Friday, May 18, 2012
The Best New Urban Retail Book
BOB GIBBS worked for the most profitable mall developer in the country, where he learned the many simple but effective principles that national retailers like the Gap and Apple use to beat the pants of local retailers. For example, he can tell you exactly how many cents per square foot a store's income will rise if they change thier store lighting from flourescent to a particular warm incandescent bulb the national retailers have identified. There are similar rules for exterior signs, window arrangement, store arrangement and the like - all tied quite precisely to how the affect sales per square foot. These figures are all known, because all the cash registers in malls are linked to the mall's computers, since the mall owenr gets a percentage of sales.
Buy it, you'll like it. And you'll learn a lot, about successful and unsuccessful retail, why Mom & Pop's usually don't compete very well with the chains, about retail rules in general and about how those rules relate to architectural design in general.
Hint: Follow the KISS Rule most of the time. KISS = Keep It Simple Stupid.
Example: Regarding all the fancy and expensive streetscapes that are in vogue now, Bob has the sakes figures to prove that you want Main Street customers to look at the shop windows, not the sidewalks. Obviosuly sales per square foot are not the point of urbanism, but most Main Street redos are about economic vitality, and it's nice to know that these rules support good, simple design.
I got the Kindle version :)
Posted by: Thomas at May 19, 2012 4:15:48 PM
Thomas' comment brings to mind a question as to whether all the formulas and strategies in the world will matter once everything is "consumed" etherially...or ordered from online retailers.
Posted by: Brian M at May 21, 2012 8:34:51 PM