3 unsung heroes of retail store operations

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Retailers often focus on visual merchandising and the effective display of products when budgeting for new fixtures and accessories, and with good reason. Having an array of display methods and different ancillary items is important to keep the inside of a store looking fresh and engaging for customers. However, there's another layer of support that's needed for retailers to be truly successful. The unglamorous items in stores like shopping baskets and carts, traffic control elements and dressing room supplies make the end-to-end shopping experience easier and more enjoyable for patrons. Here's a look at the benefits of including or updating these items in your store:

  • Shopping carts and baskets: The majority of stores can benefit from having shopping carts or baskets on hand. The wide range of different options means that smaller stores, as well as those where the average number of items purchased isn't very large, can still make it easier for customers to buy more than they can comfortably hold in their hands. Providing this simple option can easily lead to higher sales volume, as well as fewer instances of customers dropping and potentially breaking merchandise carried by hand. Plastic, metal and woven baskets are all available, and stores with a larger footprint can additionally use compact and full-size shopping carts for customer convenience.
  • Dressing room supplies: For clothing retailers, having an easily navigated dressing room is important to improving customer sentiment and encouraging repeat business. There are many different considerations to make, depending on the exact nature of your store and the items you carry. However, some of the most basic needs spread across all types of clothing and accessory merchants. Having basic dressing room accessories such as wall mirrors and garment hooks will significantly improve the customer experience. More specific items, such as shoe mirrors and try-on socks, are needed for shoe stores.
  • Traffic control: At some point, in some fashion, every store needs to steer customers to the right areas and away from the wrong ones. This requires a variety of different traffic control elements and fixtures, from ticketed "take a number" systems to barriers, posts, chains and ropes of various configurations to manage lines at checkouts. The addition of these items creates a more calm and orderly environment in a store, improving the mindset of both customers and employees.
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