Innovation That Matters

Shopping center introduces fast walking lanes for impatient consumers


Meadowhall shopping center in Sheffield, UK, has created fast and slow lanes to ensure customers aren't held up by dawdlers.

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Shopping centers attract a wide variety of consumers and facility managers have a hard time ensuring everyone is catered for. In the past, we’ve seen Finland’s K-citymarket introduce slow checkout lanes for elderly and disabled customers, and now Meadowhall shopping center in Sheffield, UK, has created fast and slow lanes to ensure customers aren’t held up by dawdlers.

When retail outlets get busy, those with a brisker walking pace or are simply in a rush can often get held up by window shoppers and idling couples. To help better organize crowds in the rush hour, Meadowhall is now trialling separate lanes for slow and fast walkers. The pilot was prompted after the shopping center received a letter from 10-year-old customer Chloe Nash-Lowe, who said she was “incredibly disappointed” with the number of dawdlers who can cause those in a rush to be late. Shopping centre director Darren Pearce said: “The Meadowhall team liked Chloe’s idea so much that we have decided to trial an overtaking lane for fast walkers on the malls — helping them to get where they want to be on time”.

The idea is a simple way to enable customers to make their way through the center more quickly, providing a better experience and also helping them fit more shopping into their visit. Are there other offline ways to improve brick and mortar retail encounters?



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