Talking Shop: Has Covid changed the layout and purpose of the store forever?

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As retailers re-evaluate their store portfolios, an increasingly radical range of options and uses are being trialled by some of the UK’s biggest retail chains. In the first instalment of Retail Week’s examination of how Covid has changed the store, Mark Faithfull looks at some of the tests and pilots under way and how they might inform the next generation of stores.

Co-working on aisle 12? Meeting local makers in a shopping centre that’s not a shopping centre? Collaborations with rapid-delivery companies to use supermarkets as convenience dark stores?

All these options and more are being tested in the UK right now, aiming to make sense of consumer behaviour that – amplified by the pandemic – has seen priorities shift; how and where people work change; and what and when they shop alter. 

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