The Container Store just gave itself an organizational makeover. The retail chain, known for its wide array of storage and organization products, recently unveiled a new technologically infused “next generation store” in Dallas. The new design provides a refreshed consumer experience and aims to highlight why customers frequent The Container Store over its competition.
The First Things First area is located near the entrance of the store and features seasonal products that can help customers get organized in small ways. All photos by Mark Steele, courtesy of FRCH Design Worldwide.
“What we set out to understand was why a shopper, in their mindset, why they choose The Container Store and why they don’t,” says Brandon Avery, creative managing director of FRCH Design Worldwide, the firm that designed the Next Generation Store. “We used all those insights to develop the foundational experience for their store of the future.”
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New Store Design
The 24,500-square-foot flagship in Dallas now features 18 digital touchscreens, an optimized product navigation system and a Custom Closets Studio. The studio was designed as an in-store destination where “closet vignettes” are set up to allow customers to visualize what they want in their closet and find inspiration.
One of the goals of FRCH Design Worldwide was to bring some of The Container Store's "great products out of the shadows," in order to increase customer trip frequency.
“Their custom closet business is what makes them unique,” Avery says. “We developed that as the anchor for the space, gave it its proper home and created a destination experience out of it.”
To fight off customer feedback of feeling overwhelmed in beginning an organization project, FRCH also deployed the new Organization Studio. The studio is a digital experience that allows customers to start the process at home by uploading photos or videos online of an area that they’re looking to improve. They then have the ability to set up an in-store appointment with an expert at the store.
To elevate hospitality, FRCH Design Worldwide also included a seating area for customers to gather ideas and be inspired.
Other new additions to the store include digital touchscreens with look book-type displays of different settings in areas such as an office or kitchen, with the purpose of inspiring customers visually.
What’s Improved at The Container Store
Avery also says that they found categories of the store that needed elevating, including in kitchen, office and general closet organization. FRCH also wanted to highlight The Container Store’s products, Avery explains. “The store was set up in a big-box way, with fairly tall racks of merchandise, aisle after aisle, that were pretty cavernous.”
By bringing some of those products to the forefront, Avery says that helps the retail company increase the frequency of its customers making trips to the store. “Creating the proper experience has the ability to start to shift the role of the store and the frequency perception that customers have,” Avery says.
The Custom Closets Studio includes "closet vignettes" to help customer visualize possibilities.
The Dallas store will serve as a test-and-learn environment to see what other new elements will be rolled out to new and existing locations.
A new-and-improved checkout area.
Avery says he’s spoken to some of the employees at the Next Generation Store who are knowledgeable about the store and have a long history with the company. “They had nothing but great things to say,” he says. “They really are energized about working in this new space and seeing how they can use the new space and tools and store design to help customers.”
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