Viewing all ideas posted in Retail
In ye olden days before the Web, retail was straightforward. If your company sold stuff, your stores stocked that stuff on shelves, trying to make as many items available as possible, getting the most out of the store’s square footage. If your company was more service oriented (like a bank), your store (or branch) mostly supported your customers’ transaction needs.
In these newer times, what’s surprising is how much retail still looks like that. For companies that sell goods, stuff-on-shelves makes less and less sense, as there’s no way a physical store can compete with the Web’…
How should a organization experiment with new ideas about customer experiences? What if they want to play with a totally new retail concept?
Starbucks asked a select group of employees create a completely new coffee house in Seattle called 15th Ave. Coffee & Tea. Peter Merholz explains that the concept store is Doomed to Fail as a inauthentic experience. He discusses why on CBC Radio’s Q program from Thursday—just jump to 1:40.
And for more backstory on the 15th Ave. concept, see Howard Schultz vs. Howard Schultz—the forth paragraph.
Over the last couple of years, we’ve written a few posts about Starbucks and retail experience design:Can the Starbucks experience scale?
Starbucks is not about the coffee
The Starbucks Saga - Catnip for Experience Designers
Well, the most recent chapter involves the launch of the “stealth Starbucks”, 15th Ave Coffee and Tea.
I just wrote a piece for the Harvard Business Online, Why the Starbucks “15th Ave” is Doomed to Fail, and it’s getting quite a lot of comments.
Until recently, I used to bank with Washington Mutual. One of the things that made WaMu unique was their “Occasio” retail style branch design. Those of you who may have seen Don Norman’s conversation with Peter at UXWeek 2008 might recall that WaMu came up with the design after extensive research, field work and ethnography. They spent considerable time and money studying how people do banking and even created some trial banks to help them study customers. The layout, which included a concierge desk, children’s area as well as “teller towers” was friendly, easy to engage with and emphasized…
Those of us interested in experience strategy and design are attracted to the retail industry like a moth to a flame. The successful retail experience requires a coordination of remarkable complexity. Online, you’ve got e-commerce, and it’s needs to address usability, desirability, and findability, and to overcome concerns about trust, security, and privacy. Offline, you’ve got the design of the in-store experience, including the interior architecture and wayfinding, interaction with staff, activities that the store supports, oh, right, and the products that are the reason you’re there. And, increasingly, there’s the hand-offs between the online…
The demise of independent book stores gets a fair amount of coverage in the literate press. In the Bay Area, we’re witnessing the passing of Cody’s Books, a formerly venerable Berkeley institution whose fortunes collapsed over the last couple of years.
The death knell for independent book stores has been tolling for at least 15 years, beginning with the rise of Barnes and Noble, and then Amazon. Oh, and supposedly, people don’t read.
I find much of the discussion misleading. While the cheaper prices that Amazon and Barnes and Noble are able to provide are one reason for…
It’s National Bike to Work Day, and the Adaptive Path offices are filled with bikes of all shapes and sizes, from fixies to cruisers to racers. Some of us have been riding for years, other are more recent converts. One person even bought her bike this week.
One of the worst things to confront new bike owners isn’t city traffic, it’s the dreaded trip to the bike shop. What a miserable experience. You’ve just purchased your new (or used) bike and something doesn’t work right. You’re not happy. You walk in to the local…
In our forthcoming book, Subject to Change, we close with a chapter titled “An Uncertain World,” about how the approaches we suggest will help businesses manage no matter what comes at them. In it, there’s this passage:
One key opportunity driven by this uncertainty is how the old categories will break down. David Weinberger discusses these trends and their implications in his excellent book, Everything Is Miscellaneous. Though the book is ostensibly about the nature of information in a digital world, the forces underlying that miscellany pervade all aspects of society. Google and Yahoo!, once technology companies, are…
The bulk of effort and discussion in the field of experience design revolves the design of systems to support people in what they want to do. We talk about touchpoints, and how to coordinate between the Web, the phone, and in-store. We talk about the importance of consistency in labeling. We talk a lot about the design of interactive systems, largely because those interactive systems are meant to serve in the stead of people (we just finished an in-store kiosk project whose primary purpose was to help people find merchandise in the store, because there simply aren’t enough staff…
The shopping experience at clothing stores is much better than it used to be. The layout of the store tends to provide more open space for shoppers than it did just five years ago. Even in department stores, gone are the days of being squeezed in between the sale rack and some soulless sweater display with a half dressed mannequin. It seems there are more boutiques focused on one style or catering to a well thought out target audience than ever before. There are places for people to sit, often with those nice little tables with magazines. I’ve noticed…