International Retail Store Design Principles - The Principle of Totality

Modern day Retail Stores have come a long way from the traditional mom and pop shops as well as Departmental Stores. The modern Store Designs have taken the concept of shopping to a new level. The modern Store Designs are all embracing keeping in view the functional, utilitarian as well as aesthetic values and requirements of Customers as well as all others who are associated with the Stores and are stake holders.

Today’s Store Design is visually exciting as well as inviting not only to the Customer but to the entire family as well. The layout and Designs have been kept in mind with a view to provide total shopping experience for the entire family. Shopping is no longer a half hour exercise. The concept of visiting the Store over the weekend calls for spending an entire day shopping, eating and relaxing with the family.

Modern day Store Designs have been guided by the Design Principles that take into account the need for an integrated approach keeping in view the strategic and commercial value of the Store Design as proposed by Doyle and Broadbridge. In this section, we shall examine the Principle of Totality as applied to Store Designs.

According to the guiding principle of Totality, the Store Design should aim to create an environment that is aesthetically pleasing and functionally superior as well as operationally efficient as well as strategically and commercially an effective model. The principle determines that the Store Design should encompass all the elements that make up the design and as such no element should be viewed in isolation but in relation to the overall design aspect.

Going by the above consideration, it is essential to take into account the views of all the stakeholders who are associated with the Stores. In this case the stake holders are many including but not limited to Customers, Management, Marketing as well as Operational Management, Staff as well as Security and Finance etc. The Store Design would have to be developed taking into account the needs and viewpoints of all these related people. Additionally there are many more elements like the Geographic Location, Proximity to Access, Socio Political climate around the location and more importantly the Energy efficiency, Health & Security that go into the design of the Stores. Costing too is a very important and determining factor, so also the possibility of expansion in the future. The list of critical parameters that need to be taken into consideration doesn’t end here. The external factors comprising of Suppliers, Competition, Weather and more importantly the nature of products being stored and sold too has a bearing on the design aspect.

A successful design will take into account all of the above parameters at the time of design and more importantly create simulation and sample designs to be critically examined by the important stakeholders. By incorporating the feedback especially from operational teams, marketing and other important groups, the effectiveness of the Design can be enhanced. When the Design meets with functional effectiveness, the Store can be said to be a successful model.


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