One of the great challenges for commercial retail spaces in 2021 is finding ways to get customers in the door. Whether restricted by social distancing mandates or simply stymied by an online ordering culture, brick-and-mortar businesses are facing challenges in attracting customers like never before. To continue to thrive, retail spaces must find ways to add value to the consumer experience above and beyond the products and services they house.

Fortunately, there are a number of trendy exterior renovation projects that can boost foot traffic in a retail space, creating the competitive advantage for which SVN has been known since 1987.

1. Simplify the Signage    

Stanley Building

Customers in 2021 have notoriously fickle attention spans. They do not want to spend time looking, reading, and thinking before making a decision. They want to see it, make their decision, and go on with their lives.

If a store features hard-to-read fonts and text-intensive messages as part of its permanent signage, consider simplifying this to something more digestible for a crowd that is likely to offer a cursory glance, at best.

Spend time developing a simple logo and brand and incorporate this as the focal point of the signage. When thinking about logos, ask the question: Would this make a good app icon? Subway and Best Western are two major retail chains that have recently modified their logos to be more app-friendly, with signage at physical locations being updated to match this change.

2. Add Some Architectural Decor

Awesome Architectural Door

Although customers like the consistency of a simple, recognizable brand, there is something to be said about using individual creativity to catch the attention of passersby. The country is in a bit of a DIY renaissance, with custom craftwork and artisanship in high demand, so features that can make a business stand out in the midst of a cookie-cutter crowd can be beneficial. 

Some creative decor ideas that can spruce up a retail space’s exterior include architectural grilles, ornate columns, and/or artwork made of recycled metals or other sustainable materials. 

3. Improve the Parking Lot

Commercial Parking Lot

A parking lot that feels unsafe, illogical, or is in a state of disrepair will be a major deterrent to foot traffic. Freshly landscaped islands, filled potholes, angled spaces, and re-painted space lines are all great ways to make a parking lot more inviting, an important first step in getting customers in the door.

4. Give Customers a Look Inside

Commercial Window

Using a large display window or wall not only allows customers to see product offerings, but it can be influential in creating an open and inviting atmosphere that appeals to passersby. As contemporary retail shopping needs to be more of an experience than a buy-and-sell transaction to appeal to modern customers, giving customers the ability to look inside and see what value a business can add to their lives should be a primary consideration.

5. Make Accessibility a Priority

ADA Compliant Parking Lot

An important aspect of increasing foot traffic is making sure that a business can accommodate all potential customers. Without ramps, handrails, and benches to assist disabled clients, a business is immediately eliminated from consideration by this demographic.

6. Install an Automatic Door at the Entrance

Automatic Door

Automatic doors make customers feel like they are getting the red carpet treatment. In addition, the accumulation of germs on door handles has gotten a lot of attention during the COVID-19 pandemic, so this small renovation can help make customers feel safe by ensuring a contactless entrance. 

Conclusion

Getting customers in the building will be a riddle that contemporary retail spaces must continue to solve to remain relevant in 2021 and beyond. By using the six exterior renovation ideas listed in this article, businesses can increase foot traffic at their physical locations to secure the competitive advantage for which SVN is known.

Matt Lee is the owner of the Innovative Building Materials blog and a content writer for the building materials industry. He is focused on helping fellow homeowners, contractors, and architects discover materials and methods of construction that save money, improve energy efficiency, and increase property value.