opinion

Remodeling, Revamping the Look of a Retail Store Setting

Megan Swartz

At the Deja Vu Love Boutique in Las Vegas, we have been working around the clock on a complete makeover. We decided it was time to freshen up and give our boutique a new look. Besides rotating the stock every few days, we overhaul the design and layout of the stores to keep our look fresh. As our store is open 24/7, we have to work around customers to accomplish this. While sometimes during remodeling week it might result in a slight drop in sales, it’s worth the return in the long run.

Our first order of business was a fresh coat of paint. It’s amazing how much some paint can do to completely reinvigorate a store! Our slat-wall was maple so we decided that the best color to help our product pop was black. We went with a nice bright pink for our walls in our lingerie area and a royal blue in our toy and movie area. Our accent walls are now silver with glitter. After researching the psychology of the use of color in retail, we chose a feminine color for areas where our target market is female. While blue is thought of as a more masculine color, it is considered attractive to both genders, and thus was a perfect fit for multi-gender areas. Half of your shoppers will not return to your store if they do not like the aesthetics; this is a factor considered in addition to colors that subconsciously drive sales. I will include a site I used when looking into this but there are many out there that, as a retailer, you might find useful: “The psychology of color at retail.”

It is absolutely remarkable at this location how much more excited the managers and associates are to come to work now that they were involved in the remodeling process!

Having your store painted might not be in your budget. We were quoted $6,000 for our 14,000-squarefoot boutique! That’s a lot of cash! Instead, we took a trip to Home Depot and purchased the paint and rollers ourselves. We were able to do all of our walls in less than a week for under $500. I would also like to add that including your associates on projects like this makes them feel like they are a part of something big. It makes them feel accomplished and proud. The best way to make big changes is to get everyone involved and excited. It is absolutely remarkable at this location how much more excited the managers and associates are to come to work now that they were involved in the remodeling process!

What goes great with fresh new paint? That’s right! Fresh new product. We had extra slat-walls in our back stock room, so we used that to extend our toy wall near our theater entrance. After expanding the wall 30 feet we obviously needed product to fill the space. We are utilizing this area for primarily men’s products. A majority of our theater and arcade guests use this entrance so we are hoping they will start picking up items on the way out (or in!). Now that some stock was rotated to this wall we had room to bring in several plan-o-grams. These give your walls such a nice look!

Moving on to our floor space, we ordered new shelving for our sexual enhancers from Store Supply Warehouse. Our lubes and such were on these very tall, odd shelves, making it difficult for customers to see what was on the top shelves. We now have everything at eye level, it is much more appealing and convenient for shoppers. Our lube sales have doubled since re-organizing this display! I’m sure there are times when vendors enter stores and are less than thrilled with their product placement, but I’m confident the new displays will be appreciated by guests and vendors alike.

Even on non-remodeling weeks, we like to move things around quite a bit. For the “Fifty Shades of Grey” movie release, we rotated our fetish section to our area near our main entrance. Now that the craze has simmered down we placed this section more toward the center of our store and put bachelorette and party favors in its place. With wedding season upon us we felt it made sense to not only have a softer feel upon entering, but also boost sales in this department. I’m assuming in most stores these sections offer a much smaller selection, but it’s no secret — people coming to Vegas are usually here celebrating something! For that reason, we cater to consumers that are here to experience the non-stop party!

Las Vegas is home to tens of thousands of adult entertainers. We have nearly doubled our High Heel and Dancewear selection to address that population. We are in the heart of Strip Club central, so why make them travel any further to get their costumes? With our new entertainer loyalty program, we are already experiencing a higher volume of sales in this department and plan on seeing sales increase each month thereafter.

In conclusion, while remodeling is a big undertaking (especially if you’re a DIY store!), it’s totally worth it. In the process, you’ll be able to re-center yourself around the vision of your store, as well as generate new ideas from within yourself and from your associates about how to merchandise and increase sales long after your remodel!

With more than 10 years working with Deja Vu’s various branches, Megan Swartz — Deja Vu’s general manager and buyer — has made a name for herself as a dedicated and savvy, merchandising and operations-managing dynamo.

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