Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Store Spaces

A post by Gary Ray of Black Diamond Games on the relative importance of events to a store got me thinking about the different types of store spaces.  Generally, a retail store has five spaces:

selling space-- this is the space used to display merchandise. In most cases, without it, the store might as well close its doors and go out of business because without merchandise, the store has no reason to exist.

employee space-- this is space reserved for use by the employees (duh).  While customers have complete access to the selling space, they cannot enter employee space.  Employee space includes such areas as a lounge or a back office.  Typically, stores reduce employee space as much as possible, in order to maximize selling and customer space.

customer space--space used by customers that does not house or present merchandise available for sale.  In a game store, selling space includes restrooms, gaming space and any place for customers to sit.

storage space--space where overstock merchandise gets stored.  Since it cannot sell while in storage, most stores minimize storage space for products as much as possible, trying to get it out on the floor if possible.

dead space--space that cannot be used for anything else.  In most stores, this stays fairly small.  The classic example of dead space is the area in front of a fire exit.  Fire laws mandate the door stay unlocked and the area in front of it clear and uncluttered, which means the store cannot put anything there, no tables, no products, no chairs.