic.

Overall, Nike’s House of Innovation concept design is just one of many concepts they have rolled out in recent years to better meet the needs of their consumers in a new retail age.

Excellent Retail Design in Review

Throughout the series we have taken a look at four retailers with a presence in the global market to see how they successfully implement the 4 key goals of achieving an excellent retail design.

  • Adidas: Attractive window displays are an important factor of grabbing the attention of consumers and getting them through the door to experience, learn about the brand, and purchase products.
  • Hermes: Providing consumers with a tailored, memorable, and unique experience is an important part of creating a strong brand loyalty of consumers.
  • Timberland: Expressing the story of the brand enables consumers to better understanding of the quality of the brand and its products.
  • Nike: Integrating technology into retail design allows for the combination of all three elements and creates a shopping experience most desired by consumers.

Achievement of the key design goals creates success for brands in a highly competitive global market.

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