Topic: Retail Sales

Does Your Retail Counter Need A Redo?

By Bob Phibbs

retail counter merchandising

Have you gone into a new retail store, a new hotel or retrofitted bank recently?

You'll notice the best have dramatically shrunk their counters. They've broken them up to let employees roam.

A typical retail counter is a wall, impenetrable. That doesn't set up a good welcoming feeling in customers. That says stay away.

I know of a bookstore that had an elevated counter with walls all around; a castle keeping customers apart from employees.

In those environments with the counter as a barrier, it can make customers feel like they are being judged; outsiders.

Could that be your store?

If so remember the very thing customers need to feel is warm and included.

When I checked into the Marriott Crystal Gateway in Washington, DC, I was surprised to see their front desk wall cut into small islands.

It was an important change because it let the front desk agents, when they weren't busy, come out from around the wall and be greeting guests in their hotel rather than waiting, bored for the next person to step up for service.

retail counter visual merchandising

It made the employees proactive and did away with the idea of employees speaking only when spoken to.

What to do

Look at your cash wrap counter and see if it is overbearing and how you could cut it down. 

The larger the barrier between you and the customer, the harder it is to build trust.

Cut down the wall in your business and you'll be able to interact more with your customers and allows you to sell more.

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