The Dieline's 2018 Trend Report: Retail Spaces Become Brand Experience Spaces

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As social interaction diminishes, smart brands will reinvent their spaces for people to connect, interact, and discover the brand versus just shopping the branding online. We will see the rise of Insta-Ready retail designs, perfectly curated for that gram. Limited time pop-up stores will emerge as interactive experiences change the way the retail world operates as big chains like Macy’s and Sears continue to downsize.  Some studies suggest that for every company closing a store, 2.7 companies are opening one, and by online retailers creating brick and mortar shops, the online and real-world shopping ecosystems are merging.


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Gentle Monster Stores

Gentle Monster is the Lady Gaga nightmare we’ve all been waiting for. And they sell sunglasses. According to Design Week, they’re “not sure how they fund it, but the pace of store refresh this Korean eyewear brand adopts is setting new benchmarks for retail experience. Apparently, its Shanghai store has a ground floor refresh every 25 days, driven presumably by the smartphone generation’s insatiable appetite for Instagrammable news.”

 
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ConBody

Saks Fifth Avenue has now expanded beyond clothing by opening a "prison-style" boot camp class taught by formerly incarcerated trainers. ConBody, is Saks' first-ever in-house fitness studio and a part of The Wellery, the retailer’s new expansive health and fitness concept space.

 
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Starbucks

The world’s largest Starbucks recently opened in Shanghai and it’s being called a "Coffee Wonderland" complete with a "Pairing Bar," that shows customers how coffee complements different varieties of food.

 
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Google Home Mini

In celebration of Google Home Mini, Google hosted multiple pop up shops all over the country that sold adorable mini donuts, the perfect compliment to the tech giant’s diminutive new personal home assistant.

 
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Storefront

Often called the Airbnb of Pop-Up retail space, Storefront is the website that allows retailers to find the perfect short-term rental for any occasion. To date, Storefront has facilitated space for more than 3,000 growing startups like Etsy, global brands like Google or Target, even Kanye West’s Yeezus.

 
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AmazonGo

AmazonGo adds the thrill of shoplifting to the retail experience. Just kidding, but the system of shopping at AmazonGo is so easy it almost feels like your stealing. With their grab-and-go model that allows consumers to purchase every item through the AmazonGo app on their phone, customers forgo the checkout line experience entirely.

 
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Nordstrom Local

Nordstrom Local is a service-oriented concept store equipped with a small footprint and no inventory. The first location recently opened in West Hollywood, California, and allows shoppers to buy online and try on their purchases in store, with other amenities on-site like a tailoring service, personal stylist, nail salon and drinks.