The ILC Retail Impact Project, supported by the SBDRP and made possible through University of Stirling funding, has recently published a series of five guides to transform the retail sector’s approach to serving older consumers, focusing on creating age-friendly environments, promoting inclusivity, and enhancing well-being for customers and workforce alike.
Accessibility: Welcoming Spaces for All
The guide on accessibility encourages businesses to create retail spaces that are easily navigable and comfortable for a diverse clientele. It underscores the importance of thoughtful design elements like accessible shelving and clear signage, demonstrating how these adjustments can significantly enhance the shopping experience for older customers, those with mobility challenges, and families.
Workforce Wellbeing: A Healthy Team for a Healthy Business
Recognising the pivotal role of staff wellbeing in the retail sector, this guide offers strategies for retailers to support their teams. It shows that investing in employee health – both physical and mental – leads to better customer service and stronger business outcomes, highlighting the interconnection between staff wellbeing and retail success. This guide shows that investment in people and caring for employees translates into better customer service and, ultimately, a more robust bottom line.
Customer Service: The Cornerstone of Retail Experience
Great customer service remains at the heart of retail success. This guide encourages retailers to go beyond transactions, fostering genuine connections with customers. It highlights how empathetic, personalised service can transform a routine purchase into a memorable experience, bolstering customer loyalty and setting businesses apart in a competitive market.
Healthy Environments: Fostering Wellbeing on the High Street
A healthy retail environment extends beyond the doors of individual shops. This guide provides insights into creating vibrant, welcoming high streets that encourage active lifestyles and social engagement. It emphasises the role of retailers in contributing to the health of the community, advocating for spaces that promote well-being and social cohesion.
Healthier Choices: Nourishing the Community
The guide on healthier choices tackles the vital role retailers play in influencing health outcomes through the products they offer. It encourages businesses to curate their offerings to provide healthier alternatives, making it easier for consumers to make beneficial choices. This guide is a call to action for retailers to become proactive in promoting community health.
The SBDRP says:
These guides offer practical, actionable insights for retailers willing to adapt and innovate in an ageing society. Aligning with our vision to support healthy ageing through actionable research, the guides serve as a roadmap for businesses ready to adapt and thrive in a society where everyone’s well-being is valued.
For more resources and to join the movement towards a healthier retail future, visit healthyretail.org.