HMV and Virgin are wise to be jazzing up their stores

The fact that HMV has introduced a new store concept to encourage customers back into its shops comes as no surprise (DW 11 October). We have been championing the idea that an appealing in-store experience will help entice customers into stores for a good while now.

Dwindling sales for high street music retailers was clearly the incentive needed to update the tired supermarket-style layouts. Stores such as HMV and Virgin Megastores lacked personality and failed to espouse the entertainment values of their products.

The introduction of HMV’s new in-store design and the fact that Virgin Megastores is following suit with a rebrand and new store design of its own proves what we have been saying for years – that improving every part of the total customer experience is the only real way to increase footfall and the bottom line.

If HMV, or any other stores that are finding that their on-line counterpart is eating into their sales, look at improving the whole store experience, then we can surely expect to see more people switching off their PCs and venturing back into shops again.

Bob Bayman, I-am Associates, by e-mail

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