What advice do you have for store designers when they are asked to plan digital signage in a retail space?
The retail space is highly competitive and companies are constantly improving customer experiences in their locations. Adapting to the way current and future generations retain information regarding marketing is always a challenge. Digital signage helps bridge the gap between those who no longer use or want
New Store Design
New store designs help drive customer experience and keep consumers in the store longer. Digital signage has to be implemented in a strategic manner based on how your customer shops. The design should factor in how long people will be near the digital signage and how long they can see the messaging. This factor of the design can impact where the screens are located, how large they are, and the overall treatment of the content.
Remodel Store Design
Remodels are more challenging due to the limitations in the existing layout, networking, and infrastructure. It’s vital to partner with digital signage companies that understand your customer. Digital signage companies should be experts in the space and understand how the various needs impact ROI.
Endcaps – Retail always emphasizes endcaps due to foot traffic patterns and visibility. Endcaps are well designed and allow the appropriate-size display to utilize every inch of the space. Designing endcaps to allow for eye level mounted displays increases the visibility and time the customer has to interact with the content. Designing extra space for the customer to stand and not interfere with other customers is key. The longer a customer can interact with the display and learn more about the product, the quicker your displays will be generating lift.
Aisles – Aisles are challenging both from a visibility standpoint and for customer experience. A significant hurdle for most retailers is integrating power and data availability at the individual shelves. This is another reason why digital tags that run on batteries and WiFi are a viable and promising option.
Entrance – Understanding foot traffic and the way the customer interacts in their stores is the designer’s area of expertise. Where digital signage can be incorporated is utilizing that knowledge and placing large displays at eye level that reach the most number of customers in a short period of time. As always, content needs to be designed for the dwell time of that particular location. This is an example of how every single retail location for a brand may have their own digital signage content strategy.
Window Displays – Whether you’re in a mall or a stand-alone store window, displays always grab attention. Window displays are expensive due to the lumens (brightness) and temperature control needs. Designing a space that incorporates exactly the size and layout of the desired display cuts down significantly on cost, especially if it’s a standardized size and not full custom. Direct view LED helps bridge that gap but isn’t always your best choice from a cost and quality standpoint.
Networking can be challenging in a retail environment. POS systems and various electronics throughout the store utilize a vast majority of the bandwidth available. Having dedicated lines available for digital signage in the initial infrastructure will help resolve any potential issues that could arise later. Installing cabling can be easy, but the ultimate goal should always be to minimize customer impact during continued construction.
Similar to how budgets in new construction can help digital signage be more attainable also correlates to remodels. Stores need to budget strategically so that every dollar is accounted for in the capital planning and not requested later. Designers also need to work with their digital signage partners and buyers to monetize. Digital signage can easily be paid for by selling ad space to large consumer goods companies – P&G, Coke, Unilever. If a dedicated content management team is involved retailers can easily generate substantial revenue after the initial investment is covered while simultaneously increasing lift in multiple categories.