Have you ever noticed how much the environment you’re in affects your mood or your decisions?
A powerful example of this is in shopping. I recently had a gift voucher for a high street store, but when I thought about going to spend it I didn’t feel excited at the prospect of going to this particular store, so I considered the other branches nearby, and none of them appealed either. Then I realised that all the branches suffered from the same problems:
- Poor and dingy lighting
- Unappealing ‘sale’ shelves directly on entering the store
- Jumbled and untidy goods on the shelves
- Too many promotional and offer signs everywhere
- Piles of goods waiting to be loaded on to the shelves lying around
- Dull and dirty flooring
- Crates of rubbish and packaging left in the aisles
Whenever I go to any branch of this store, I can guarantee I’ll find a number of the above. This weekend I met a friend in a city I don’t normally go to, and sure enough the same issues were there.
The sad thing is that the products they sell are actually great. They just don’t do them justice when it comes to presentation and delivery. When you buy something in a cheap and tatty environment, you associate that item with that cheap and tatty environment and it never feels ‘good’.
In sharp contrast, the rest of the high street seemed to be blossoming, with a lot of beautifully presented, appealing shops with unusual and eye-catching displays attracting passing customers. Restaurants and cafes seem to be upping their game too, with a new wave of stylish but informal, family friendly options offering changing menus through the day.
Throughout this economic depression, I’ve felt that the best businesses will survive – the ones that really deliver what people want, and continue to focus on the customer will pull through, and I fear that my gift voucher will soon be worthless if this chain doesn’t pull its socks up!