According to Pinterest’s annual prediction report, “Store Décor” will be a major search trend on their social media platform this year. They envisage searches for terms such as “vintage shop fronts” tripling and searches for “creative retail display” increasing +18x.

According to their data, millennials are part of the driving force behind the entrepreneurial trend, which reflects the current social and economic climate.

Retail Change

History shows when there’s an economic shock, young people turn to reinvention, and 2021 was no exception. Now named the year of “The Great Resignation”, 2021 saw 4.4 million adults in the UK quit their job, and 77% of 25 – 34 year olds look to change careers.

Adding to this, the pandemic clearly sparked an entrepreneurial streak in millennials, with government-backed Start Up Loans among 25 to 40 year olds accounting for 58% of total applications.

Among the start-ups have been independent shops. Bucking the trend for online retail, it seems many young adults have decided to open their own independent shops, with numbers rising for the first time since 2017.

Store Design

As more independent shops open, it’s important for owners to create eye-catching shop fronts, layouts and signage to entice customers in.

Pinterest will be a key platform for gathering inspiration, particularly where businesses are led by millennials – a generation that’s comfortable with social media. They will have a competitive advantage and easy access to the latest on-trend designs and interiors.

Inspired by Pinterest search data, here are 6 retail trends that will help set your independent store apart from the rest:

1. Curve Appeal

Curve’s the word in Pinterest’s 2022 design predictions. Popular for the past decade, geometric designs have now given way to curved interior schemes that make spaces feel soft, graceful and intimate.

Curved elements can be worked into retail spaces to soften their look and allow them to flow. Curved wooden display counters and till points are a good way of adding continuity to a space and making customers feel at ease.

Slated curved walls are also currently popping up in many retail stores. They provide a modern alternative to traditional partition walls, bringing warmth and texture to commercial settings. Woods such as ash, walnut, oak, and maple can be used depending on the desired aesthetic effect.

2. Biophilic Design

‘Biophilic’ design brings together aspects of the natural world such as sunlight, greenery, and natural materials. It’s a way of truly bringing the outdoors in.

Millennials have been early adopters of this natural interior trend, using it to enhance their mood and wellbeing. Biophilic design in retail brings other benefits too – one study has shown that a store with well-designed natural daylight can boost sales by up to 40%.

To maximise the availability of sunlight, install more mirrors into your retail space.

Planters with statement greenery are another way to introduce biophilic design elements into shops. To go one step further, install wooden planters made from reclaimed wood or heavy-duty oak to maintain an earthy feel.

3. Barkitecture

Pets have played a big role in our pandemic lives. Due to this, more and more shops are becoming dog friendly and embracing the ‘barkitecture’ trend. Not to be confused with pet-proofing, barkitecture introduces specific animal-friendly areas into a room.

Pet-friendly areas of shops could include: a banquette seating area with additional dog-friendly furniture, a dedicated play zone for pets, or a feeding station made from reclaimed wood.

4. Flexible In-Store Layouts

As independent brick-and-mortar stores battle with online retailers for sales, flexibility will be key to generating high footfall.

Flexible retail design will allow shop owners to change the layout of their store overnight, helping them to keep up with emerging retail trends, effectively promote new products, and create a unique shopping experience.

Flexibility also means retailers can create multifunctional spaces, where shopping areas can be interspersed with bars, cafes and art spaces. These destination-type stores offer diversity, encouraging customers to visit and share their experience online.

To ensure flexibility, invest in versatile shelving and display units. Flexible shelving will make it easier to test out different product assortments and see which shelving solutions and product arrangements drive the most profit. Movable partition walls are also a good way of ensuring versatility. They can be used to create different areas within a shop and moved around as new trends emerge.

5. Vintage Décor

Pinterest have predicted that searches for “vintage shop fronts” on their platform will triple within the next year. They also state that searches for “farmers’ market display ideas” will significantly increase. This suggests the vintage trend is likely to see a resurgence over the next 12 months.

If you’d like to add a vintage feel to your independent shop, there are several things you can do to achieve the perfect look and feel.

Firstly, consider the colour palette of your store. Many vintage designs feature rich, bold colours such as burgundy, gold and forest green. Reclaimed or distressed furniture will also give your store a vintage edge, as will a slatted wall made of natural wood. These particular vintage design features will evoke a sense of nostalgia and romantic, old-fashioned charm associated with years gone by.

6. Gathering & Event Spaces

Now people can conveniently shop online, some customers need a reason to venture out into brick-and-mortar stores again. One of the key attractions to physical shops is the chance for social gatherings.

Tying in with the flexible layout trend, well-designed shops can also be utilised as event spaces. By creating a can’t-miss retail experience, in-store event, or workshop, footfall is likely to increase. These events will increase sales and provide an opportunity for customers to meet with friends and socialise.

To accommodate for both sales and events, think about investing in large wooden display tables that can double-up as workbenches during an event or workshop.

Contact Us

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