The space in which the brand identity is experienced – this is the main idea of the concept store – a format, which dates back to the 90s of the last century.
Concept stores arose when the formula of boutiques – small stores with fashionable and exclusive clothes – turned out to be too narrow and insufficient. In concepts, as in traditional stores, we will not find departments with women’s, men’s or children’s clothing. The most famous concept store in the world – 10 Corso Como in Milan is a combination of modern art galleries, restaurants, bookstores, reading rooms and mini hotels.
A characteristic feature of concept stores is their multidisciplinary and multi-branding. Products of different brands are combined not so much because of belonging to specific species (women’s / men’s fashion, sportswear, cosmetics, etc.), but because of their nature. Clothes are not sorted by color, pants do not hang next to other pants and clothes from the same designer are often scattered around the different parts of the store. Concept stores are based largely on the authorial selection of the products. And so, in the clothing concept SHE/S A RIOT at Mysia street in Warsaw we can find perfumes, fashion and lifestyle magazines, books about design, as well as jewelry, paintings and lemonade served in stylish glass bottles.
The purpose of visiting a concept store is not quick satisfying the needs, e.g. buying shoes in a certain size, it’s more about experiencing. Fans of shopping without hurry, lovers of the idea of slow shopping should feel comfortable in such places.
Concept stores are traditionally associated with the clothing industry, but specialized grocery stores are increasingly transforming into concepts. The case might be the organic food shop Zielona Spizarnia in Poznan or the cheese shop Ser Lanselot in Lodz. In Warsaw, the flagship culinary concept is Koszyki – a mini market and bar in the space of a renovated hall at Koszykowa street. Offering organic food Koszyki organize parties with DJs on weekend evenings – such a situation would be difficult to imagine in the case of traditional delicatessen.
Retail industry experts, such as Rick Caruso (head of Caruso Affiliated – an American developer with such shopping malls as The Groove and Glendale in his portfolio) emphasize that sellers should focus today on creating a “magical and memorable” shopping experience that translates into customer loyalty. Many brands have already noticed that serving the customer with entertainment consistent with the spirit of the brand allows him to bind with the product for longer.
Providing unique experiences is a way to distract customers from computers in times of intensive development of e-commerce. Concept stores are certainly a place that can keep customers for longer, their uniqueness lies, among others, in the fact that to a greater extent than other store formats, they can build a community of customers who represent a particular lifestyle.
Photo: www.10corsocomo.com, instagram.com/10corsocomo/
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