The impact of rack layout on visual experience in a retail store

<p>A retail store's layout affects a shopper's visual experience and correspondingly the time spent in the store, navigation through the aisles, and allocation of attention and money across departments and categories. We show that alternate rack layouts allow for more of a rack's facing to appear in the shopper's visual field. To this end, we introduce a set of visual–spatial statistics comprised of visual measures (exposure and intensity) and spatial measures (space and aspect ratio) as a way to quantify the effect a retail layout has on a shopper's visual experience. We present both analytical and algorithmic approaches to capture the dynamics of a travelling shopper's field of regard with respect to a static rack layout. Results for the case of unidirectional shopper travel suggest that racks oriented at 30° from the direction of travel exhibit nearly 250% increase in exposure when compared to 90° racks; for bidirectional traffic, acute orientations still provide up to 150% higher exposure. Interestingly, rack orientations amenable to higher visual measures are not necessarily the best with respect to spatial measures. We illustrate the use of our approach to analyse a real-store layout from a nearby mass merchandiser.</p>