In terms of store design, most of the planning and creative energy goes into the in-store experience—and that makes perfect sense. But before the customer can be immersed in the in-store experience, he or she has to feel drawn to walk through the door.
Your storefront design will play a vital role in making that happen.
How to Design an Appealing Storefront
As YoungUpstarts explains, “The storefront is the first and last opportunity your business has to convert that passerby into a customer. If your storefronts are poorly designed, differ from one another or offer little in the way of a ‘preview,’ then that customer is given no reason to come inside.”
Visibility is obviously a critical component, but once you’re settled at a location, you don’t have much say about how visible your store is. You can, however, make the most of the traffic that passes your store.
Here are five specific steps you can take to grab some of that traffic.
1. Use Eye-Catching Signage
According to a recent FedEx Office Survey, storefront signage can be highly magnetic. The survey data showed that 76 percent of American consumers make first-time visits to a store based on signage.
Furthermore, 68 percent have purchased a product or service because the store has a compelling sign. So when it comes to your up-front signage, you want something that seizes attention while remaining consistent with your brand image.
Content, shape, colors, and size all come into play. The sign also needs to be relevant to your audience and their needs.
“Your product and/or services must either solve a problem for your target customer, or fulfill their needs,” ClearLED explains. “Your campaign will fail to attract your audience to purchase if the campaign does not relate to your customer’s needs. It is important for your storefront sign to connect with your target audience to communicate how your product is important and valuable to them!”
2. Freshen Up Your Building
Has it been a while since the façade of your building has been updated? Freshening up a few key design elements can change the overall look of your store. Here are some ideas:
- Try repainting your building. A fresh coat will make your storefront pop. (If it’s been repainted fairly recently, pressure washing can bring that clean look back to life.)
- Add an outdoor awning over a window storefront to create a more exciting and professional image. This works particularly well on façades that lack unique architectural elements.
- Washing store windows is a function that should be performed on a regular basis, but it often gets neglected. Washing your storefront windows will enhance the image of your operation.
3. Create a Sitting Area
If you have the space to do this, consider adding a sitting area outside your storefront. Not only does it look nice, but it helps you establish social proof.
When people pass and see customers sitting in front of your store, it enhances the appeal of your business and makes it more likely that they’ll stop, too.
4. Use Landscaping
Storefront landscaping can take your brand image to another level by freshening the area that leads into your store. Depending on the season, fresh flowers, greenery, fountains, statues, and paved walkways can work wonders. Check out these ideas for inspiration.
5. Change Out Window Displays
Window displays are critical—particularly for stores that are exposed to lots of foot traffic. Displays should be changed regularly though stay consistent with the overall brand image.
For the best results, keep your window displays simple yet compelling. Items should be at eye level and provoke enough curiosity or emotion to draw people in the door.
It’s all about engagement and inspiration. Don’t just use your windows to showcase products; ideally, they should also tell stories about your brand.
Revitalize Your Store’s Image
“First impressions last a lifetime—whether it is meeting a new friend or an interaction with a brand for the first time. The importance of storefront design can’t be underestimated when it comes to attracting new customers,” YoungUpstarts writes.
As you look for ways to increase foot traffic, enhance brand image, and expand revenues, consider updating your storefront. It’s a simple step that can yield powerful benefits for years to come.