|A furniture store in Sanford, FL
curates a seating patio outside its store.
Nur Asri is an associate at Larisa Ortiz Associates
The public realm is extremely important in commercial districts. While plazas and parks offer areas for visitors to rest and enjoy a meal, sidewalks make up a larger percentage of the public realm and are often optimized by businesses to attract customers. As a result, many store owners have taken to displaying merchandise on sidewalks as ‘teasers’ to what else is in store for potential customers.
- Maintaining standards of cleanliness and hygiene
- Enhancing pedestrian comfort and safety
- Ensuring collective business viability
|More than 8′ width pedestrian zone outside
this fresh food market in Mt Vernon, NY.
Through our work in different downtowns and commercial corridors across the state and country, we’ve seen a number of best practices in outdoor merchandise display but we have also seen some that have done more harm than good to the overall business environment. Here are some quick tips to ensure you use outdoor merchandise displays to your business’ and your corridor’s benefit.
Clutter products in the allowable outdoor display areas. If displays appear cluttered and messy, customers are more likely to be confused by the products offered by the store and will quickly move on to neighboring businesses. After all, “less is more” is the common rule for merchandising. According to retail experts,high product density results in visual chaos that overwhelms the shopper. There isn’t enough time for the shopper to sort through the clutter and determine if the merchandise is of enough interest to stop and shop.