Systembolaget’s stores should inspire – but not inspire to buy!

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Systembolaget’s stores are being given a new look and to make sure we’ve met our goal we opened a trial store in the Gränby centrum mall in Uppsala. Since October 2015, this new store has been used to trial everything, from décor and communication to the way we display our products. Our goal? To create a store where the customer feels welcome – without buying more. Welcome!

Our trial store allows us to try out all of our ideas to see what our customers think about them – and to see how their purchasing patterns are affected. We want to create a store concept that feels knowledgeable, inspirational, and considerate, but the last thing we want is to boost our sales. It’s not an easy combination to achieve, but nothing is impossible!

The idea is to focus on products and expertise, which is why the store environment is subdued, with a neutral palate. What we do instead is to highlight flavours and food and drink combinations in a variety of ways, using pictures and informational signs. Our “Beer Tree Map”, which shows how different types of beer are related in terms of flavour, is one example of this approach.

So how do you provide more know-how and inspiration – without tempting people to buy more? Here are four approaches we’ve trialled in Gränby.

1. “Hand it back” trolleys

Systembolaget never has catchpennies or loss leaders at its checkouts. And in Gränby, we’re going one step further, offering a trolley where customers can hand back items. By putting up a sign saying ”Psst! Changed your mind? Hand back drinks you don’t want to buy here”, we make sure that customers don’t miss out on the chance to buy less.

2. Facts and tips

Alongside the products, we display useful information in relation to food and quantities, so that a customer can, for example, work out how much drink they might need for a party. Which means they don’t have to buy more than they need, “for safety’s sake”.

3. Smaller packagings

Sometimes, our customers don’t actually need a full bottle of wine, but might not be aware that they have other options. Which is why, at Gränby, half bottles are displayed alongside full bottles of the same label.

4. Ethical and organic

The design language used in the signs for our organic products has been clarified at Gränby, and explains the difference that customers make when they buy ethical and organic labelled products.