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What Website Designers Can Learn From Store Fronts and the Smile and Hello

The store has a distinct advantage of actually being a physical and real-world place. A website does not have that convenience. In some ways, a store can be better at communicating a connection. So what can web design learn from storefronts and how are storefronts evolving in the future?

Reinventing the Store

The approachability will be one of the biggest components of physical stores in the future. It is something that website designers can lean into. On paper, the benefit of a physical store is obvious. But, these advantages are getting slimmer. There is an advantage of convenience for a physical store, but this may not always be the case. It certainly isn’t for some industries where the flexibility and range of products found online is far superior, and consumers have no problem waiting the additional few days to get it. With Amazon Prime bursting at the seams, consumers can get a product in two days from virtually anywhere.

What can be found here is a disparity between convenience and access. Physical stores seem convenient, but are they really? But, there is definitely something else happening in the world of retail. What about the friendly smile? How about the big hello and welcome?

Smile and Welcome

It is no coincidence that many chain stores are adopting a simple policy- smile and welcome. Walking into a store is now like being greeted by an acquaintance. What can digital stores not easily offer that physical places can? If the answer isn’t convenience, it has to be something else. Many companies, physical and not, are realizing the significance of social connection. They are realizing that stores can easily adopt a welcome atmosphere- a hello.

The answer is a social connection. It is no surprise that people feel welcomed and connected to their community when they shop in local stores. It is almost a backlash against the “walk and talk” fast culture evolving in the developed world. What is the problem with slowing down, collaborating with a local community, and communicating with real people?

This is going to continue to be a tough hurdle for web-based businesses. How can they deliver a personable and connected experience? A search engine is anything but personal. With new web design ideas, websites can help introduce a more personal and human touch to what they offer. Websites will have to find that authority that says "we care" and "we know the customer." Will they?