Heart of Orléans BIA

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Explore The Heart of Orléans

Restaurants, Shops and Services in Orléans, Ottawa

Top tips for bricks and mortar business owners

When this pandemic is over, your customers are going to love in-store shopping. 

At the same time, with the e-commerce boom, retailers are thinking about ways to fully immerse clients in the world of their brand and captivate them by creating an inviting presence. 

To start getting ready for this, here are a few tips and examples to help business owners plan and prepare for this. 

Here are top 10 tips to offer a captivating window (pun intended) into the world of your brand through your storefront.

1. Find your voice 

Start with the big picture: If your business was a person, ask yourself, “how would the most loyal customers describe them?” Find the top three words and use these to guide your in-store design, offering customers a consistent, memorable experience. 

2. Design your story

When a customer comes to your store, what experience are you promising them? Safety or adventure? Sustenance or indulgence? Keep customers at the heart of your story, and use it to guide your design. 

3. Brand it

Your visual identity (logo, brand colors and fonts) helps customers recognize your brand. Align every object in your storefront with your brand — but don’t feel limited! Find complementary colors for your brand with tools like Canva’s Color wheel.

4. Details, details, details!

Start with the basics: color and texture. Think earthy tones and raw materials for health stores, or comforting, warm hues to backdrop enticing bakery samples.

5. Work within your (physical) limits

Proportions are what make things easy on the eyes. Measure your storefront dimensions and the objects you’ll include in it. Use this to guide what you put where: contrasting larger objects with smaller ones, draping fabric to steer your customer’s eyes, and avoiding clutter.

6. Draw it out

Save yourself hours of labour: draw your design first! Pick a few items as your stars, building the rest of your storefront to complement them. You’re free to experiment and get feedback before committing to a design.

7. Follow the seasons 

Match seasonal events that attract shoppers, but avoid those that don’t suit your brand. Use seasonal packaging and color palettes that complement your visual identity.

8. Objects “in action”

Help customers envision your products in their lives by showing them in a fully imagined space: colourful kitchenware on a table with fresh pastries, or a mannequin in a pretty dress “on a picnic”. 

9. Commission an artist

Since this comes with a fee, save this for exciting announcements (like restocking your fan favourites or a sale), or to stand out during busy shopping seasons where you’ll have the extra cash flow (like major holidays). 

10. Partner with complementary businesses

When done well, you’ll access new customers and bring extra value to the ones you already have. And so will they! Make sure you share an audience without competing. Add an element from your partner to your storefront. During busy shopping seasons, they’ll love making one less stop (if you sell your partner’s products in store) or saving money on must-haves (if you offer a discount instead). 

We’d love to hear any other top tips you have. If you have any you’d like to share, please email us with a photo and we’d be happy to share it on social media!