We stopped in at B&Q’s new small format store on Holloway Road, London, a few weeks ago to take a look around. We were particularly interested given that we’d recently explored its new Cribbs Causeway concept store. Here are our top five takeaways:
1. The large oversized orange B&Q sign acts like a beacon on the long Holloway Road, cutting through the clutter of surrounding stores effectively.
2. It’s nice to see a properly designed, structured community board, as opposed to a cheap-looking cork board. Details like this help enhance B&Q’s reputation as a retailer that knows about making stuff.
3. Navigational signage is understated and unobstrusive, making a refreshing change from many retail stores. Its subtlety allows customers to look out across the store and easily locate the till area etc, without vistas being interrupted by multiple hanging signs.
4. The importance of lighting is often underestimated in the in-store environment, and we felt the lighting in this store was one of the best things about it. No dazzling spotlights here. These strip lights light the space up brightly and beautifully with what feels like close to natural light. Their sheer length looks pretty elegant too.
5. Messaging around online ordering and Click + Collect is frequent but doesn’t feel like overkill. The simplicity of the messaging makes it feel like a ‘by the way’ message rather than a ‘YOU WILL READ THIS’ message.