During the height of lockdown online clearly stole the lead. Shoppers reverted to home shopping and click and collect not only as bricks and motor closed, but it was the safest option with contactless purchase and delivery.
The high street has had years of decline with the British Retail Consortium (BRC) publishing ShopperTrak data that states UK shop footfall fell by almost 50% year on year in the third week since non-essential stores reopened in England.
Missing the mark
As stores scrambled to implement strict guidelines, Covid signage took over the usual visual merchandising guidelines that seek to enhance brands and encourage customers in to store.
Customers were instead met with harsh dos and don’ts and often confusing directional signage that disrupted the flow of their shopping and not in a good way. Many of us left without items, a marked change from going in for milk and coming out with a basket full!
As businesses return to the new normal, it is vital they are putting the customer at the heart of all they do
A study of 2500 shoppers conducted by Roland DG states that 80% of shoppers say they feel safer in stores with clear signage. The study has found a whopping 54% of 16-34 years olds have already stopped visiting stores with poor signage according to the study.
Clearly this is a disaster for retailers and the need to regain customer trust and confidence is never more critical. Retails doing well are embracing the new normal. By bringing Covid messaging in-line with brand and moving away from harsh negative signage, they are creating an experience for their customers of positive reinforcement for following instructions. This wraps the shopper in an emotional safety blanket, making them feel cared about.
We remember those that are with us through the hard times and winning the hearts and minds of shoppers during this pandemic will be the difference between successes or failure
Graphic Arts Group are print specialists with over 40 years’ experience implementing signage solutions that communicate clear messages within brand guidelines