Designing retail stores to maximize visual experience
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The physical layout of a retail store is known to influence the stimuli and behavior of shoppers, eventually affecting their personal experience and store performance. This talk will focus on the visual stimuli of a shopper and address the following questions: (i) how to quantity visual experience of a shopper moving through a store?; (ii) how is this affected by the angles at which the racks are placed?; and (iii) which racks angles maximize visual experience? To this extent, we introduce a set of visual-spatial statistics comprised of visual measures (exposure and intensity) and spatial measures (space and aspect ratio). We present an approach to capture the dynamics of a traveling shopper’s field of vision against a static rack layout. We illustrate the use of our approach to analyze a real-store layout from a mass merchandiser in our region. We then introduce the retail rack layout problem, which determines the optimal single or multi-column rack angles in a constrained space in order to maximize exposure to the shopper. Results indicate that exposure can be increased by 18-226% over 90°-rack layouts with angled-racks (acute or obtuse from shoppers travel path) and that this exposure increase is sensitive to the shopper’s field of regard (angular limit and depth of vision). Finally, we will share our ongoing work on validating our models via a human subjects study in a 3D virtual store section. We believe our findings will provide quantitative evidence of the sensitivity of exposure to the characteristics of the shopper, confirming that there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all approach to retail design.
- R & P Seminar