How to Design Your Exterior to Attract Customers
Your customers do judge a book by its cover, especially when it comes to deciding where they will shop for products that promote their wellness and health. As humans, we are naturally led by our senses. It’s how we process info and how we make that split second decision between yes and no. It’s also important to think about our memory in relation to our senses. Remember that ultra tacky store down the street that looks like they sell low quality products and isn’t really somewhere you’d get excited about going in? You remember that place for all the negatives. It’s natural to do so especially when your first impression is less than stellar.
So what does your exterior currently say about your brand? What first impressions are you putting out there?
It’s all about the exterior. Making a statement from the curb is an essential part of your design and carries your customer’s expectations of what they will find when they step inside to shop.
Let’s hit the high points of designing great exteriors and show you some awesome examples of what we love to see- what keeps us coming back and telling our friends and family.
You know you need the attention grabbing signs to catch the attention of your shopper, BUT there are rules! If your signage is clear, legible, vibrant, well- maintained, and reflective of your brand then you are already doing a great job of getting the interest of your customers and directing their business inside. Another thought is to not block a cute view into the shop with signage. Obviously this depends on your laws and regulations, but we love being able to see what’s going on inside. Even if it is a partial view.
The exterior signage should be a taste of what their customer experience will be like- an appetizer of your brand.
I love this little graphic from bigrentz.com that shows you fast tips for effective signage.
A Clean Start
40% of shoppers will not shop in a store that doesn’t look like where they usually shop. We’re creatures of habit. This really ties into branding your exterior with something familiar to your ideal client. Example: If you’re regulars tend to be soccer moms or yogi’s, then your exterior should look something like a Lululemon or a relaxing spa. If your clientele is more med modern, then lean Apple store. Chances are, your design will lend itself to the look of your client naturally. Not sure what your design aesthetic is? Take our Style Quiz.
No matter who your client is, you need to make sure you’re putting in the effort and time into keeping it clean. 52% of clients will avoid a store if the exterior looks dirty. (I’m surprised that number isn’t higher. Yuck!) Start with a professional, deep power wash and a fresh coat of paint. (Your exterior is due every 7-10 years for a paint job.) It’s an investment you can’t afford to skip.
What does your welcome mat look like? Maybe less-than welcoming? They get trashed easily and should be changed out (depending on climate) every year. There are local commercial mat cleaning services that can extend the life of your mats with zero effort on your part. They change them out fast so you don’t have to think about it or touch anything.
Create an instagram worthy front window display. Remember this is a first peek into your brand and will be either a “Hell yeah or a big OH HELL NO”. Spend the time, hire a merchandiser, do it right and it will pay off threefold. Cruise around on pinterest & instagram for some inspiration. Remember that 70% of first sales are based on curb appeal, so add the personal touches like beautiful lighting and planters with lush greenery.
Fast & easy ways to make your exterior instagram worthy?
- Hire a landscaper who will weekly maintain and seasonally come out and change the planters for you so they are always looking pristine and welcoming. They can also recommend or care for your street side trees. You’re selling a medicinal plant so it’s a good idea to always look like you know what you’re doing with the fauna.
- Window washer crew. This folds into the “keep it clean” I talked about above, but don’t neglect your glass. Leave it to a pro on a regular cleaning schedule.
If you take the time to enhance the exterior of our store, you will have better odds of attracting foot traffic and bringing in your ideal client. A clean, well designed and appealing storefront gives your customer a positive impression and energy about your brand. Even baby step changes to your storefront can make your retail store stand out and draw great customers, and sales.