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First Look: The Vitamin Shoppe debuts innovation store concept

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The Vitamin Shoppe is integrating technology with customer-friendly store design.

The specialty retailer of nutritional products is opening a new innovation store in Edgewater, N.J. Building off the footprint of the existing Edgewater store, the completely reimagined 3,185-sq.-ft. space features interactive elements such as on-demand digital product guides, enhanced mobile POS checkout, a designated area to take the retailer's new personalized health assessment, a complimentary body composition analysis station, and a supplement sampling machine. 

Signature merchandise assortments, including the store's CBD Central and Keto HQ sections, as well as service programs like free nutritionist consultations via the Healthy Awards loyalty program, are seamlessly integrated into the innovation concept. The Vitamin Shoppe currently plans to open five new stores in a similar format through January 2020.

Designed by Dayton, Ohio-based ChangeUp Inc., the Edgewater store features a warm color palette, wood flooring, and updated fixtures meant to enhance the merchandise layouts. Design accents include Edison bulb lighting, brass signage and leather trim details. A new wayfinding system streamlines the shopping experience and strategically placed educational guides help lead customers to desired products. The cash-wrap has been upgraded with a 100-inch LED video screen that displays branded content.

In addition, a new digital product education tool will provide content currently available on The Vitamin Shoppe’s website. Piloting technology from Spacee Inc., the product recognition device brings up a detailed product guide on an LCD flat screen for any product in the store. Shoppers can view usage guides, nutrition facts, customer reviews, current promotions and additional recommended products on screen. Enlarged labels are also shown, making small labeling text easier to read.

Also for the first time, The Vitamin Shoppe will launch the Aptos One Store Commerce mobile selling application, which enables mobile checkout on iPads. Other in-store systems include RetailNext traffic counting and advanced heat mapping technology to help the retailer understand how in-store associate behavior, marketing campaigns, and promotions guide the shopper path to purchase. The Vitamin Shoppe will leverage these analytics to improve the customer experience across all channels.

Other features of the new store format include:

•    A health bar where customers can take a personalized online assessment and set up automatic deliveries for Vitamin Shoppe’s Only Me subscription service.

•    Personalized in-store virtual consultations with nutritionists for gold, silver and bronze members of The Vitamin Shoppe’s Healthy Awards loyalty program at select stores.

"Our newly remodeled Edgewater location represents the next generation of stores for The Vitamin Shoppe, and will inform the future direction of our total retail experience,” said Sharon Leite, CEO of The Vitamin Shoppe. “We have taken the elevated aesthetic of a modern apothecary and imbued it with leading-edge technology and services that will simplify and demystify the experience of shopping for health and wellness supplements."

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