Edgars opened a new 8,000 sqm store in Johannesburg's Fourways Mall last week, its first concept store since its brand relaunch last year.
According to the retailer, the new store - which houses a vast range of fashion, beauty, and homeware - is designed to evoke a sense of play and to be an inspiring space for South Africans to express themselves through fashion.
"Internationally, retailers are purposefully rewiring themselves in the ever-evolving retail landscape to enable the ‘experience economy’. Retail isn’t dead, only boring retail is dead. In order to thrive in a time where customers can do anything anywhere and get personalised real-time experiences both online and in real life, big retailers need to make the shift. And Edgars is no exception," says the retailer in a statement.
Interaction above transaction
For the Fourways store, Edgars worked closely with design-and-build focused agency Design Partnership to create an environment that goes "beyond the transaction", and instead inspires "meaningful and memorable experiences".
Edgars Fourways Mall is described as a subtle nod to the heritage of retail stores as the heart of the high street. Just like a town square, a tree-lined central social space anchors all Edgars’ in-store departments on both floors, activating the in-between-space with services and exclusive food partnerships.
A Mugg & Bean coffee shop, in the central square presents an opportunity to socialise or take time out without needing leaving the store.
Other non-transactional spaces that focus on customer service have been designed with a hospitality-led approach. For example, instead of typical counter service, the customer/financial service zones have service booths, soft seating, and informal pause areas.
"Ultimately it’s a social retail space designed for pure experience," says Edgars chief executive Mike Elliott.
"That was the starting point for the design that is the new Edgars Fourways Mall. In line with future retail trends, we’re prioritising interaction over transaction, and we’re doing it all especially for the South African consumer. As a brand we are unapologetically South African about our love for everything local, and this store is our latest expression of that culture."
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Other in-store features and services include the denim bar, home zone, footwear world, custom zone, personal shoppers and beauty rooms. An elevation of the Edgars beauty counters, the beauty rooms house beauty experts trained to give customers head-to-toe makeovers and to share their knowledge on the brand’s latest exclusive beauty products.
Activation spaces for cosmetic events, home demonstrations and new launches bring in an experiential element to the store. There are also play areas for kids and digital multi-zone screens with in-store music.
A focal bulkhead and feature overhead lighting lead the customer throughout the store towards the central square and other key customer services. Edgars says the entire store environment is agile enough to allow departments to shift and adapt.
Each department is set up with tracks that not only house the technical display lighting but also allows for feature lighting and other power requirements to be plugged in and suspended wherever needed as the departments move.
"Every element in Edgars Fourways Mall is designed to create a contemporary yet warm and friendly South African environment," says the company.
Click and collect
For those customers pressed for time to browse in-store, Edgars has just launched a new click and collect service. Shoppers can now shop online, choose a store for delivery, and collect their order at no additional cost. This online service is now available at the new Edgars in Fourways Mall.