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Retail Analytics

The trendiest retail stores of 2016

Written by Tony Loxton
Nov 29

2016 is almost over, and while you get to grips with every year seems to fly by in the blink of an eye, we’ve rounded up the trendiest, most innovative retail stores that have been reinventing the traditional brick-and-mortar retail store for your reading pleasure. Interaction is the name of the game, as immersive, entertaining and educational shopping experiences dominate the trendiest retail stores around the globe.

Penguin Random House’s Branded Concept Store is every bibliophile’s dream come true

Global publisher Penguin Random House is known for its stable of world-renowned authors and imprints of some of the most beloved books in history. Much like YouTube’s move into the retail store space, which we wrote about a while ago, the publisher recently opened a branded concept store in Toronto in an effort to track consumer interaction. “With Penguin Random House being the firm behind the binding and manufacturing of books, the company rarely sees sales or consumer interactions directly”, reports TrendHunter. A brick and mortar store that sells branded merchandise including totes, journals and books is now being used as a way to directly measure consumer engagement.

Dyson’s demo store takes shoppers into the engineering lab

International technology brand Dyson, the manufacturers of vacuum cleaners, heaters, fans, and hair dryers opened up a ‘Dyson’s demo space’ on London’s Oxford Street to showcase the inner workings of the technology behind their day-to-day appliances. Shopping for household appliances is probably one of the dullest, albeit unavoidable tasks of adult life; Dyson, however, has turned this yawn-inducing chore into an interactive – and dare we say fun – experience.

Dyson gave shoppers an inside glimpse into the engineering and technology behind the appliances, as well as the chance to try them out before handing over cash. The launch of Dyson’s interactive store coincides with that of their Supersonic hair dryer – the functionality of which is demonstrated in an in-store hair salon where visitors can have their hair styled and experience its functionality first-hand, with a new hairdo to boot.

The world’s largest Lego store is one big playground

The maker of the world’s favourite building blocks, Lego continues to fuel the imaginations of children and adults alike with their newly opened two-storey retail store in Shanghai’s Disney Resort. Lego’s answer to immersive, interactive experiences that go beyond the traditional brick and mortar store measures more than 10,700 square feet and features “life-size displays made out of LEGO bricks...cleverly assembled to create familiar Disney, Marvel and Pixar characters”, says TrendHunter. A combination of colourful displays, various play and create areas and the X factor –  nostalgia – make for a powerfully persuasive shopping experience.

Grocery retailer Carrefour introduces “shoppers sat nav”

Grocery retailer Carrefour recently unveiled a world first in retail at their newly renovated hypermarket in Lille, France. According to New Atlas, “LED-based technology acts like a sat nav for shoppers, providing in-store directions to shopping list items via their phones.” This in-store positioning system, designed by Phillips, uses LED fixtures dotted around the store, totalling a mammoth 2.5km.

As well as streamlining the shopping experience, this system has reduced the store’s electricity consumption by a staggering 50%. Dubbed ‘Visible Light Communication technology’, each light transmits a unique code that’s read by the camera of a shopper’s smartphone, and then ‘deciphered’ by the grocery giant’s mobile app. “Using the app, it is possible for shoppers to find out exactly where they're located in the huge store, navigate the 7,800 sq m (84,000 sq ft) shop-floor to find items they need and also be directed to promotions and products that are on offer,” New Atlas reports.

The story behind beauty products comes to life at Body Shop’s Canadian pop-up store

Just in time for the festive season, the first ever pop-up store from the Body Shop is now open in Toronto’s upmarket Yorkville neighbourhood. The beauty brand that’s synonymous with ethically-sourced ingredients and eco-friendly manufacturing is “using the space to test new installations and activations, as well as promote gifts for the holidays,” reports Marketing Mag.

The flagship pop-up is being used by the retailer as a way to try out new installations and the effect of storytelling as a marketing means. As well as being educated as to the origins of the various ingredients in each product, shoppers are able to personalise packaging as well as the beauty products themselves.

Regardless of what type of retail store you own, measuring and analysing the way people interact with your brand is crucial. Find out about Blix Traffic, our foot traffic software and retail analytics solution.

Learn more about Blix Traffic for retail

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