Tuesday 31 May 2016
Research shows that ‘experience’ is for most visitors of shopping centers the prior reason to return. In a successful shopping centre there is always something going on. Half of the people asked replied that experience is the most important factor for their loyalty towards the mall. Not more than 9 percent mentioned accessibility, 21 percent navigation and another 21 percent mentioned comfort as most important. The conclusion? Experience is a decisive factor.
We summed up six major trends that contribute to experience:
1. The Third Place
The shopping center forms the layover between home and destination. A place where you can relax or go to meet people. Fitting the rhythm of the day. This can be created by combining different functions. More functions than shopping, but for example also eating, drinking and leisure. Sports can contribute, but also a cinema or theatre can create ‘the third place’.
2. Integration of the architecture
Use the unique features of the architecture to enhance experience. Examples are the works of famous architects such as Zaha Hadid and Liebeskind. It is important to show the unique features of the building in the most prominent way. But a shopping center also has to do with very special retail-dynamics which also has requirements. The most successful results are produced when everything comes together: function and design.
Being surprising and actual is key. There is always something going on in a successful shopping center. This may mean quite literally that there is a special place to host events. Events can be organized in cooperation with retailers. Think of trendy fashion shows or a nice pop-up market. Great events provide uproar, both online and physical. And shopping centers naturally want nothing more than that people are talking about them! There are many opportunities for the shopping center that knows how to behave as a brand, with its own marketing calendar and communication department. Events are an important tool in the toolbox of the marketing department.
4. Digital solutions
The possibilities of technology are endless. Thanks to touch screens, visitors can easily navigate through the mall and on large screens can real-time fashion shows be screened from all over the world. But digital solutions can also be used for the ultimate customer journey. Both at home and at the mall. Through the app, the customer can be inspired before, during and after the visit. This way the shopping center is always in touch with their visitor and communicates the brand identity with which visitors can identify their selves.
Unique food concepts contribute not only to spending time, but also to the experience. All over the world, food and drink is one of the main reasons to go to the mall; it becomes a meeting place. A good mall is a destination shopping center: a place where the customer is willing to travel for and stays longer. Gastronomy really fits this shopping trip. Besides restaurants the market hall or food halls gain major popularity.
Use vacancy and create new opportunities. Pop-up is an ideal way to keep the retail offer dynamic and varied. The beauty of pop up is that of something negative, namely vacancy, something positive is created: opportunities for a new kind of shopping. For example, there can be space for small independent businesses to display their products. One of the biggest irritations for shoppers are that all shopping streets and centers are looking alike, pop-up can put a stop to this.
JosDeVries The Retail Company BV
3605 MA Maarssen, P.O. Box 1194
NL-3600 BD Maarssen
tel. : +31(0)346 - 563764
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