Articles Written By: Eve Reid (Metamorphosis Group)

This author has written 8 articles

What is a ‘concept store’ and why is everybody doing it?

Top Man - General Store

When we look at retail today, it’s clear to see that we as consumers, sick of being stuck in the mundane routine of life, are aching to see innovation. We want new ways of shopping and fresh experiences that stand out from the crowd.

Ask yourself this.

Have you ever seen an Apple store empty?

Isn’t it true that whenever you walk past one or stop to go inside, you’re amazed to see what is a remarkably blank space packed to the rafters with millions of humanoids playing with shiny screens, like they have all the time in the world!

And then in contrast, you come across a Curry’s or a T Mobile store, and it’s midway between a ghost town and dawn of the dead.

You wonder why these businesses haven’t noticed the very real impact that locking your goods away behind glass doors or using ‘fake’ phone models in place of real ones, can have on your ability to engage with your audience and get them hooked and reel them in.

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What’s the most important skill a retailer can learn?


What will be the most important business skill of the next 5 years?

Well a Harvard professor says it’s storytelling. In fact, Harvard Business School marketing professor Theodore Levitt, has boldly stated that tomorrow’s products and companies will “Live Or Die By Their Stories….”

That’s big talk!

Stories help to build deeper relationships between consumers and the products they’re selling. Stories join up dots and make connections. If data gives credibility, then stories provide truth.

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10 shopper trends shaping retail landscape in 2015

Eve Reid From Eve-olution to showrooming, The Metamorphosis Group’s visual retail specialist Eve Reid gives us her 10 pointers on the shopper psychology that is shaping the retail landscape in 2015.


There are more than 20 million people over the age of 50 living in the UK today. And yet retailers are still obsessively focused on young people. As we are down-ageing, this new ‘ageless society’ creates many trends that have impacted on the retail landscape.

Consumers have been nostalgic for carefree childhoods and have found comfort in familiar pursuits and products from their youth. Plus, we have really started to appreciate being alive, and that’s leading to a greater awareness that good health extends longevity and leads to a new way of life. So in 2015, if you want to flourish you need to consider the generational crossover and the implications of this demographic shift.

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How important is your store window anyway?

Sales window display at sweet shop, Hope and Greenwood

Attracting shoppers to your store begins way before they even step through the front door. If the eyes are the window to the soul, then creating winning windows that work, is where the road to success begins.

As the modern pace of life increases and working hours continue to break from the traditional 9 – 5, we as consumers have become ever more demanding.  We want to eat, we want to drink and we expect to shop wherever and whenever we choose.

Now you could, like the old countryside churches, keep your doors open to the masses 24/7. But for most retailers, unless you live in the States, that’s just never going to happen. So perhaps it’s time we considered just how big of a showcase opportunity your windows display can be. May be it’s time to really learn how to use it to its maximum effect, so that your window display is working when you are not.

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Two days to turn an empty space into an Italian pop-up market

Based in Weir Road Wimbledon, Vallebona has established itself as one of the top Italian food suppliers in the capital as well as the leader of wholesale artisan Sardinian produce.

Situated in an industrial estate slightly off the beaten track, footfall has been very much dependent on trade walk-ins. In recent months, Vallebona has seen an increasing consistency of custom, including non-trade clientèle, due to positive word of mouth.

Vallebona saw an opportunity to expand the business when an industrial unit next door became available, offering a vast empty space that needed filling. They enlisted the help of WBC & the Metamorphosis Group to ensure the additional space was fully utilised; increasing commerciality by raising the average transaction value. Here are some of the pictures – their before and after. See how we used props and vintage retail display fixtures to turn an unused space into London’s newest indoor pop-up Sardinian marketplace.

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Valentine’s gift packaging ideas: what’s on our shelf?

We all know the drill by now. Like it or lump it, if we get caught out on Valentine’s Day we do so at our peril. We can spend all the time in the world pondering the unfairness of it all; the sheer materialistic exploitation of us lovers in the world, who only want to love, not shop, are instead unwittingly manoeuvred into a position of fear and trembling at the very thought of returning to the connubial bed chamber empty-handed.

Hey, at least it makes for good business!

So lest you get caught out, we asked the visual merchandisers the Metamorphosis group to put together a simple collection of Valentine’s gift packaging ideas that will save your customers bacon and hopefully bag you some extra profits at this slower time of year. All the Valentine’s gift packaging and retail display units you see below are currently in stock and ready to go; with delivery in 24 hours. See something you like? Give us a call on 08000 85 85 95.

Tip 1

This Valentine’s Day display is more than just beautiful paper and ribbon. Create eye catching displays that increases impulse purchasing and imprints what the shop has to offer on the minds of consumers.

To create this look, choose a palette of colour to unify the various materials you’ll be using to wrap items with. In this case, our colour palette was red and natural white – obvious colours that communicate the theme of Valentines’ Day, but the principle applies to whatever retail display theme you’re working towards. Against the backdrop of the Kingsley range of free standing retail display units, the Valentine’s hamper visually stands out throughout the promotion.

Use simple materials like tissue paper and double layered decorative ribbon, which are contrasting in colour and at texture, when wrapping.

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Visual merchandising experts reveal their top tips

Retail display concepts for pop up shops and independent retailersWhen it comes to visual merchandising and retail display, a New Year is the perfect opportunity to celebrate your successes and an obvious time to evaluate where improvements can be made. We believe that each and every New Year brings with it a fresh start and room to plan, re-think and strategise. The following five ‘must dos’ highlight key areas that will ensure you’re set up for a successful 2013.

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