“Shops are becoming performance spaces. They are evolving into places full of activity, where customers make things, talk about stuff, test products, taste producer, learn a skill, strut their stuff and possibly buy stuff.”
Writer Deirdre Macken made this observation in The Forum in The Weekend Australian Review a few weeks ago.
It seems the days when shopkeepers essentially displayed products and ran cash through the till are gone. Deirdre’s observations indicate we are ‘refashioning’ the way we think about customers/consumers/??..what should we call buyers today?
Reminiscent of older European ways of working and selling from the same space, Deirdre notes an Asian feel coming to many retail strips – with artisans and tradespeople mixing their workshops with their shopfronts, with shopfronts becoming service centres that:
Deirdre believes the internet has groomed us to be demanding. On the net we get experiences and feedback and we feel in control. So why would we trail around a store looking for a salesman?
“We’ll insist on participating in the purchasing moment..in a sports shoe store saying ‘How do you expect me to buy running shoes when you don’t have a running machine where I can test them?’
OR, when visiting a bookshop, we’ll wonder
“Why doesn’t the owner have a book-club selection, or doesn’t play tapes of authors talking about their books?”
Great observations Deirdre