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My trip to the mall yesterday to buy a suit yesterday reminded me why I only go shopping semi-annually, and inspired this idea. 5 improvements to department stores. Feel free to add more.
1) Incandescent or "Daylight" LED bulbs. No fluorescent lights. 100% less depressing.
2) Store split down
the middle into mens and womens; no walking through the little girls' panty section to get to mens' shoes.
3) Central checkout area near the main entrance to the store.
4) Compass' rose located at least every 10 meters so you know which direction you are going.
5) Locate "impulse" items according to store section. For instance, tool accessories will be located in mens' and the perfumes and jewelry will be dispersed through womens'.
[normzone, Feb 11 2013]
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||Shirley, the relevant question is not why people put
up with such awful stores, but rather why does the
existing layout yield the highest profits for the
store, which I would wager it does. A huge amount
of analysis goes into deciding what goes where.
||The other relevant question is what were you doing
buying a suit? And what was your tailor doing in a
||You don't wear little girls' panties, [DIYMatt]?
||For some reason I imagined you did.
||Agree with #2, but also: there should be a completely separate copy of the women's section for men who are buying gifts for women (e.g. it's populated only by men and has all male clerks)
||//section for men who are buying gifts for women
(e.g. it's populated only by men and has all male
clerks)// Why? Because male clerks are so good
at picking out the perfect gifts for women?
||"Oh yes, sir, I'm quite sure she'll love it. It has
carbon fibre straps, and a titanium quick-release
It also has a universal remote control built into
the left cup, and the right one carries this
foldaway socket set and adjustable wrench. We
find it sells very well."
||One reason why the location of impulse buy items seems so
chaotic is that the store is intentionally walking you past
items that you wouldn't normally glance at. If you want to
get to the home improvement department without being
assaulted by products you aren't interested in, navigate
there via the housewares, jewelry, and lingerie
departments. The endcaps and islands you encounter along
the way will make perfect sense to you.
||This is the same reason that the grocery store occasionally
moves everything around. I know it seems as though they
malisciously did it just to aggravate people, but it's
actually so that you'll see different products than you
usually do and possibly expand your purchasing profile. The
frequency at which stores shift the merchandise around
(it's called 'frontage rotation') is
calculated by an arcane formula incorporating such factors
as shopper volume, inventory flow, lunar phase, and
chance of rhinoceros. I learned all of this and more as a
shift manager at a 7-11, many ages ago.
||Ah. That explains the rhinoceros display then.
||//If the shopping-for-a- female department were staffed
by middle-aged men who've been married at least 10
years, it would be immensely successful//
||Let me introduce you to the male shop assistants in
Australian department stores, none of whom have ever
married their "significant other" because the proposed
changes to the Marriage Act, which would allow them to
marry, are not likely to get through the legislature
||//little girls' panty section to get to mens' shoes.
||<desmond morris>//no walking through the little girls' panty section to get to mens' shoes// - this is entirely deliberate on the part of the store's designers. Mens' products in department stores are always located in places which are just slightly harder or more frustrating to find than is absolutely necessary. This stirs, deep within the subconscious of every man, his primitive 'hunter' instincts. By the time he reaches his prey (the suit, some shoes, etc.) the lengthy search for this object has already filled him with the thrill of the 'chase' and he is ready for the 'kill' and is thus primed to buy the shoes, or suit or whatever. In this mindset, the action of 'killing' or purchasing is more important than the utility of the item purchased. Contrarilywise, if the thing he was looking for was located at the store entrance, was well sign-posted and was easy to find, the man would not have his 'hunter' insticts satisfied - he would just dither around for a bit, think "Maybe I should think about getting that in a different colour" and wander off. </desmond morris>
||- also, as suggested in the idea, more use of compass roses would be great. I personally would like compass roses in the pavement at the exit to every tube station in London.
||hippo, that is a great idea. Get Boris on it.