I don't know about you, but I don't like to shop in crowded and cluttered stores. But apparently, sales go up when this is the case because people are more likely to buy on impulse. And this, then, increases our clutter! The following article explains this strategy being adopted by stores:
"Piling products onto shelves and stacking goods in the middle of aisles might not seem the best way to attract customers into your store.
But after spending years trying to cut down on clutter during the recession, some U.S. shops are making their stores look more confusing and messy to improve sales.
Stores such as Wal-Mart, Old Navy and Best Buy are looking at crowding shelf space, including ‘fast lanes’ with impulse items and adding more products down aisles.
Wal-Mart: The chain is among the stores that spent years cutting down stock, but is now making shelves look more confusing and cluttered to improve sales
Variety store chain Dollar General is raising the height of its standard shelves to more than 6ft and J.C. Penney is turning walls into jewellery and accessory displays.
Old Navy is lining lanes with food and drink and Best Buy is putting in larger products like bicycles to take up space created by thinner modern technology. Wal-Mart remodelled stores two years ago by reducing ‘end cap’ displays, shortening shelves and cutting down stock by nine per cent to avoid overwhelming shoppers.
But despite high customer satisfaction scores, shoppers were buying less products, so Wal-Mart remodelled its stores to put more stock on show.
Gone: The days of bulky electronic equipment at Best Buy are over, so it is putting in larger products like bicycles to take up space created by thinner technology
‘Historically, the more a store is packed, the more people think of it as value,’ shopping behaviour expert Paco Underhill told the New York Times.
‘Just as when you walk into a store and there are fewer things on the floor, you tend to think they’re expensive.’
Retailers are realising that as traffic shifts online, the best way to increase revenue in stores is by selling more products at their existing stores.
Electronics retailer Best Buy has been faced with ‘bowling alleys’ of space because their products have either shrunk or gone digital from CD to mp3.
Changing times: Retailers say that as traffic shifts online, the best way to increase revenue in stores is by selling more products at their existing stores
Clothes retailer Old Navy has added ‘fast lanes’ to around 100 stores to maximize sales per sq ft for shoppers to pick up drinks, toys and other impulse buys.
A spokesman for Dollar General said raising shelves from 62in to 78in has improved sales per sq ft from $165 in 2007 to more than $200 last year.
But Family Dollar stores have been taking items out of the middle of aisles, hanging them or stocking them on shelves instead, reported the New York Times
'Most of our customers, regardless of their walk of life, want a pleasant experience,’ said Mtu Pugh, format and space management vice president for the discount chain."
More on impulse buying: