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Planting the Seeds to Generational Retail Success

Hicks Nurseries looked to improve its customer experience through insights and design




Generationally speaking-

Founded in 1853, Hicks Nurseries has a rich heritage of serving gardening enthusiasts on Long Island and surrounding areas for six generations.

Their mission is to be your favorite destination for quality home, garden and outdoor living inspiration and solutions. Today, they are dedicated to helping gardeners, homeowners, and professionals achieve their goals with expert advice, service, and an outstanding selection of unique products.

With an eye on the future, Hicks Nurseries looked to improve their customer experience through insights and design, to make Hicks even more engaging and relevant for current and new shoppers, and to maintain operational efficiency.

The Chute Gerdeman team collaborated with Envirosell so that guest’s behaviors and feedback can influence each step of the enhanced customer journey.



The Greenhouse area is 15,000 sq.ft. and greets guests with a view of abundance and beauty of the gifting focal. The entrance is designed to be a wow moment for guests with natural light beaming on the engaging table displays and luscious plant varieties.

To support Hicks Nurseries high traffic at peak seasons and cart congestion, we increased aisle widths and intuitive wayfinding signage to allow guests to easily find their way around the space.

Also included in this spatial re-think was developing a plan that unified all the buildings and maximized display space while highlighting key areas along the customer journey. Special attention was paid to the interactive moments with guest and staff engagement; these include the cash wrap, gifting station, and garden care concierge. This new layout also accounted for operational efficiency, allowing Hicks staff to support the store and guests effectively.


Merchandising systems were upgraded throughout the store, bringing the best of aesthetics and functionality together. Custom designed display tables and fixtures were implemented to bring customers inspiring and informational product displays while being mindful of the operational necessities of a high-volume nursery. Necessities like daily watering and plant care, seasonal shifts in plant types and capacity, as well as the flexibility to support rapid restocking of Hicks merchandise.



170 years and six generations later, the Hicks brand has become engrained in the Westbury and Long Island community. Guest feedback was critical in the store planning that led to larger aisles, better sightlines, and key areas designed to make the guest feel connected to Hicks Nurseries brand. Whether it’s the rotation of seasonal vegetables, holiday, or the annual Flower & Garden Show, Hicks Nurseries commitment to offering a community experience full of quality product, service and expertise was emphasized throughout the space.


The new sophisticated signage system highlights iconography and easy to read type with flexible components to meet Hicks’ flexibility throughout the season. The signage helps aid guest navigation, information on each plant, all infused with warmth and hospitality. Other highlights include a living wall installation at checkout highlighting the Hicks commitment to the beauty of plants and a photo wall where guests can snap a photo for social media or record a family memory.

We have a loyal customer base that has shopped here for generations

“Grandparents, parents, and now their kids, it’s a beautiful thing. They’ve grown up with our business and seen the investments we’ve made to keep Hicks Nurseries a better shopping experience. When this all began, Customer navigation was a primary focus.

This renovation transformed our space and made it much easier to navigate for our staff and shoppers. We’ve received great responses from our customers – they love the new experience and it puts the Hicks brand in a new light.” – Eleni Roselli, Director of Marketing



Hicks is home to 72,000 sq.ft. of retail experience, but research revealed that guests couldn’t see into other rooms, preventing ventures into additional areas of the nursery. This suggested opportunities to create a clearer path through the facility including flipping the entry and exist to be more intuitive and improve direct sightlines deeper into the space. By removing walls and opening sightlines throughout the space, guests can now see more beautiful areas to explore. This also infused more natural light into areas to create an inviting feeling throughout the space, encouraging shopper exploration.

To express the brands core values fully, enhancements were made to service moments with a new Customer Service counter, enhanced Cash Wrap experience and Garden Care Stations within each area.


These new designs support Hicks’ continued desire to be the go-to resource for next generation gardening enthusiasts with new brand elements, an enhanced shopping experience, maximized spaces and engaging displays, all supported with new lighting and flooring.

The impact has been an inspiring and positive guest experience; delivering on deepening the customer experience with Hicks Nurseries and the expert service offer to build brand loyalty and further enhance differentiation of the Hicks Nurseries brand.

Photography: Courtesy of Chute Gerdeman



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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