Say “No” to clutter and “Yes” to a positive customer experience with intentional C-store design

Featured Images: Hutch’s – Altus, OK

JUST SAY NO …Thank you

Remember this ad campaign in the ‘80s and ‘90s? Well, let’s bring it back and apply it to the C-Store industry. What are we saying “no” to? Let me explain. At Paragon, when we work with clients, we drive the idea of “customer experience” and “customer journey.” Personally, it pains me to walk into a convenience store that has gondolas and racks everywhere without any sort of strategy. I have to mentally prepare myself for the obstacle course I’m about to take on just so I can get a cold beverage from the cooler.

On this journey, I will have to execute perfect steps, be nimble as possible, and often implement the hands above my head side shuffle method to navigate through multiple gondolas and merchandise racks. Typically I fail, because I bump into the seasonal cardboard display that I simply did not see in my peripheral.

This doesn’t have to be the experience, and quite frankly, it shouldn’t be. Countless store operators continue to accept free racks, coolers, and other displays from their vendors. Enough is enough. It’s YOUR store and it’s YOUR brand you’re trying to sell – not theirs. Don’t get me wrong, vendor relationships are critical, but when it comes to them providing a free display rack or cooler, just say no thanks. Instead, utilize your vendors to assist you in being different by creating different touchpoints and incorporating some intentionality to your store.

Your store layout needs to be executed with strategy and purpose with one goal: customer experience. A store that has good site lines, space for customers to comfortably navigate throughout, and is reflective of YOUR brand is what creates an experience. Don’t be afraid to get creative, add custom fixtures and create a brand message that metal gondolas simply won’t do. If it doesn’t fit with your brand strategy, Just Say No… Thank you!

Austin Burns

Business Development

Paragon Solutions · 817.927.7171