Retail is arguably the most chaotic and rapidly shi ing sector in contemporary design. The fortunes of the shopfront are at the whim of the consumer and just when you think you’ve got it all figured out – the dart-board moves yet again. Fluctuating generational behaviours (from Baby Boomers to Milennials, and even the newly emerging “Gen Viz”) predict the life and death of the retailer. And those brands and businesses that have lost sight of technology’s role within the sector, or not plotted out their future-proof strategy, may be in grave danger of losing relevance among their market.
In this edition of Indesign: the ‘consume’ issue, we ask, what is design’s value proposition to its retail clients? We put the spotlight on inventive strategies and maneuvers used by our industry’s top practitioners in navigating this increasingly volatile sector. We unravel the market mysteries of technology and commerce, speaking with some of the world’s most creative entrepreneurs who are delivering intelligent, lasting and accessible solutions. Employee-less retail, for instance, is a growing concept, gaining popularity fast! Is it simply a pipe dream or a legitimate fixture of next-gen retail models? Flick to page 170 to see what we’re getting at.
‘Future-proofing’ may be a dreaded term in retail design, but against the odds there are those that have cracked the code in producing retail environments that outlast the brutal five-year cycle. Don’t believe us? We have the proof right here, on page 178!
The value of emotional experiences in physical retail has become a lifeline for Australia’s, at times, floundering retail industry. This we know. But are the same old popup installations that once had us flocking in-store eliciting the same response? Here, we speak with design’s most exceptional retailers on how they are thinking differently on this vital concept.
This issue, it is our intention to surprise, shock and please you! We invite you to rethink everything you ever assumed about retail, to look beyond the shopfront to consider the imaginative solutions and intelligent design strategies shaping contemporary commerce. We invite you to consume the best the industry has to offer – enjoy the issue!
Sophia Watson & Alice Blackwood | Indesign Co-Editors