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Mitchell & Ness Shop Display

The importance of Retail shop design plays an important role in the bricks and mortar experience for consumers. Shop design services can ensure that a product is narrated with strong storytelling that ensures positioning and messages are conveyed.

Through the retail lens of creating brand purchasing advocates, retail shop design services can increase footfall and a growth in sales. A retail shop that is owned by a brand and is positioned as a Flagship Store can be an all encompassing experience, making sure that the journey starts from the moment a consumer steps through the doors. Due to the multiple levers available in retail shop design, unique positioning can be activated across a multitude of locations whether it’s a shop-in-shop or a pop-up shop setting.

Conveying a message to a consumer can sound basic but ensuring that consumer is engaged and understands the message is a detail that is key to a launch. The conscious need to take note of all the elements from colour, sound, smell, space or lighting can enhance the various aspects of shop design, and can make an impact in your marketing and sales success.

Every part of a consumer’s journey is important, understanding the ‘outside looking in’ to mapping the entire experience that the consumer immerses themselves in when walking through the retail store. A table focused on entry can showcase a collection that needs elevating, or a key communication that gives a brand message that is strategically positioned throughout the retail store can make a consumer purchase a product.

In the summer a retail store that is designed to have cool air and complimentary water to encourage shoppers inside, and then deliberately places clothing that works well in the heat near the front where consumers would see them first is good example of strategic thinking.

This is an analogy and no matter what retail business you own, there are Retail Design formulas to make sure brands deliver succesful retail shop designs. Ensuring a growth of sales, awareness of particular collections or product launches that can be delivered across a multitude of disciplines.

By looking at some positive and negatives across different retail shop design concepts, it shows how many opportunities there are to create a bespoke retail concepts, that truly encapsulates a brand and/or product position.   

examples of Shop Design footprints :

Bass Shoes Shop Talker and Glorfier

Shop In Shop

The shop-in-shop concept (or store within a store) is a retail design choice where a brand rents out a small section of a space to be completely owned by them. Ensuring a completely branded experience to consumers, where a brands postions and values can be captured. These retail shops are also sometimes refered to as retail concessions, a prime example of this would be the common occurrence of having a Starbucks coffee shop located inside of a grocery store.

Let’s have a look at the pros and cons of this type of retail shop design:


There are very few cons with this type of design, but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. The main issues you’ll have with shop-in-shop choices are:

  • Less space to sell your own products.
  • Bad employees/policies in the store you’re renting from could reflect poorly on you.
  • Having your location in a non-prime spot to capture walking traffic.


There are several pros to having a store within your store:

  • Customers are drawn in by the multiple brands and then shop with you as a result.
  • A new customer through visiting another concession that perhaps would not of seen your offering if they had not visited the other brand.
  • A one stop location where the consumers experience is enhanced through being able to shop in one location for a multiple of items. The store you choose can ideally sell products you don’t have, again enhancing the consumers experience.
  • By choosing the right store it can be a cost effective solution compared to full ownership of a store where you are funding everything, hence resulting in increased growth. 

POP-Up Shops

Pop-up shops are exactly what they sound like: they’re a form of retail store that a brand may open for days or weeks or even months before closing it down and reopening in another new location. Often themed, these limited-time, store concept designs can draw interest and create a sense of urgency since they will only be around for a few weeks/months.

So, what are the pros and cons of pop-up stores?


While very useful in generating interest, pop-up shops do have their own sets of cons, such as:

  • Generally, a brand must already be popular for a pop-up shop to successfully generate enough income to make the endeavor worth it. 
  • As you would expect, pop-up shops require up-front money that some smaller businesses might not be able to provide.

Naturally, if you are a store that can afford to set up a pop-up shop, then these cons are easily mitigated.


Pop-up shops, like shop-in-shops, have many pros:

  • They can generate up to 4x as much income per day as your regular business because of the urgency to the consumer that the store will close due to its limited vacancy.
  • A great marketing activation allowing a brand to trial a location and see footfall for the area.
  • PR’able these stores offer a rich storytelling that can be communicated.
  • Create a deeper connection between you and your customer.
Dune Shoes and Bags Shop Window Display

Shop Window Displays

Window displays are some of the most important marketing spaces you can utilise as a business. They are what your customer sees first, without something that attracts their eyes, your ideal prospect will never even walk into your store.

Unlike the previous two methods of retail shop design, window displays don’t necessarily have pros and cons. After all, they are nearly always beneficial to the business using them, as a walking by advertisement. There are some methods you can use to make sure your window display is fully optomised:

  • Ensure the space remains focused.
  • Theme the space so that everything in the display compliments and drives interest.
  • The smallest details make a difference.
  • Make sure to keep your windows clean and streak-free. Your displays won’t help if your customer can’t see them!

The above is just some basic guides on how to position window displays, but it should serve as a way to get you started on the right foot!

Mitchell & Ness Visual Merchandising

Retail Concessions & Brand Experiences

The biggest aspect of a shop design that will make the greatest difference is a full 360 brand experience. A Retail Shop design experience can communicate and showcase a brands offering in exactly the way it needs to be represented with storytelling that connects to the customer in an authentic way. 

Some key areas of increasing a Retail Shop Design brand experience:

  • Create opportunities for your employees to engage with customers and using them as key advocates.
  • Consumers experience in store can act as a catalyst for other purchases even resulting in a higher fee monetary spend.
  • A space to use for brand events and product activations.
  • Interacting and communicating with your core audience, a brand can get an understanding of what a loyal brand enthusiast want to see and experience. A store eviroment can be a great place to hold a focus group and action feedback.

If you’re interested in improving your retail shop design or having a conversation about how we can help you, contact us today for a consultation and see what we can do for you!