56 EQUIPMEN T, DESIGN AND OPERATIONS HANDBOOK 2017 | DESIGN www.groceryheadquarters.com
EDO HANDBOOK 2017
among analysts is that grocers need to improve the store’s
layout and design—if not choice of new format—to make
shoppers want to come to the supermarket for their food
and beverages rather than have them delivered to the home.
A recent white paper from WD Partners discusses the
“third wave of retail” and the need for all retailers to create
more meaningful experiences with quality stressed at every
touchpoint. The key message: At its core, grocery is a commodity business where differentiation can only be achieved
through a commitment to better products, service and
Such thinking leads to the creation of new dine-in
options, extended take/bake offerings and opportunities
for social interaction via wine clubs and growler bars. All of
these features create new moments in the store to provide
greater convenience, entertainment or education to engage
the shopper, according to John Bajorek, senior vice president of brand, strategy and design for WD Partners, based
in Columbus, Ohio.
He says WD Partners sees the design and layout of stores
as intertwined and—in some cases—can flip in sequence
depending on whether working on an existing store or a
new one. When considering a redesign for an existing store,
the layout is first reviewed through financial metrics and
shopper trip types or journey mapping. Once the layout
is fixed, then the design team would apply environmental, graphic and digital design against the layout, often with
a clear understanding of the elements that would remain
unchanged and a prioritization of the elements to impact.
For a new store, retailers would first design the ideal concept
and then tune it up with the right layout.
On a more granular level, Gladson helps retailers identify
the most frequently sold and most profitable items to ensure
the store layout helps shoppers find those items that contrib-
ute the most to the bottom line and satisfy their needs. For
example, today’s consumers are more interested in eating
healthier and understanding the nutritional value of food.
This is clearly apparent in the focus on more fruits and veg-
etables in their diet.
It is not surprising that the growth in size of a supermarket’s produce department connects with the way grocers are
personalizing the shopping experience. Data from the Food
Marketing Institute (FMI) indicates that the average grocery store has grown by more than 7,000 square feet in the
past 30 years. Much of that space has been added to produce
departments for more local and organic items to appeal to
shoppers looking for those options.
“Shoppers associate ‘local’ with ‘fresh,’ which they cite
as the most important attribute in the food they buy,” says
Dave Donnan, senior partner with A. T. Kearney, a global
management consulting firm with U.S. offices in Chicago.
He says several successful global fresh trends will impact
the U.S. market in the next five years. One trend is how
European grocers are re-positioning the produce department in new stores. For example, Aldi Sud changed the location of the produce section in a new store in Munich. Aldi
took fresh food and produce, which were always on the
perimeter in other locations, and repositioned them in the
center of the store. Essentially, the locations of center store
and perimeter departments have been flipped.
“Aldi has always had a strong presence in packaged goods
in the center store and a small produce section,” Donnan
says. “They are now moving to ramp up their produce and
fresh prepared foods. The Munich store is a flagship to