AmericanHort hosted a day at Columbus’ high-end outdoor mall, Easton Town Center, giving garden retailers insight to what its consumer and store design research, SHIFT, looks like in action.
Here are some of the standout ideas we saw:
A store with a cause attracts passionate employees and elevates its products. Lush, a store that specializes in soaps of all kinds, had a steady stream of consumers going in and buying expensive soap. It may sell a seemingly simple product, soap (although in many forms, from a bath bubbler — think Alka Seltzer for your tub — to shampoo in the form of a solid bar, or just old-fashioned hand soap), but customers saw it as much, much more.
The walls had hand-written messages about no animal testing, about everything sold having a “handmade touch,” and several other messages, despite the stores small footprint (maybe 600 square feet. Maybe.). The sales staff were alert and welcoming, and had bowls with pitchers of water near by in several spots in the store so they could demonstrate their products right away.
As they used a scrub on your hand, washing and rinsing you, they talked not only about the product, but also about how awesome they thought their store was for living by a credo they believed in.
Our take away? You can’t buy passion. But you can earn it.