Think of the last time you were in an airport. Yes, it’s probably been a while.
No matter how directionally challenged you may be, and no matter how many emails, texts and calls you work on while haphazardly walking through an airport, you still always magically find your way to the gate. This is despite the fact that you may not have ever been to a particular airport before, you may not be able to read the language on the signs (a sign you travel internationally a lot!) and you’re sidestepping thousands of people focused on what they’re doing.
The reason you are an airport genius?
Every step of your journey in an airport — from the moment you step through the entrance, traverse security, your concourse, the food court and navigate the airport subway — is steeped in an immense amount of design that occurred years before you visited that airport.
Airports are designed to give you cues along the way to help herd you and your fellow travelers to your destination. And if you get going the wrong direction, there are all kinds of visual cues that send that signal to your gut, telling you that you’re going the wrong way.
Enter Walmart, who is using airport design to test new store layouts. It’s starting in 200 stores and going to 800 stores by early 2022, writes Janey Whiteside, executive vice president and chief customer officer at Walmart’s U.S. division, in a corporate blog.
The company is pairing its app with the new store design. Shoppers are already on their phones. Why not utilize those phones to make a faster, more efficient shopping experience?
“We were inspired by airport wayfinding systems as best-in-class examples of how to navigate large groups of people,” Whiteside said.
“Developed through a customer-centric lens, the design creates an elevated experience that appeals to shoppers through a sleek design aesthetic, a layout that spotlights products and an end-to-end digital navigation that guides customers throughout their journeys.”
Walmart is using its app and new store design to move you through their stores and toward key items such as electronics, toys and baby products. The company also will include scan & go terminals and is creating a shopping experience where customers flow through and out the store efficiently.
What does all this reduce? Friction! Friction is probably the single greatest barrier to all businesses getting more customers and keeping the customers it has. The easier it is to do business, the more business a business will get!
How easy is it to do business with you and your company? Strive to make your relationship with customers seamless, solve your customers’ problems and I bet you’ll be on your way to bigger and better revenue.
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