Roving retail – The next evolution of shopping

As retail rental rates continue to rise, we are seeing more and more retail startups approach us at Creative Shop Retail Shopfitting to design and construct mobile retail kiosks. Mobile retail concepts allow retailers to take advantage of high-traffic areas without being locked into lengthy and costly retail leases.

In particular, the mobile retail concepts we have seen gaining the most popularity include the following:

412002Mall kiosks

The mall kiosk trend is still going strong. New retail concepts, particularly within the service industries, are capitalising on the relatively cheaper retail rates available to kiosks within malls. Kiosks give small retailers access to prime retail floor space, in high-foot traffic mall corridors, without the hassle of a full store set up. What is more, a well-designed mall kiosk can be moved, without much cost or hassle, if a particular location within the mall turns out to be less than ideal. Kiosks are ideal for service-orientated retail concepts, such as salons, gifting stores and food and beverage concepts. We have seen many of our clients grow from small mall kiosks into fully fledged, franchised mall tenants as their popularity increases and their businesses grow. The Brow Bar is a good example of a successful South African mall kiosk concept that grew out of the corridor into a national salon franchise.

412003Vehicle conversions

Mobile retail concepts have come along way from the ice-cream van and the festival mall truck. Many new retail businesses, particularly apparel brands, have caught on to the flexibility of adapting the food-truck business model to their industry. We are seeing up and coming designers converting trucks, vans, busses and other automobiles into exciting roving retail concepts. Mobile retailers can drive right into festivals, events, pedestrian malls and high-traffic parking areas – often for free, and if not, for relatively low rental rates. By taking their brands right to their target market, mobile retailers can interact with customers in a relaxed environment and entice shoppers who dislike commuting to shopping malls. Mobile retail concepts are a great way for brands to get to know their shoppers on a deeper level. Punk and Ivy is a good local example of a mobile fashion brand. The retro-styled Punk and Ivy van can be found roving around the most popular Johannesburg street events.

Hospitality brand collaborations

In many ways, hospitality brand collaborations are a natural extension of the now well-established pop up shop trend. What we are seeing now is that brands are collaborating with hotels to bring their wares directly into hotel rooms. By using the same business model as a hotel mini would do, apparel and beauty brands are able to take advantage of hotel chain’s credit card policies to ensure that any items removed from the hotel room are automatically charged to the customer’s room account. Mini Fashion Bar, which operates in the USA, is one such example of an in-hotel mini-bar shop selling key wardrobe items to hotel guests.

All in all, retailers that are brave enough to venture outside of their traditional mall locations can enjoy a multitude of benefits. By going to their shoppers, rather than waiting for their shoppers to come to them, retailers can position themselves to maximise their chances of future success.

If you are looking to set up a roving retail concept for your business that will really connect with your customers, contact the experts at Creative Shop Retail Shopfitting. Our team of designers and craftsmen can help you prototype and construct the idea solution to get your shop moving, just the way you want it to.

Contact the Creative Shop team at 011 872 1510 or, or visit to find out more.

Source: Biz Community Posted: 26 SEP 2017

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